Culinary review: Dishes cooked to perfection at La Brasserie, Kidderminster
We all agreed – it was simply one of the best breakfasts we have ever had.
With my in-laws residing in Highley, Shropshire these days, and my family living in Netherton, Dudley, we decided to meet in Kidderminster.
The main reason? My daughter, Annabelle, was about to be spoiled by her grandmother as she took her shopping before her seventh birthday.
So my wife Kelly and I met her parents, Lorraine and Don, for a family outing – the first time we had all come together properly since the âyou know whatâ epidemic last March.
Lucky for me, I get along very well with my in-laws, so we decided to make it a little day and book a place for lunch as well.
After trawling the internet, I came across La Brasserie, which looked like the perfect place.
The restaurant is quite easy to miss as although it is pretty much in the city center it is quite set back from the road but from the outside it looked very quaint and lived up to its French name – the building itself could have been ripped right out of a French village and planted in the middle of Wyre Forest.
It was also nice to see that the all day Kidderminster car park had been reduced for the weekend from Â£ 6 for 24 hours to just Â£ 1.50. A great way to attract more visitors.
After Lorraine and Don spent a small fortune on my daughter, we realized we had done everything we needed to do about an hour earlier than planned – and, more importantly, Annabelle was starting to get hungry.
As everyone knows, there is nothing worse than trying to entertain a hungry six year old, so we found the restaurant and asked if our reservation could be advanced. They were happy to help and it was the start of a wonderfully friendly service that we enjoyed from start to finish.
After ordering a drink we had some time to look at the menus in detail and the first thing we all noticed was how reasonable the prices were.
Since this was a lunch menu, we figured the prices might be low as the portions might be smaller than usual – but it definitely wasn’t.
All the meals were plentiful and even the children’s menu was ridiculously good for the price. A quality starter, main course and pudding for just Â£ 6. Good deal.
We thought about skipping the entrees but, once I decided to have one, everyone jumped on board. I opted for the plain bread and olives, which I shared with my wife (didn’t know I was sharing it when I ordered, but that’s life) and it was lovely.
Lots of good quality olives, a few peppers, a good serving of fresh bread and some olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping. The perfect starter for most occasions.
Another point to mention on the children’s menu was that it even seemed appealing to adults, so much so that Lorraine asked the waiter if it would be possible to have the garlic with cheese, which was not available. on the adult menu.
Again they were more than happy to help out and while I didn’t taste it myself, even the kids’ garlic and cheese bread got a resounding boost.
The main courses also looked very appetizing and we all opted for a different dish.
Don opted for the slow roasted pork belly, served with red cabbage and scalloped potatoes, and Lorraine had beef bourguignon, which was beef slowly cooked in red wine, mushrooms, shallots, and a bacon sauce. , also served with a dauphinoise sauce.
Both came served with roasted carrots and buttered broccoli.
Again, I didn’t taste them myself, but both my in-laws were seriously impressed.
The meat came straight from the butcher and it was easy to tell the quality was high. The beef collapsed when squeezed with a fork, the sauce was rich and full of flavor, the cracklings on the pork were cooked to perfection, the potatoes paired wonderfully with the meat and veg – that I got to taste – were also beautifully cooked, with the carrots having that nice sweet aftertaste.
Kelly asked for a sirloin but was unfortunately informed that the butcher had not been able to deliver them that day – which is why we knew the meat was of such good quality even before tasting it. – so she went for the rump instead.
She asked for it on time and, again, we were quietly confident that it would be served as she requested. This time I was able to taste the dish myself and it was quite melt in my mouth. This came served with fries and roasted cherry tomatoes.
I wanted to stay vegetarian for the day, for no particular reason, and opted for the tortellini, which were filled with spinach, ricotta and served in a roasted tomato reduction sauce. It also came with garlic bread.
Again the portion was generous and the pasta was well cooked and delicately. Each tortellini had that nice, strong touch of ricotta, and then the mellow flavor of spinach following up close.
Other options included tempura-battered cod, a pie of the day, half a roast chicken with a variety of sauces, and freshly made baguettes with a selection of mouthwatering toppings, such as steak and onion, chicken Caesar dressing. grilled, roast pork and stuffing and bacon and brie.
The pudding followed for my wife, in-laws and my daughter – I was a bit overloaded with bread – but between us we enjoyed a sticky caramel pudding with a salted caramel sauce; a stack of double cream summer pudding; and a lemon cheesecake made with fresh lemon curd and crushed meringue.
Again the quality was superb and I have to say the sticky caramel pudding with salted caramel sauce was one of the best I had tasted in a long time.
The combination worked so well, with that cute gooey center giving way to the cake, then the hit of that cold, slightly salty ice cream.
Annabelle’s baked bolognese was also wonderfully prepared, full of fresh ingredients that had been prepared with as much care and attention as the adults’ meals. She finished her meal with a fairly large chocolate brownie.
She didn’t manage to finish it all but the chocolate plated around her face reassured us that she really appreciated it.
We really couldn’t rate La Brasserie enough. A great place to visit whether for lunch, dinner or even for a take out.
The Brewery, Lower Mill Street, Kidderminster, DY11 6UU
Classic French Onion Soup – Â£ 4.50
Beet and halloumi salad – Â£ 5
Tempura battered cod – Â£ 10
Half roast chicken – Â£ 10
Mango panna cotta – Â£ 5
Ice creams and sorbets – Â£ 3.50