We all know that food generally makes me extremely happy. To coin a phrase it makes me as happy as a pig in muck …
To coin another I ate like one [a happy pig in muck, that is]
So last night I was invited by the lovely guys at The Botanist in Leopold Square, Sheffield to try out their new summer menu.
My usual eating companion is the lovely Sue. [the naughty 60] However last night as he’s never been before I decided to treat my boyfriend. He is really particular about his food and quite vocal. The perfect critic. He’s also been working ridiculous hours so I thought it would be nice to get him away from it all for a few hours… and actually speak to me! Hello I’m here… [ method in my madness]
The Botanist Restaurant as mentioned previously is located in Leopold Square. You go through the main doors and up a few flights of stairs, as its situated on the top/third floor. It is quite simply a stunning restaurant. There are lifts which are a god-send in this balmy dry heat we are experiencing. I didnt tell the BF this however until we had trodged right the way up the stairs arriving at the top like two sweaty monsters!
The first time I visited I likened it to the Secret Garden. Read more HERE
This was my 4th or 5th visit; as always I found there was a lively atmosphere. I was actually quite surprised how busy it was for 6.30pm on a Tuesday evening. Busy nice … not busy where you find people practically sat on top of you and you can’t hear yourself think. Lots of chatter, laughter and people enjoying themselves. This is something my BF commented on more or less straight away. He’s already planning a return visit with a group of his mates.
We were also treated to some entertainment in the form of live music [a guy and his guitar from the bandstand ] This started around 7.30 ish.
We both love live music and found ourselves singing along to a few tunes – when our mouths weren’t full of course …. which wasn’t very often!
I didn’t need much persuading.
We choose a couple of dishes which came in the way of Cumberland and Pork Chipolatas [with honey grain mustard £3.95] and Pork Crackling [with chilli, spring onion and sweet apple sauce £3.95]
I don’t think a little sausage has ever made me so happy! The honey grain mustard added that little extra ‘something’ and made it rather special.
If the Botanist are not already doing so the honey grain mustard needs be sold in the bottle to take home . I’d have this on everything. Mayonnaise … mayonnaise who?
When I was younger we used to have to fight for the crackling. Dad always used to blag the best bits leaving Mark [my brother] and I with the hard in the middle with soggy end pieces. Luckily mum didn’t like it or else it would just have been the soggy bits for us!
Theres no fighting with this portion, its more than enough…and no soggy pieces. Yay! This is a great one to share. I think a portion to yourself might be verging on a tad sickly.
We then moved onto starters, though to be honest the nibbles were more than a starter in themselves and I actually felt quite satisfied. Not that it stopped me!
We had both choosen Gambas Pil Pil [cooked in chilli, garlic and olive mayo -£7.50]
Five large juicy prawns cooked in a spicy sauce. This was so tastey and it had a serious spicy kick to it. You’ll need the bread to soak the sauce up which is way to nice to leave.
Presentation as always was spot on.
The summer menu mains are split into different sections – Off the Barbecue, From the Rotisserie, Hanging Kebabs, Home Comforts , Salads, Pies and Sides. It is varied and I’m sure there is something to suit everybodies taste.
For his main the BF choose one of the famous hanging kebabs. He choose Chicken [with garlic butter and properly seasioned chips £11.75 ]
He loved the quirky presentation. He loved drizzling his kebab in the garlic butter and most importantly he loved the taste. He ate it in super quick time.
He only had one tiny critisim and that was that the kebab could have been slightly warmer.
I had one of the salads Tenderstem Broccoli, Beetroot and Avocado Salad [with soya beans, cherry tomatoes and quinoa with added grilled chicken £11.50]
I love all the main ingredients broccoli, beetroot, avocado and grilled chicken. Together it made for a rather lovely salad.
It may sound quite pricey for a plate of greenery but it was seriously large and more importantly tastey and healthy. I was still munching away on greens along time after the BF had finished his.
Decisions , decisions…
I wasn’t going to have a pudding. I only popped to the toilet and when I returned found the BF had already ordered a couple for us to share. He has a very sweet tooth and pudding is his favouite.
On the recommendation of Billie our fabulous waitress we devoured…
Sticky toffee pudding [with vanilla ice-cream £5.50]
I only had the one mouthful … the BF scoffed the rest. The mouthful I had however was very nice.
Caramelised Banana Split [ along time favourite, with toasted marshmallow icecream, brownie pieces, peanuts, biscuit cream and chocolate sauce £5.50]
OMG I can’t even begin to explain how delicious this was. It was like a party in my mouth as the different tastes and textures hit me. Who knew peanuts would work so well in a dessert? Who knew, who knew?!
I savoured every mouth full and despite stuffing my face on the previous courses I could quite honestly have eaten it again. Yes this is me the very same girl who didnt even want a dessert!
It was by far the best Banana split I’ve ever had.
We washed it all down with a coffee each. I love how its served in a proper mug #homely.
All in all we had a great evening and [thankfully] the BF loved his first visit.
What I personally love about eating at The Botanist is it’s so much more than just a meal. It’s an experience.
Visually you find yourself lost in the beautiful design. Please tell me there are other people out there that count the butterflies?
It’s in no way ‘stuffy’ – I’ve been to so many restaurants where you feel like you can’t even cough; it’s more like a library than a restaurant.
I love that there is entertainment. You really can’t beat live music. I’ve been there when people have got up and had a quick dance. Fabulous. My mum used to dance wherever she was. It’s a nice memory.
If your after a fun night out that involves great food and drink you really can’t beat it. Just add good company.
Ohhh and tell them Tracey [the naughty 40 ] sent you … and make sure whatever you do you finish with the banana split! [ seriously in quiet moments I find myself dreaming about it]
Until next time x