We went to Purchases for lunch on one of the hottest days of the year. As we walked in the door the first question was ' Would you like a cold glass of water?' - immediately I liked them!
The restaurant has a bar at the front, normal dining room behind the bar, a conservatory and a charming courtyard garden boasting two olive trees. We sat in the conservatory overlooking the garden. There were no fans or air conditioning but with a small through breeze it was bearable.
We were served homemade warm bread. My olive bread was excellent and my companion enjoyed walnut and rosemary bread.
We ate off a set menu.
I got very excited because gazpacho was on the set menu so I chose that followed by fish and chips.
I expected a normal looking gazpacho, but got a bowl of dark red liquid drizzled with oil with a pale green ball floating in it. My companion remarked as I stared at it in horror ' you didn't read the menu properly did you?' I had not - and it clearly said 'gazpacho with basil sorbet' . Having identified what was in front of me I waded in saying ' That's OK I like basil' without pausing to think that ' sorbet' tends to be a sugar based solution. The gazpacho itself was delicious and very garlicky which I like. Unfortunately for my taste, the basil sorbet was very sweet. I did not enjoy my starter - but that was my fault not the restaurants'. Memo to self, when visiting 'foodie' restaurants read the menu carefully.
My main course was fish and chips. The fish was a nice piece of cod well cooked in a very sweet batter. I asked my long suffering companion whether the menu detailed the batter and he said it did not but he thought it was a beer batter which can be sweet. Fortunately this restaurant serves vinegar and tomato sauce without being huffy about it. The chips tasted just like chip shop chips.
I had said no to mushy peas with the fish and chips, but my companion reported that the smears on his plate were mushy peas whereas the bed of crushed peas under his fish were garden peas.
We both had sweets. My companion had a merangue ( I really must learn to spell food terms! ) with strawberry cream, mango and kiwi fruits. I had lemon cheesecake with raspberry sorbet and raspberry flour. The sweets were the perfect balance of sweet and sour . They looked and tasted divine.
I had a glass of Sicilian Pierro Sud Bianco. My companion had a glass of Spanish red - I think it was Rueda Poema (?).
This is a restaurant with an experimental chef so you need to read the menu very carefully. The chef seems to cook savoury courses rather on the sweet side for my taste.
The service was excellent.
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