Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Brown Bear

Review of The Brown Bear

Location: Two Mile House, Naas, Co. Kildare
Price Range: ****
Service: *****
Type: French/Gourmet/Fancy-Schmancy (But in a good way - they won’t kick you out for wearing jeans!)

Bucket List: Absolutely
Mmm Rating: 4.5 (Could only fault the waitress in accepting our request for more bread which led to our untimely fullness, eliminating all possibility of dessert!)

This is fast becoming a local haunt in horsey country, with superb food, service and atmosphere. We visited TBB on the evening of Saturday 6th November after hearing about their 3 Courses for €28 deal or 2 for €23. While we know this is not the cheapest deal in town - the food, the food & THE FOOD.

We have a thing about bread, thankfully so do our friends at the Brown Bear. After ordering our starters and mains our waitress brought over a basket laden with CARB-DELIGHTS (all homemade that day) including tomato and rosemary bread, parmesan rolls, thin French stick, and a few seedy, wholemeal types for those healthy people...cannot recommend highly enough the tomato and rosemary and getting seconds from the waitress!

Ev started with the pumpkin soup with chestnut gnocchi (very seasonal) which was simply delicious, just the right portion size considering the huge main course to follow.  Although Ev never had “pumpkin-soup” before and was sceptical about whether she would like it or not, it was smooth, rich and warming and she thoroughly enjoyed it.
I (Matt) had the home-reared Pork with lots of tasty sauces and flavours. Can’t remember all the little garnishes however it was certainly tasty. (On a note- the pigs are fed with the leftovers from the restaurant, leading to their happy existenceJ )

Main Courses:
We were both boring and unadventurous and went for the Herefordshire beef which was served in rich red wine gravy with onions and carrots accompanying. We also ordered Colcannon and green beans on the side- The colcannon is exceptional, best I’ve ever had. It is all the things you want in a colcannon - a hearty, bacon-y, cheesy, CARB-DELIGHT! The green beans were well seasoned, flavoursome and al-dente.
The Beef was very soft and tender and surprisingly filling (for people who’d be known for finishing their dinners as kids – and adults) and neither were able to finish (SHOCK HORROR!)

While we normally always at least look at the dessert menu, we were quite stuffed from the mains, sides and THE BREAD and didn’t indulge any further. However from dining here on previous occasions we can testify to the stand-out quality of the innovative desserts on offer at this restaurant.

As always the staff, Sheila, Eugene, Jean and the chef Fred were exemplary. Jean was attentive while waiting on our table, addressed us by name and thanked us profusely for our custom.

The room is dark (as in mood-enhancing, romantic dark...not didn’t pay ESB dark) filled with old world style furniture which is classy and comfortable. It holds with it a level of character normally reserved for long established eateries such as Roleys. Both the restaurant and bar are homely and welcoming, a surprising trait to discover in a business only opened a year.

We paid €67 total for Starters, Mains, Side Dishes, a glass of wine, bottle of water and my patented Jameson with a dash of lime

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