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SPOTLIGHT ON… La Brasserie and Champagne and Cocktail Bar at The Chester Grosvenor

Chester’s famous hotel has a history of excellence, quality and service which dates back to the 1860’s. 

This iconic Cheshire institution with a reputation for understated elegance has proved, by its numerous awards and industry accolades it knows how to do things right.

So, when we heard that La Brasserie, had undergone a refurbishment we were eager to see what the team had created.

La Brasserie, all- day dining restaurant and now boasts the city centre’s most exclusive champagne and cocktail bar.

With a brand-new bespoke brass and quartz bar, it sits in the heart of La Brasserie, stocking a unique selection of champagne, spirts and cocktails.

The whole space has a contemporary and relaxed feel whilst maintaining its reputation for elegance. An art-deco inspired scheme of black and gold sits along side an exquisite range of carefully selected feature fabrics. Blue and teal tones bring an injection of colour and compliment the painted glass skylight, making this unique feature even more striking.

As with all quality projects the devil is in the detail and glassware, table vases and candles complete the look and produce an opulent vibe to the area. We arrived early evening, candles were already lit, the bar area was buzzing, the champagne was perfectly chilled. Our first decision was whether to opt for the champagne or try one of the new cocktails.

We went with the champagne but, will definitely be back to work our way through the impressive cocktail list, especially the Limoncello Martinis, a full glass of summer made up with Limoncello, apricot liqueur all topped off with ros champagne. There’s even a dessert cocktail section – blowing a wind of change onto the old adage that, diamonds are a girl’s best friend. As always, staff were impeccable. Appearing just at the right moment to show us to our table, warm and professional in equal measure and ensuring our every need was met throughout the evening.

Once seated, freshly baked, artisan breads were brought to the table and it was decision time again as we studied the new menu. The mainstays of the Grosvenor - quality ingredients, skilful techniques and creativity are present as always and the menu provides for a relaxed, modern dining experience. I started with the hand dived sweet scallops, soused cucumber, dill and lime, from the selection exquisite hors d’oeuvres. My companion chose the suckling pig accompanied by turnip galette, black pudding and cracked mustard. Both dishes were beautiful and faultless.

From the ‘mains’ section, there’s a great selection of classic flavours, grills and fish dishes. I decided on the ‘Chefs Josper Special’ and there was no doubt about it, this was special. An 8oz succulent sirloin cooked to perfection on a Josper grill and served with a beurre blanc, velvet creamed potatoes, tempura broccoli and a dice of chorizo.

This special comes complete with a glass of sommelier’s choice wine. Again, reinforcing the message that this is a relaxed, modern approach offering diners the chance to experience fine dining flavours, dishes and wines without the traditional formality.

My companion chose the halibut with fennel chowder and confit Anya potatoes, steamed mussels and Bayonne ham. A Perfectly cooked and light dish, followed by the wonderful cheese course. I rounded off the evening with Turron, a heavenly iced Spanish nougat with honey and bergamot and took advantage of the sommelier’s dessert wine pairing.