Just What The Botanist Ordered
West Bridgford was the latest UK town to welcome artisan bistro The Botanist to their streets this month. Coming from an award winning franchise, which boasts branches in London’s Sloane Square, York, and Manchester, we at Visit Nottinghamshire had been highly anticipating The Botanist’s arrival and certainly weren’t disappointed!
Located just ten minutes from Nottingham city centre on the town’s main thoroughfare Bridgford Road, The Botanist is a complimentary addition to the existing strip of bars and restaurants, which offer a relaxed and chic night out for those seeking an alternative to the city centre bustle.
Along with stunning cocktails and delicious food, the sumptuous surroundings were interesting, classy and comfortable, and the live music a perfect background to our dinner.
Read on to see what we thought!
Annette: A fabulous venue that blends with old with the new. The botanical theme, with a nod to Nottingham, creates a relaxed pub environment. Being a ‘school night’ I opted for a delicious mocktail – a raspberry, grape and elderflower cooler – however you can enjoy around 45 cocktails, all based around fresh herbs, including martinis, long drinks and a selection of cocktails served in “watering can” for up to four to share.
Jayne: If you’re a fan of stunning interior design (check out the chandelier made of lampshades and oil cans!), this bar should definitely be on your hit list. Smoking – literally – cocktails and food served in wheelbarrows and picnic baskets adds to the feeling that this place is a significant addition to South Nottinghamshire’s enviable food and drinks scene. My recommendations – The Botanist signature cocktail, salt and pepper onion petals with crème fraiche and scampi with seasoned fries. There’s no wonder there’s already a waiting list for tables!
Alex: The Botanist is a must for those who love unusual flavours and even more unusual drinking vessels (think test tubes and terracotta pots). The cocktails that I tried from the menu were all delicious and it was great to try flavours that you wouldn’t normally experience from a standard cocktail. I would definitely recommend the ‘Botanist Pornstar’, which was a refreshing take on a classic.
In terms of the The Botanist’s food offering, I was a big fan of the nibbles. Served in quirky ways such as apple sauce in a miniature wheelbarrow, it was great fun eating them and certainly made them a talking point. My favourite was the crispy whitebait, served with super tasty saffron mayo.
The Botanist is definitely worth a visit – even if you’re not a huge fan of cocktails, there is an impressive selection of beers and lagers on offer and the interior is simply brilliant.
Sarah: As soon as I arrived at the beautifully designed new Botanist, I had cocktail envy. Around the room gorgeous looking people were sipping on curious looking concoctions with fruit spilling out of unusual shape glasses. I had to have some of the action! My cocktail of choice was the English Mojito. Gin, apple liqueur and apple juice replace rum and soda usually found in a mojito giving a fruity twist to this classic. It was refreshing and made to perfection, i hope i inspired other onlookers to try it too.
For my main course I picked jerk salmon from the ‘hanging kebabs’ section of the menu. It looked fantastic when it arrived, but it didn’t last long! Big chunks of salmon, in a sweet chilli and ginger sauce along with some chips and a side of broccoli. If I had it again I wouldn’t pour the little pot of butter which comes with it over the top as I’m not sure it goes with the sweet chilli and ginger very well, and I’m not sure jerk is the same as sweet chilli is it? but otherwise and nonetheless i thought it was delicious, flavoursome and filling.
I was enjoying myself so much I had to polish off the evening with a desert, sticky toffee pudding with vanilla ice cream, the dessert of the gods. This one didn’t disappoint. It was just everything you want from a sticky toffee pudding, good old comfort food.
To top off great food the Botanist offered a great atmosphere in stylish new surroundings, it will be a welcome edition to the foodie and night time scene in West Bridgford and Nottingham which I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend. I hope to visit again soon.
Alistair: It’s always exciting to try somewhere new – especially when it’s somewhere as quirky and stylish as the Botanist. I’m not a huge cocktail fan so I was delighted to see a huge collection of beers – from Nottingham favourites like Castle Rock to funky craft beers from every corner of the world. The Botanist certainly takes its beers seriously and we were soon joined by their resident beer guru, who explained what to look for in a good beer, and shared some unusual options, like Modus Operandi, a barrel-aged beer with an acquired, almost winey taste. The food was delicious – perfectly cooked steak and chips followed by cookie dough goodness for me – and there was a great atmosphere with attentive staff and live music to enjoy. I’m sure we’ll all be back!
A huge thank you to all the staff at The Botanist. We shall definitely be back!