Posted 17th October 2011
We were lucky enough to be invited to the launch of Jack’s Brassiere’s new autumn menu, and as we trudged along Bristol’s very blustery waterfront, it couldn’t have felt any more seasonal!
Thankfully though, it was a completely different story as soon as we arrived at Jack’s. The atmosphere was as warm as the welcome we received (the glass of pink champagne on arrival helped!), and having made ourselves comfy in the slick, stylish yet surprisingly cosy bar area, it wasn’t long before our gastronomic journey began!
The evening wasn’t just to celebrate Jack’s new seasonal menu, but also to introduce our fair city’s foodie community to the new executive chef, Simon Davis. Having previously worked as senior sous chef at Harvey Nichols 2AA rosette Second Floor Restaurant, it’s no surprise that Simon’s food is modern, innovative and dare I say it, of a much higher standard than I was initially expecting from Jack’s! In his own words, the new menu is a range of dishes “that make the most of what’s nest about the West with a contemporary twist” and I can assure you, Simon’s achieved this and then some!
If any of you are unfamiliar with Jack’s, it’s one of two-it’s sister restaurant resides on the up and coming Port Marine area of Portishead. The Bristol branch is nestled behind the Lloyd’s banking building off of Millennium Square, and I was somewhat saddened to hear that they currently close over the late winter months, as their simply isn’t enough passing trade! Hopefully however, this will change, as quite honestly, the food is nothing short of astounding. Perhaps it was the fact that I just wasn’t expecting it, or maybe it was because it was ‘opening night’ for the new menu, and everything had to be perfect, but irrespective of service, wine or atmosphere, Simon’s culinary skills alone were enough to assure that I want to eat here again.
As it was a tasting menu I won’t bore you with an in-depth analysis of each dish. Instead I’ll show you the pictures (far more exciting) and give you a whistle stop description if just why each course was better than the last!
Sweetcorn and sweet chilli chicken soup-So indulgent that it was probably a good thing we only had a tiny portion. Gorgeously creamy and perfectly seasoned-the addition of the shredded chilli chicken took this soup from great to brilliant!
Wines for the evening were selected and supplied by local wine distributors, Matthew Clark. Our sommelier for the evening, Sam, made sure each selection was described and the pairing between the wine and the course explained. For someone who doesn’t know half as much about wine as I’d like to, he made a sometimes mind-boggling subject surprisingly accessible and understandable.
So will I be going back to Jack’s again? Absolutely! Yes, we were extremely lucky to be invited to a one off taster menu, which showcased the very best that the menu has to offer, but this aside, it’s clear to see that everyone at Jack’s really ‘gets it’. The food is seasonal, local, and above all things, the staff seem really passionate about creating a restaurant where people will want to come to eat and drink again and again. With Simon and manager Tori at the helm, I’ve got a feeling that things at Jack’s are just going to get better and better.
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