Thursday, 26 February 2015


It's great to see Liverpool's food scene expanding especially those small independent eateries choosing to open their doors away from the crowds of Liverpool One. Strolling to work the other day I saw a sign urging me to walk up Gradwell street to Epicured. Describing themselves as an "independent, pocket sized and unique destination" for lunch I thought it would be a fabulous place to take breather from work and treat myself to a little me time. So off I popped. Literally a stones throw away from Hanover street I walked in to a warm and friendly welcome.

Epicured has only been open for a couple of weeks so it was quiet for a lunch time so I had pick of seats. I took to a corner with quite possibly the worlds softest cushion to survey my surroundings. The decor is delightful. Urban with touches of a deli, a large stuffed Micky Mouse hung from the ceiling surveys the relaxed environment. Chalk boards display specials and delicious looking cakes line the counter. It's a perfect venue for a casual lunch with friends.

I was in a sweet mood so I went for the granola. Arriving at the table in a pretty kilner jar it looked stunning. The berries were vibrant and burst with fruity goodness in my mouth. The sweet apple on top was incredible, I either want to know how they make them or were they are from as I could of eaten them on their own. The granola pieces had the right balance between chewy and crunchy whilst whole nuts gave it the added crunch that was needed to mix up the texture from the Greek yogurt. With a good glug of honey to ramp up the sweetness to just the right level, it was a little jar of heaven. A perfect way to really spoil yourself at lunch time.

As an avid green tea drinker it's great to see it available on the menu and given the attention it deserves rather than just flung in a cup and covered in water.In fact they deliver it to the table as a mug of boiling hot water that you place the tea bag in yourself. First I thought this was strange however it's actually a nice touch as it lets you brew the tea to the strength you like and the large tray it came in means you have ample space to dump your tea bag once your done. Giving a slice of lemon on the side to add sweetness is a small but once again nice touch and it's these finishing touches that really set a place apart from your bog standard coffee chain.

Now normally I would tell you about what my dining companion had eaten but this was some alone time for little old me. I had really enjoyed my little treat to myself but thought if this was just a lucky shot as it was quiet. There was only one thing for it; give them a second go the next day. It's hard work being a food blogger you know!

So the next day off I trotted again and this time decided to savory and chose the smashed avocado and black pepper on charred bread with a slither of marmite and optional added feta. On first bite I confirmed that lightning does indeed strike in the same place twice. I was intrigued by the flavor combinations but it's such a perfect match that I plan to try and recreate it. The zing of the marmite compliments the salty feta and a quick squeeze of lime over the avocado creates something that really is sensational. Get yourself down to Epicured now and try it. Trust me!

I also got a nice little nibble of popcorn. Again, another nice little touch that a great way to tie you over until the main event arrives. What was also positive to see on my second visit was two groups of other punters enter through the doors. I'm hoping that this will be a sign of things to come and over time Epicured will become packed every day as going my two lunch time experiences it certainly deserves to be. It would be a shame to see this little gem fall at the first hurdle like so many new starters. Don't worry if you can't make lunch, why not come after 12:30pm and give the afternoon menu a go!

I couldn't leave a second time and pass up on a cake. As I went to pay I decided to look at what was on offer at the counter today. I decided to pass on the scrumptious looking cookies and picked the vanilla cream sponge with cream and hazelnuts. Back at my desk I tucked in the sponge which was so light that it near enough melted in my mouth. Before I knew it I had shoved it all in my face in a minute of pure cakey bliss. If they make themselves then I also need to recipe for this bad boy as it's out of this world. Even if you can't stop in for lunch, run in a grab one of these cakes to take out and enjoy a slice of heaven at home!

When I left the first day I was asked how I had heard about Epicured. I'm a foodie so I always have my eye on whats around but I know not everyone is the same. By reading this review I'm hoping that you will take some time to stray from the beaten path and show some support to a local independent business. Not just because it's a trendy thing to do but because Epicured is incredible. Food, staff and atmosphere made me come twice in two days! That's a sign of quality. Next time your in Liverpool, go and track them down for an "Epic" lunch time feast.

For more info on this fab little eatery then check out their website and Twitter

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