In case you haven’t heard, Liverpool has a bustling food scene. When most people think of food in the UK it might be London that would spring to mind, or perhaps Birmingham or even Padstow. Of course London has all the big name chefs located there, Birmingham is well known for it’s Balti Triangle and Padstow has been put on the map thanks to Rick Stein, but Liverpool is certainly one to add to the list if you’re interested in food tourism. Often considered a rough and ready city, it has changed dramatically since becoming the European Capital of Culture in 2008.
Rocket and Ruby
Rocket and Ruby (55 Castle St, Liverpool) is the new kid on the block in Liverpool, having only opened a few months ago. But it’s certainly making an impression on the scene. We came here for brunch and were blown away by the choux buns. They’re packed with so much flavour! The brunch menu is filled with the usual staples- bakery items, French toast, obligatory avocado on toast as well as other toast offerings, overnight oats, smoothies and brioche rolls enticingly filled with delicious ingredients. To top it off, the staff were super friendly and attentive. Two choux buns, a pot of tea and an orange juice came to approx. €16.
(Portobello mushroom, scrambled eggs & Gruyere Filled Hot Choux Buns.)
When I last visited Liverpool, I was impressed by the food at Mowgli (69 Bold Street, Liverpool). I was especially enamored with the yoghurt chat bombs- crispy puffs (puri) filled with yoghurt, tamarind, chickpeas and coriander. Utterly delightful! Needless to say it was on top of the list of things to order when we arrived. Mowgli specialises in small plates of Indian food, so it’s perfect for sharing with friends, which was evident during our lunchtime visit with tables full of friends sharing countless dishes. So much so that it was tricky getting a table and we had to perch on the bench by the window. So if you’re thinking of visiting, consider coming in early or making a booking. Four dishes, roti, lassi and a sparkling water came to approx. €32.
(Yoghurt chat bombs.)
Located on the 34th floor of the West Tower, overlooking the Mersey and the city centre, is Panoramic 34 (Brook street, Liverpool). The views are absolutely stunning and the great food does the experience justice. The menu is modern European, with lovely little twists to keep a diner guessing throughout their meal. An example was the roast onion starter, which listed puff pastry as an ingredient on the menu and would allude to a traditional puff pastry base with roasted onion on top. What was presented was a refined dish with small shards to puff pastry underneath a roast onion shell filled with onion puree. Exceptional. All dishes were beautifully presented. A three course meal for two, with wine came to approx. €110.
(Spiced apple rice.)
One thing I’ve noticed about Liverpool, is that they love to eat out! During our visit to Moose Coffee (Dale street, Liverpool) I got the sense that pretty much everyone in Liverpool was vying for a seat in this cafe at the exact same moment as us resulting in queues out the door. Thankfully the professional staff keep this well oiled machine ticking along nicely. The service was amazing; friendly and welcoming, extremely efficient without ever making you feel like you need to get out the door quickly. I take my hat off to them. The menu comprises typical American fare done very well and the decor matches it perfectly. Two dishes, an orange juice and a pot of tea came to approx. €22.
(American pancakes with smoked streaky bacon and Canadian maple syrup.)
Another restaurant that’s focusing on small plates is Bacaro (47 Castle street, Liverpool.) Walking in through the doors, you get the sense that this is the perfect place for a date; mood lighting with a good distance between the tables to have an intimate conversation whilst sharing delicious Italian food. Their menu featureses pizzettes, charcuterie, a selection of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes, as well as a Bellini and Campari bar. The stand out dish was the Butternut squash, dolce latte and red wine risotto, so good that I hope to try to replicate it myself soon. We shared six dishes with a beer and sparkling water came to approx. €43.
(Parma ham, wild mushroom and fontina pizzette with Seabass, braised pancetta bean cassoulet and pesto in the background.)
This is simple, honest Lebanese street food done superbly. Bakchich (54 Bold St, Liverpool) means “loose change,” and their mission is to serve healthy, fresh food at very affordable prices. The decor here is vibrant and colourful, the service is friendly and the food is packed with flavours of the Middle East. I ordered the vegetarian mezze which had all the wonderful flavours that one would hope for; highlights were the amazingly smokey baba ghanoush, zingy tabouleh, crispy on the outside falafel, with warm home-made bread to scoop up the dips. Beautifully light and moreish. Two mains, a juice and an Arabic coffee came to approx €26.
(Vegetarian mezze; hommos, baba ghanoush, tabouleh, falafel, fattoush salad, served with pickles and home-made bread.)
*** I am not affiliated with any of the companies listed. I have not and will not receive any financial benefit for mentioning any of them. Overall, I just think that those listed are pretty awesome.