Wednesday, 4 June 2014

New Restaurant in Town!

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Last night we decided to celebrate Nathan's company - Jigsaw School Apps - getting its first ever independent review - and go out for dinner! We had popped into Café Michelangelo a few weeks ago to see Mike Muir, the proprietor, who told us that he was changing Michelangelo's from a café to Bistro Michelangelo. It is situated in The Ironmarket - with tables and chair outside for anyone who wants to sit and watch the world go by.

Nathan had known Mike and his wife Gaynor, since he lived in Leek and used to go to Café David frequently - which Mike used to own and run back then. Then Mike moved onto Café David and Trentham - which he sold and moved into Newcastle to Café Michelangelo. It has been open during the day serving sandwiches, cakes and drinks - we have been in for one of his legendary hot chocolates before!


He told us that he's been persuaded by a business partner to re-open as a restaurant. I had been once to Café David in Leek and the food had been gorgeous so we resolved to go back once he was up and running with his new chef, Colin, making evening meals. We took a chance on Tuesday night and not only was he open but he found us a table right away.

Having ordered a bottle of Prosecco, he returned from the bar to say that it wasn't quite chilled enough yet so would we mind if he upgraded us to Champagne. Needless to say - we didn't mind at all! We sipped it while we chose from the comprehensive menu.

Nathan decided on a goat's cheese and caramelised red onion filo tart while I was feeling a bit chilly so opted for the hearty pea and ham soup. They were both beautifully presented, my soup was smooth, hot and very tasty and came with some toasted baguette. Just what I needed. Nathan was making very appreciative noises over his tart, which was sweet and tangy and light. We were very impressed so far!

For a main N went for the cod loin with chorizo and tomato sauce. I decided to go for the roast chicken fillet with stilton sauce, twice-cooked chips tomato and mushroom. Again they were both presently really well on wide long plates. The chicken was really nicely cooked, piping hot and moist and tasted wonderful with stilton sauce. The crispy chips were so soft and fluffy inside. You didn't need many as they were just a perfect complement to the rest of the dish.

Mike was attentive throughout, topping up our glasses when they threatened to get empty.

To get the full experience we thought we'd better try a dessert too. I had an inkling that Nathan might go for the chocolate brownie - which came square and flat, studded with walnuts and topped with Cheshire ice cream. I didn't try any - but N said it was really good.

I tied the fruit crumble of the day - which was strawberry and apple. There was an abundance of fruit, warm and sweet and not too much crumble - just a sprinkling on top. I also got some Cheshire ice cream too!

Cool new interior
We had a chat with Mike before we left and asked after Gaynor, his wife. I've seen her a few times at the hospital - as she runs Fresh Hair - the wig and treatment salon in the Cancer Centre. He told us that the fundraising for a brand new premises in the hospital grounds had been so successful that they are beginning the new building very soon. At the moment they are still in a corner of the chemo ward. They provide a great service - I can't tell you how much better I felt when I had my wigs.

Bistro Michelangelo is still open all day too and provide the daytime menu as normal. They've had quite a lot of interest so far from their daytime customers - who try the evening one and then are returning and bringing friends with them! We are thinking of taking friends with us next time. We can't wait to try other things on the menu!

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