Dining out at The Norfolk Mead Hotel, Coltishall

Thursday, June 26, 2014

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Way back on 31st May we visited the Norfolk Mead Hotel in Coltishall for our wedding anniversary celebration meal. We chose to try the Norfolk Mead as a recommendation from a friend, apparently the food was really good so we decided to wait for a special occasion based excuse to eat at somewhere on the pricier end of our eating-out spectrum.

Norfolk Mead Hotel Coltishall

Mr Hungry booked a table ridiculously early as he doesn't seem to grasp that you tend to eat later if you eat out. Hence why we arrived and there was nobody else around (which made trying to get some pictures SO much easier thankfully).

Upon arrival we were taken to the bar for a chance to sit in the comfy chairs whilst we were able to peruse the menus and nibble on the scrumptious cheese straws and what Chris assures me were tasty olives. As I was DES, I plumped for an orange juice to start with and then during the meal ordered a sparkling elderflower drink which was perfect. Chris had an ale to start with then a glass of red wine with his meal but his memory does not reach far enough back to remember names, but he says the wine was fabulous.

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After having to decide between the choice of two home baked breads (I'm sure poppy seeds, rosemary, cheese and onion were mooted but I've long since forgotten which combinations they came in). Me and him went for different ones each and set about dunking the still-warm slices into the balsamic oil, which was simply scrummy.

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I should point out JUST how long Chris took to choose his starter and main, it was ages. The menu was longer than many, considering the dishes were what I would classify as complex. I believe the menu is an ever changing thing, different dishes come and go depending on what is seasonally available which is as it ought to be in my book. Who wants to be faced with the same dishes time after time?

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For starters I ordered the home smoked sea trout with pickled vegetables and beetroot puree. It was such a pretty, pretty plate of food. Almost too good to touch but I easily managed to persuade myself to destroy it piece by piece. Remember how I didn't used to like fish? Well, finding dishes that really work is key to changing your taste. Oh, it was a delight. The trout was exactly what I was hoping for and the pickled veg just lovely, no coughing with too much pickle. I was so glad I chose this dish and would merrily order it again.

Chris chose the pork belly and duck terrine with homemade chutney. He enjoyed it very much but I was glad I hadn't chosen this one because it did look quite heavy as a starter.

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The mains were the hardest to choose and while I was sorely tempted by the chicken and especially the duck breast I just couldn't resist the draw of the pork belly.

Pork three ways: apricot stuffed pork fillet, braised pig cheek, crispy pork belly with potato galette, sour apple puree, red cabbage and calvados jus.

It didn't disappoint and was thoroughly enjoyable with plenty of that marvellous liquor. Empty plate!

Chris settled on the steak (which was supposed to come with truffle mash) and large cut chips, asparagus, one large mushroom and peppercorn sauce and an unexpected vine of tomatoes. The steak did look and Chris said although he asked for the steak medium, he considered it arrived well done but as it was such a thick piece it was fine and remained succulent.

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Skipping dessert was never really going to happen, was it?

I chose lemon posset with a shortbread (arrived with red berries and jus) which was refreshing and particularly pleasant. Chris selected the chocolate torte with vanilla bean ice cream which he liked.

The service was first class, we saw three different people throughout the evening and they were all most polite, attentive and professional. The young chap was a standout, he even rescued my jacket from the bar when I had absent-mindedly abandoned it in favour of good food (can you blame me?)

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The only negative we had, which this was based on the night we dined (a Saturday evening) was that considering the price we paid for the meal (pretty high by our standards but I imagine most peoples' too) we had hoped for a quiet time in the dining room. There was a table of 10 or 12 having a 70th birthday meal (or something to that effect) and there were children sometimes loud, adults laughing and cackling which is not out of place anywhere and no detraction from the Norfolk Mead but sometimes you do just want a quiet, romantic meal and question just how much you have to pay to achieve this.

In terms of the prices, they were not insignificant (three courses for £32), but they were justified with the high quality food, excellent service and beautiful surroundings. I was happy with the time we spent there and would be pleased to return on another special occasion.

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The hotel itself was decorated neutrally and tastefully with lovely comfortable furniture and is clearly well cared for, situated in landscaped grounds with the river flowing along the boundary. We did take a swift stroll around but the light was fading fast so I wasn't able to capture the grounds well at all.

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The walled garden has clearly been recently re-landscaped at was so pretty! There was a party taking place in the garden room wedding venue and it really looked delightfully romantic on the summer's evening.

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I wore my new fuchsia colour lace skater dress (proper post to come on that at some point) with my midnight blue velvet jacket and green clutch (both presents) and Matalan shoes.

A rather splendid way to celebrate our anniversary indeed.

Sophie

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7 comments

  1. I went to primary school in Coltishall :) (sorry just a random nonsense fact for you there!)

    My parents (who still live in Norfolk) have said that the Norfolk Mead is supposed to be good.

    I always purposely book a table early when I'm blogging, I love the freedom it gives me to run about the restaurant with my camera like a crazy lady, it's just impossible to do that when there's other people eating.

    I think they do afternoon tea there which I'm pretty intrigued about. I did half think about going there when we're back in Norfolk next week but I'm not completely sure we'll have the time now :(

    Chloe x
    newgirlintoon.co.uk


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  2. It sounds lovely! The food looks good!!! Who had the chocolate cake? I'd have gone for that! X

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  3. You look beautiful Sophie and so does the food, especially your pork main meal...yum!

    Gems x
    Fashion, Well Done

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  4. The food looks yummy and served very prettily too. And of course you look stunning, perfect for an anniversary meal.

    X x

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  5. I'm hungry now.
    This looks lovely, it's nice to slash out a bit once in a while. Although I couldn't cope with a menu that's too long, it takes me ages to decide on what to eat!

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  6. I live quite close to The Norfolk Mead but haven't visited for a few years - I understand it has new owners now. It was great to see your review, it looks like it's had quite a re-vamp. I hope to go there sometime in the future, although it has to be, as you say, for a special occasion.

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  7. Oh my all that food looks incredible! You look gorgeous too!

    Katie <3

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Sometimes I am sent items to feature as part of a post and these will be clearly mentioned as part of each post.Everything else is bought by myself. Any sponsored or collaboration posts will be clearly marked. Each post is my own content and all opinions are honest.