Well hello there! It would appear as though it is my turn to indulge you all with a recent dining experience that I have had. So lend me you ears and I will tell you of the wonder that is The Tavern!
One of our favourite restaurants to pig out in is inconspicuously located along a side street in Cheltenham town centre. We have been back for many a meal since we first found it and even popped in for a spot of lunch yesterday as writing this piece got us craving for more! It is situated along a street I have walked (stumbled) down many times in the past. Usually in the early hours of the morning to pay a visit to the fish and chip shop located a few doors down from The Tavern after a night out in Cheltenham’s clubs.
When we first stepped inside the Tavern we were greeted by a rustically retro, low lit dining area (the Hollister of restaurants, if you will) that felt like you had just been transported to the trendy east side of London. What I like about The Tavern is not only the unique decor but the atmosphere created on the two different levels. The downstairs has a very chilled out feel with a sense of privacy for your dining party produced by the low lit lamps. Whilst upstairs allows you the treat of seeing and smelling the creation of your meals as you are seated next to the chef’s open plan kitchen.
After being quickly shown to our seats, the waitress returned a few minutes later with a big mug that was overflowing with popcorn, topped with melted chilli butter. The flavour was amazing and it was an unexpected but welcomed treat.
Once the popcorn had been devoured our attention quickly turned to drinks. To our surprise we were confronted by a list of carefully chosen, unconventional beers from around the world (USA, GERMANY, BELGIUM). We all opted for a draft beer from Belgium called Vedett. It was full of flavour and went down far too easily.
Drinks ordered and it was all eyes down for the main courses. We all agreed that instead of ordering starters we would instead share a large bowl of sticky chicken wings, which would later prove to be one of the best decisions we have ever made as I have never before or since had better, tastier wings.
The more I studied the menu the more I wanted every main course on it. To help me decide I asked the waitress if she could recommend anything. She said that the “French Dip” was very popular and once she started to describe the dish, I was sold. A lightly toasted bun filled with beef brisket, melted mature cheese, jalapeño peppers and an onion gravy dipping sauce. Chris chose the equally delicious Chilli Dog, which consisted of a paprika smoked hot dog in a lightly toasted bun covered with chilli and mature cheddar. Jamie opted for the more conventional 6oz Butts Farm beef burger with blue cheese, slaw and shoestring fries.
The food was delicious, the tender beef brisket melted in your mouth and with the addition of the peppers, mature cheddar and onion gravy the range of flavours worked perfectly.
When the time arrived to order desserts I resisted the temptation, but my ever reliable fellow food snobs were more than happy to satisfy their sugar cravings with a pud. They opted for the hot chocolate mousse. It arrived with a huge dollop of vanilla ice cream already seeping into the centre of the hot chocolate pudding. As you broke inside you were greeted with a rich melted chocolate centre, which tasted amazing when accompanied by the vanilla.
If you’re interested in sampling The Tavern soon, there are some great offers on at lunch time throughout the week and if you’re a big burger fan, Monday nights are Burger Night! Also every last Thursday of the month is live music night, so what more could you ask for? Great booze, fine food and the perfect atmosphere no matter what you’re celebrating!
We The Food Snobs x