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Cafe Rouge, Cribbs Causeway, New Autumn Set Menu Review 11th October 2017

Café Rouge, Cribbs Causeway, New Autumn Set Menu Review 
Café Rouge’s new autumn set menu has been launched across all their restaurants and being at The Mall at Cribbs Causeway for some necessary shopping (stout boots for scuffing through the leaves on those crisp late October days even though on the way I heard there was another heat wave coming!) we called in for an early supper. Earlier than expected, as my husband had barked the terse order ‘step away from the Christmas decorations woman, it’s only October’ so I was crestfallen but ready to be cheered up by a nice meal.

With its red and white checked chairs, umbrellas and red banquette seating, the restaurant defies the indoor location and has a nice pavement café atmosphere. The service here is always excellent; we received a cheery welcome and were shown to our table in minutes to be looked after by a friendly and most amusing waiter which always helps to enhance your evening.

The set menu is excellent value, two courses for £10.95, with three for £13.95; and the dishes all of French origin. To start we chose, soup de saison with butternut squash and sage, served with crème fraîche and toasted pumpkin seeds, served with rye and caraway bread, and pork rillettes made to a traditional Lille recipe served with shallot and raison chutney. It was a toss- up between moules and steak frites for my husband for main course, and the prospect of a good steak and chips won out. I’m a great casserole fan, so I ordered chicken chasseur, slow-cooked chicken in white wine sauce, with smoked bacon and mushrooms, tomatoes, thyme and tarragon served with herb mash.

We enjoyed our starters; the soup was rich and hearty with delightful crusty bread, and the rillettes were as good as any we’d eaten in France, and paired well with the wholesome chutney. There was a decent interval between the starter and main course which is always the best for digestion in my opinion and when they arrived we were fully ready to tuck in. The chicken chasseur was lovely, a large quarter of tender chicken slowly cooked in the rich sauce with creamy mashed potato just waiting to mop up the sauce. The steak frites was great too, a 5oz British ‘minute’ steak cooked perfectly and polished off, if not in minutes, with great gusto.

We decided to be bad people and add a dessert to our meal; rhubarb and plum crumble served with crème anglaise (custard to the uninitiated) did it for me, and scoops of vanilla and strawberry ice-cream for him. We had a lovely evening and enjoyed the set menu very much.

Jacquie Vowles
Café Rouge, Cribbs Causeway, New Autumn Set Menu Review 

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