This year, I celebrated my birthday in Bath with my boyfriend Sam. As part of our trip, we decided to go for a nice meal on the evening I turned the grand old age of 24. A good meal out means the world to me and I spent over a month researching what Bath had to offer. After shortlisting just 6 restaurants, and with just a couple of days to go, I decided on the Kilted Chef. Although opened just 4 months ago, the Kilted Chef already has quite a name for itself and is ranked #16 (in Bath) on Trip Advisor. Rumours have-it award-winning head chef Dougie Bonar actually wears a kilt in the kitchen! With or without underpants, he certainly produces fantastic food.
On arrival, we were greeted by the front of house director, Sue, who kindly took our coats and showed us to our table which was tucked away in the corner of the cosy yet modern basement restaurant. As Sam had mentioned it was my birthday when booking, I received a birthday card and two complementary glasses of prosecco which made a great start to the evening. We enjoyed these with mini salmon tart canapés and a pre-starter of some kind of soup served in an espresso cup which was truly divine. Lucky we arrived early enough to have the pre-theatre menu which is a steal at just £17.95 for three courses. After our pre-starter, we were offered freshly baked mini bread loaves to dip into the home-made rosemary oil and caramelised orange vinegar. This arrived at the same time as a chilled bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough NZ, our favourite! Like the rest of the wine list, this was priced considerably cheaper than similar bottles we have drunk in other restaurants.
Unusually, Sam and I chose the same three courses preventing the feeling of food envy I usually get when eyeing up the choices of others. We both agreed that our starter of parsnip, honey and sweet potato soup was the most delicious soup we have ever experienced and were glad that the bowl was reasonably large. Next up was our beautifully presented main of escalope of pork, not something I would normally go for but I was sold on its accompaniment of fresh English spinach, green beans wrapped in bacon, poached duck egg and parmesan sweet potatoes. As well as being beautifully cooked, the portion was sizeable, which is unusual for a dish so well presented.
Although full, there was certainly room to squeeze in a dessert, especially when it involved white chocolate soufflé mousse accompanied by a drizzle of dark chocolate and fresh berries. Again, this was beautifully presented and finished with a criss-cross chocolate decoration which also happened to be very tasty. I certainly got my chocolate fix! To finish we ordered coffee which came with a couple of dark chocolates handmade by the chef. These tasted great and melted the moment we picked them up, although we couldn’t work out what flavour they were. After we had finished we reflected on what could have possibly been the best meal of our lives yet and agreed that our waitress was both attentive and incredibly patient as we had spent over three hours at our table!
Our wine was regularly topped up but we didn’t feel pressured to hurry and our request to wait between courses was granted with a smile. We couldn’t believe our luck when the bill arrived complemented with a box of handmade chocolates as a birthday present from the chef. We were charged extra for the coffee (the menu states it is included in the menu) but we didn’t mind paying this as it was only two pounds and the whole experience was great value for money. We have truly found a gem which happens to be hidden in a basement in Somerset, the middle of nowhere for us Londoners! It’s unfortunate that the Kilted Chef is a 2 hour journey from our doorstep but who knows, with the level of success it’s achieved since opening, we could be lucky enough to see a branch in London.
Living life, loving cake,