Sunday Lunch is for Sharing Dela
Sunday 5th November 2017
Dining out in Bristol is getting more and more difficult!
There are simply so many amazing places to eat and drink its harder and harder to choose where to go and then just when you think you have done them all or at least created the perfect spreadsheet of reservations and bookings they go and open another one....
I'll save my review of the best 2017 openings for later in the year after all this is Bristol and with 6 weeks left of the year there are likely to be more...
However, one that will surely make my list is Dela.
Opened in September, Dela, is a truly brilliant neighbourhood restaurant that serves sharing boards, mains and desserts that are a real treat. (Dela is Swedish for sharing)
The restaurant is run by Mike Orme and Lara Lindsey and its menu is derived with a simple concept that celebrates ingredients, provenance and seasonality.
This was my second visit and for me its always a truer test of a restaurant after the 'opening PR' has calmed down and the team get into the groove. On this visit we checked out Sunday Lunch sharing style.
The menu offers starters based on 2 sharing and as Kirsty is a card carrying vegetarian we chose the IOW tomatoes. I've eaten IOW tomatoes before and they pop up on lots of menus so it was interesting to see what twist could be put on the dish.
Thankfully, it didn't disappoint and the combination of tomato, leaves, beetroot, blue cheese, seeds and dried cranberries worked really well together. Perfectly combined it was a fresh, filling dish that set us up well for the main course. The cranberries were a clever addition that added a little sharp sweetness that worked really well with the cheese.
For main I chose the lamb served rolled from the breast and Kirsty selected the Mushroom and Goats Cheese Wellington. Each dish was accompanied on the board with hasselback potatoes, stuffing, carrots, braised red cabbage, kale and roasted acorn squash.
The lamb breast was perfect and tender and the little disk of pulled meat alongside it was delicious. I truly loved it but eating the vegetables alone and the gravy would have been worth the trip in themselves. The Wellington which I also tried, as all good reviewers need to write with authority, was full flavoured and the goats cheese not overpowering against the creamed leeks that came with it.
We dispatched our mains with gusto and having eaten so much food took a small break to peruse local house prices in carefully placed magazines should we want to save ourselves the drive next time.
Coffee filled the time we read and set us up for one of the best desserts and possibly (even as a dedicated lover of Swoon gelato) one of the best ice creams I've ever eaten!
Tarte Tatin is maybe the perfect Autumn dessert (excepting sticky toffee pudding which now i think about it is more Winter) and this was as good as any I had ever eaten. The apples were perfectly tender and spiced, the pastry crisp and light but the ginger ice-cream was spectacular. One spoonful and I started to measure it on the 'if its not Swoonometer' and it was not found wanting and it worked so well with the Tatin that I can't believe I haven't had it as a combination before.
Surely Dela is a contender for one of the best restaurants this year but should that not be enough for you then its a great space, part of Mivert Street Art Studios, and is staffed by people who want you to be happy. That in itself is worth sharing....