As our ‘local’, we don’t end up coming here very often. The quality and pricing make Boulcott Street Bistro more of an experience rather than just dinner out.
Rex Morgan of former Citron fame (we still mourn the passing) is behind the wheel here, and so the food is of the fine dining ilk, set in the lovely old gothic-architectured Plimmer House historic villa.
You can’t book here, other than large groups or for the private room upstairs, so it is strictly a first come, first serve basis. They are very happy to accommodate you in their bar until a table is free (a cunning plan I’m sure), so you maybe don’t want to be on a time schedule if you really want to dine here.
The service is as polished here as you’d expect (other than a smidgen slow to clear during the peak 7.00 – 7.30pm arrival rush), and the food as good – accepting that you do need to open your wallet and go through the menu.
We were delivered rounds of soft home baked bread and butter to start, before well- presented entrees of beetroot, goat cheese and walnut Napolean (stack) with citrus and manuka honey dressing (very pretty and pink, and not for the girl at the table as you’d think…), and a pan fried duck fritter with iceberg and vinaigrette (complete in its own mini cast iron frypan – very smart).
For mains I couldn’t go past the house-made spaghetti in a spinach and basil sauce with roasted butternut, zucchini and tomatoes, and he (surprise, surprise – not!) chose the grilled sirloin and braised smoked shin with green beans and duck fried gourmet potatoes.
The spaghetti was deliciously green (in both look and taste) and the smoked shin definitely smokey. All were cooked to the right done-ness and were sufficiently filling without further sides. Interestingly one of the sides was creamy corn, not something you see every day in restaurants. And all accompanied by a pleasant Marlborough Envoy gewurzt that started out mildly spicy but warmed to slightly floral. Intriguing.
We skipped the desserts, feeling fairly nicely already, and departed on the long journey home (well it is uphill!) in time for one’s favourite tv show.
Would I come back? Definitely yes for a nice occasion (make sure you take your entertainment book gold card).