7th June 2017 7pm
Four of us had purchased two Itison vouchers for Cadiz. The deal included a cocktail, a four course meal and tea/coffee for two. On arrival, our special menus were waiting for us on the table. The menu was shorter than the normal menu at Cadiz but there was still plenty of showcasing of their normal dishes within it. I was a bit disappointed to see that all the cocktails were ‘twists’ and had some kind of wine in them, so was going to opt for a soft drink but our server was very accommodating and said it was not a problem to adapt one of the cocktails so there was no wine in it. I appreciated this gesture. So three of us had the mojito and one went for the bloody mary. We automatically would be receiving a fish and shellfish soup amuse bouche but we were able to choose our other courses. I went for asparagus with a poached egg to start, followed by mussels in a white wine, fresh cream and shallot sauce. My friends went for a calamari and padron peppers for their starters and then mussels in a white wine, chorizo and chilli sauce and the arroz for their mains.
The amuse bouche came out and was a generous size considering the course. We were also given a plate of crispy croutons with aioli to share between two. The soup itself was rich brown in colour and hidden in its depths was a plethora of seafood. The croutons were as crispy as advertised and the aioli was beautiful, with a delightful richness of garlic. Thumbs up all round.
Our starters all looked great as they were brought to the table. My asparagus was coated with a hollandaise sauce. The poached egg oozed golden loveliness as I cut into it. A simple, yet effective, dish. Two friends had chosen the calamari, which would have been my backup choice. This was served with a lemon, neatly wrapped in muslin and tied off with a ribbon. The calamari had a sprinkling of sea salt and chilli on top and had a luscious smoked paprika aioli for the calamari to be dipped into. They were not chewy and the batter was of excellent quality. Across from me, another friend was busing herself with eating the padron peppers. This was a large portion, with about 8 peppers in total. These again were sprinkled with sea salt and went down a treat.
The generous sizing continued when our mains arrived. Three of us had mussels with one or other of the sauces. These were in very large bowls and were served with a side of fries. We all thought the mussels were excellent. Mine were plump and juicy. The sauces were also exceptional, although I think the white wine, cream and shallot sauce I chose was the winner (as the other two tasted the sauce too). It provided a good base to dunk the fries in. The mussels were also available as a starter but served with crusty bread rather than fries. The last of our group had the arroz, which is an arborio rice dish, served with king prawns and clams. This was a homely yet pretty dish and whilst rice was the main component of the plate of food, there was plenty of seafood mixed through it too. Overall, I think my only complaint was that there was no finger bowl or finger wipes after the mussels, so your hands were left a bit sticky (particularly if you are like us and use a mussel shell for your cutlery).
We had to wait a little bit until the staff came to tell us about dessert. We had the option of a crème brulee or a white chocolate and vanilla cheesecake. Three of us went for the brulee, with a lone friend picking the cheesecake. What surprised me on delivery of the brulees was that they were on fire. In an unusual method, instead of blow torching the sugar in the kitchen, it was happening in front of our eyes at the table. We were advised to wait for it to go out and then wait for another minute to ensure the crack of the surface when diving in with your spoon. Whilst it unnerved me a little, having a flame in front of me, once it went out and duly waited, the crack came, along with a gloriously delicious custard. Simplicity at its finest. There were a couple of chocolate cake type balls served on the side of the brulee. These were a bit dry, which was a shame. The cheesecake was also good. This came with a raspberry coulis and raspberries placed on top. This was a solid effort, although my friend was unable to finish it. After, teas and coffees were sipped before we left for the evening.
We really enjoyed our meal at Cadiz. Generally the staff were very attentive and seemed to predict our every need, with the wait for dessert being the only, very minor, blip. If you like seafood, this is worth a visit.
Food – 9/10
Service – 9/10
Atmosphere – 8/10
Value – 8/10
Overall – 34/40
Would I eat here again? Yes.
Cost – The deal cost £98 for the two vouchers plus a further £15 for a couple more cocktails. The full price would have been closer to £153 for the four of us.