If you think about festivals in October you might be tempted to veer in the direction of beer, but I’m here to tell you about something (IMHO) that is way better, heading your way and landing on your plates in October.
Clued-up foodies already know about the gastronomic gem that is October Best – which for those in the dark is just over a fortnight’s worth of eating at some of the best restaurants in the city of Brighton & Hove for just twenty quid a head. And yesterday I got invited to test drive one of the menus, at one of my favourite restaurants, the Gingerman.
I don’t get invited out so much any more these days, as I tend to work on the business rather than in it, and I do less and less writing, sadly. So I was dead chuffed to get this invite. I’m fan of pretty much all the restaurants in the scheme (details below) but how lovely to trial one of the lunches. And even get to write about it.
The Gingerman, which I still see as the flagship of the Ginger group, used to be a much more regular haunt when I lived in Hove, and I still love it. They wanted to trial their October Best menu, see whether it was a good balance of size and quality.
I’m here to tell you right now that it’s overwhelmingly good value for money – with little canapes to start (something fishy, something cheesy, something ducky – all delish) and sourdough rolls with truffled butter.
And that’s before you get stuck into the Lancing College Farm rare breed pork in all its various forms. Those forms being loin, crackling, black pudding, croquettes, confit belly and a jug of unctuous, rich gravy reduction heaven. See top picture for more drooling opportunity.
There’s all sorts of other bits on the plate too – mash, a chunk of caramelised apple… The Gingerman menu is a sharing platter for two and is already nearly booked up, so I’d get in there fast if this has made your mouth water.
The £20 menus also includes a glass of wine each. Because we were having a special showing-off type treat yesterday they also included one of their famed soufflés for us – a fluffy cloud of whipped wonder with white choc ice cream and crunchy praline. I’ve told you about this because you should know about it, but be aware this would be extra, it’s not included in the set menu. But at twenty quid a head, why wouldn’t you splurge on a pudding on top? Frankly the value for money is ridiculous
There isn’t a duff monkey in any of the restaurants listed for this year’s October Best. You can book online, and the food across the board is going to be exemplary. Not that they’re competing or anything but hey, an initiative like this raises everyone’s game.
October Best is 5-21 October across Brighton & Hove
For more information go to the October Best site and book
For the Gingerman click here