Tuesday, 29 November 2016


Sometimes when you're visiting a new city you might spend ages researching places to eat, getting
recommendations from friends and family or trawling the internet looking at reviews and pictures on Instagram. Sometimes though you should just wait until you get there and you never know what you might stumble across. That is what happened with The New Club, which we walked past on our way to our hotel in Brighton. It looked nice inside and the menu sounded delicious so we decided to walk back in the evening and give it a shot.

It was quite a mild evening when we strolled along the Brighton seafront to the corner of Kings Roads and Preston Street and through the doors of The New Club. Evening was upon us and so the lights were dimmed and as we were taken over to our table, a romantic candle was lit freshly for us. It was incredibly cozy and relaxing and I couldn't wait to get stuck into the menu. The New Club was opened after an inspiring trip to New York by the owners and this can been seen in the large mural on the far wall of the cities iconic residential building made famous by the likes of West Side Story. The fantastic views of the sea and the BA i360 tower are not very New York but they are beautiful.

Let's have a look at the drinks on offer now and there is an extensive list of delicious sounding cocktails at the New Club. So extensive, it was hard to choose but I settled on the cherry cola one. Arriving in a mini milk bottle with a cherry on top which I have to say is slightly hipstery but I will let them off as this Disaronno amaretto based  boozy creation containing Cherry Heering, cola syrup and lemon juice was scrumptious although I'd say it veered more towards tasting like a Bakewell tart. This is by no means a bad thing though as I do love a Bakewell. Note the word "mini" I've used there as well; oh how I wished it was bigger.

We also ordered on of the "Mangoritas", a twist on the classic frozen Margarita. This El Jimador tequila based cocktail mixes together frozen mangoes with freshly squeezed orange and lime juice to create a fabulous brain freeze inducing treat which is further enhanced when you lash that straw to one side and sip the cocktail through the chilified rim of the glass. The coldness of the cocktail with the heat of the chili work perfectly together leaving a slight tingly feeling on your lips and tongue that is weird but for some reason you keep coming back for more! The prefect start to a meal.
Speaking of the meal; let's talk about the food. We went for a whole host of small plates. I say small, but they were quite hefty portions. Two plates per diner would be enough but we were little piggies and went for three. I went with the old bay spiced tiger prawns which were tasty however the star of the plate was the black bean and pomegranate seed salsa which sat on the side. It was fresh, vibrant and a proper revelation. This is something I will definitely be trying at home. The chorizo croquette it was served with was also a treat. Light and fluffy, I could of eaten another two or three of these bad boys! 

Next up to the table was our next vegetarian dish. This trio of tasty balls were the zucchini (I'll let them off with the Americanism as they are going for a New York vibe!) and feta fritters. They were not what I was expecting to land on the table when we ordered them but in a good way. I expected a crispy, greasy bhaji style affair but instead these were massive balls of soft and fluffy yumminess. Yes, the outsides were crispy but they were so light and when you dip them into the dill mayonnaise, well then they really do takeoff flavor wise. This dinner was looking like it was going to be a good 'un.

Next up was the crispy pork belly. Crispy on the menu; definitely crispy on the plate. Top marks for that crackling sat on top of two beautifully cooked pieces of pork belly which shredded away from the skin as you glided your knife and fork through it. I love apple sauce with pork and the apple puree on this plate was like the best apple sauce ever. Delightfully smooth and packed full of fruity flavor, I made sure every last drop was mopped up with the pork belly. Add to the plate candied walnuts and a smattering of anise jus and you have a perfectly balanced plate of porky perfection.

Back to the veggie dishes with this BBQ halloumi. Let me start by saying there was no hint of a squeak on that cheese, it was cooked to perfection. I'm not a fan of satay sauce usually but I really enjoyed the satay glaze on this dish. Does that make it the best satay I've ever had? Quite possibly. To offset the nutty flavors of the satay, the halloumi sat on a refreshing salad of cous cous, quinoa, coriander and pomegranate seeds that cleanses the palette ready for the next bite of cheese. It's an accompaniment that I'll be trying to recreate at home that's for sure!

For our final meaty main dish I went for more seafood (well we were by the sea!) and chose the crispy chili salt squid. This is the best example of how the New Club's term of small plate is stretched to the limit, this was quite an ample serving. Do not chose this plate if you're not super super hungry! Me? I ate the whole lot of course. I was expecting the squid to be thin rings like calamari but these were proper plump chunks of squid meat that were just divine! Squeeze a bit of lemon juice over them and dip them into the tom yum aioli and prepare to taste the magic!

I've saved our final veggie dish until last as it was the highlight of the night. This dish is titled beets, goats curd and polenta. Not only does it look like something you would get in a fine dining restaurant but the taste matched the quality of the presentation. The little crispy slices of beets were a stand out whilst the combination of the exquisite truffled and whipped goats curd coupled with a smoked goats curd was a match made in heaven. Add to this some fried polenta and some more of those candied walnuts as featured on the pork belly dish and you have the most scrumptious vegetarian dish I have seen in a long time. Magnificent!

You would think after all that food that there wouldn't be any room for a dessert. Well you would be wrong! I decided to top off this fine feast with a New York cheesecake. A totally smooth and creamy slab of cheesecake stood proudly in the centre of the plate surrounded by crispy little nuggets of apple meringue sat on top of tangy rhubarb compote. To add a bit of creaminess to the dish, a dollop of vanilla ice cream was scooped next to cheesecake to make this a balanced dessert full of different flavors and textures. A fabulous way to round off a fabulous meal.

By this point we were well and truly stuffed so we settled our bill and headed back out onto the Brighton seafront for a brisk walk back to our hotel. The New Club may be more well known in Brighton for its breakfast and brunch menu but I think it's time their dinner offerings had the spot light shone on them as they were all incredible. I'm so pleased that I walked past them on the way to our hotel otherwise we would never of had this amazing meal! The vegetarian options in particular were all unique and exciting whilst the cocktails make it a great place to dine if you are celebrating a special occasion with friends and family. The New Club is one club in Brighton I'll be coming back to again and again.

What some more information about the New Club? Head on over to their website by clicking here.

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