98 High Street
Hampshire SO41 0QE
Tel: 01590 642176
Gluten free: Just ask
Parking: Public Car Parks
Wheelchairs: OK on top level
This restaurant features in our Discount Directory and is offering just for LWL Discount Card holders, a FREE coffee and chocolate with lunch on presentation of your card. If you don’t have a LWL Discount Card, click here to find out more – and start saving!
Last week we enjoyed yet another marvellous lunch at Verveine. David, the owner and our favourite chef (he’s twice been the winner of Hampshire Chef of The Year), invited us to see all the changes he has been making to both the décor (we approved) and of course more importantly to the menus!
The set lunch menu (it changes daily) is still on offer, excellent value at two courses for £17, three for £21 and is a great introduction to David’s innovative and creative style of cooking. He decided that we should have the lunch time tasting menu and that he would be choosing what it would include as it progressed. Apparently many of his regulars love this, they arrive and never know what they are going to eat… what fun, mystery dining!
We were given a pre-starter of Smoked mackerel pate in little flower pots covered with edible soil and planted with radishes, accompanied by fig granary & farmhouse white breads. We also tried David’s version of pork scratchings, the pork skin is dehydrated for three days then scraped then deep fried so you’ve only got the skin with no fat. Very light and fluffy so obviously no calories!
And then the delicious dishes just kept on coming…. A 63c local egg, Arbroath smokie and ratte potatoes (the only controversial dish as two of us are not egg lovers). Brixham crab chestnut, pear and parsnip. Lymington lobster, passion fruit, Serrano and white chocolate… the favourite! Pan fried scallops, laver bread and ventrenche ham porridge, 50 yr old balsamic vinegar. Roast Solent bass, mirin, soy, coriander and puffed rice, the next favourite! Then the puddings, Potato purée with Tahitian vanilla ice cream (yes potato & ice cream!) and finally Carrot cake.
David decided we hadn’t had enough so spoilt us with just a few petit fours! Malt marshmallows, Bergamot fruit pastel, Fisherman’s Friend meringue, Salted fudge with edible wrappers, White chocolate and Beetroot stones, Rhubarb doughnuts and Warm valrhona chocolate mousse….. yummeeee.
We accompanied our food with a bottle of Picpoul de Pinet Villemarin – Languedoc.
The only problem with Verveine is thinking of new superlatives to describe the eating experience in this unique restaurant! We were not surprised to hear that it has yet again been recommended in the Michelin Guide (after today’s delights it’s about time it had a star!), in Harden’s Guide and now, more importantly, by us!
Verveine is an attractive little restaurant, only about 30 covers. Our servers were lovely, efficient, knowledgeable and very friendly. We love the informality. Check out their website to read about events and special evenings, from wine tasting menus, cookery days and supper clubs, there’s always something interesting going on. And don’t forget there is a traditional fishmongers shop at the front of the restaurant. You can tell we love it and sure you will too!
Ladies Who Lunch Scoring: Verveine
5/5 Quality of food
5/5 Variety of menu
5/5 Staff and service
4/5 Ambiance and décor
5/5 Value for money (for the set lunch)
24/25 Total yummy factor. Review CJ
Ladies Who Lunch: score key
The higher the “Yummy” factor, the better the food and service.
The higher the number of £ signs the more expensive. (Roughly one £ sign = £5 per head).
5/5 Cannot be improved upon
4/5 Very good
If you visit, please tell them that Ladies Who Lunch in Hampshire sent you!