The Wharf House Restaurant in Gloucester is undoubtedly one of the city’s finest places to eat out – popular with couples and families from Gloucester and Cheltenham, perfectly located for visitors enjoying walks along the canal and a great venue for large parties.
The classic restaurant enjoys a relaxed ambiance and boasts contemporary oak furniture, fine white crockery and stylish glassware – as well as friendly staff and a regularly-changing menu of British cuisine using only the freshest local produce.
Morning coffee and cakes are available from 10am to 12pm, lunch from 12pm to 3pm, afternoon tea from 3pm to 5pm and for dinner from 7pm.
For sample menus and more information, please visit thewharfhouse.co.uk.
While The Wharf House already enjoys a reputation as one of Gloucester’s finest restaurants, SoGlos.com discovers there’s more than meets the eye at this waterside eatery.
The Wharf House in Gloucester needs little introduction, having earned itself an excellent reputation for serving refined and modern British cuisine, drawing upon the best of local produce.
But what you may not know is that the restaurant also serves as a hub for the Herefordshire and Gloucestershire Canal Trust – working to restore 34 miles of canal and locks which will once again link Hereford with Ledbury, Dymock, Newent and the rest of the inland waterway system at Gloucester – with all profits from The Wharf House going to the trust.
The restaurant’s adjoining visitor centre serves as a useful mine of information on the local canals, exploring 750 years of the Leadon Valley from the Roman vineyards to the English Civil War, as well as promoting the work of local artists and crafts people.
Browse SoGlos.com’s photo gallery for a taste of what you can expect during a visit to The Wharf House, including a snap of two very special residents.
Monday 12 May 2008
Saturday 31 August to Sunday 1 September 2013
Comprising heritage boat processions, the return of famous boat horse Gypsy Queen, live music, great food and the annual...
A few years after our first visit, SoGlos once again sets out to discover whether waterside eatery The Wharf House lives up to high expectations as one of Gloucester’s very finest restaurants.
Two and a bit years since SoGlos.com last reviewed The Wharf House restaurant in Gloucester, we thought it was high time we put the waterside eatery’s well-earned reputation to the test once again.
From gaining a new Prime Minister to the coining of the ‘credit crunch’, not forgetting Susan Boyle becoming an unlikely household name – a lot can happen in such a time, after all.
Arriving early on a Friday evening, the atmosphere was instantly relaxed as we were seated in the warm, honey-toned restaurant. Two busy young waitresses made final preparations for the evening’s service, before patiently waiting as we deliberated much longer than is civilised over which of the mouth-watering classic-British-with-a-twist choices on the menu we should opt for.
With deliberations dilly-dallied over long enough, we kicked-off with some delicious hors d’oeuvres – with warm homemade bread used to greedily soak up the last drops of tangy oil from the plump olives – the very best of intentions not to spoil our appetites being quickly forgotten.
The red onion and chilli soup was a sublimely seasonal start to the evening for my dining companion – with natural sweetness in abundance making it a moreish, if unusual, course. The incorporation of chilli gave the flavoursome soup a fiery undertone, and while we did wonder whether the addition of croutons might have elevated the dish further still, it was nonetheless excellent.
My rustic carpaccio of beef featured generous slices of meltingly tender beef, combined with punchy rocket and flavoursome parmesan for a fantastic take on the classic starter, but it was the hot homemade horseradish that showed unique flair and brought the simple dish together with aplomb.
With appetites now truly whetted – and the dining room filling with chatter and laughter as a table for 12 and a couple of parties of four arrived, almost simultaneously – the main courses maintained the high standard which had been set.
The pan fried duck breast on a bed of orange and ginger couscous was certainly one of the more attention-grabbing choices on the menu, but one which combined bold flavours with confidence. The tender bird – served perfectly pink, as ordered – delivered a delicious depth of flavour, with the light cous cous giving the dish a refreshingly zesty and modern twist.
The Herefordshire rack of lamb, a popular choice with other diners too judging by the smiles, starred plenty of moist, beautifully-earthy and delicate meat on the trio of ribs – combined with creamy apple mashed potato to create forkfuls of deliciousness. The rich honey and rosemary sauce could have packed in a little more flavour, but worked beautifully to hold everything together.
It was fantastic to see the use of local ingredients extend beyond the food, as the last drops of a delicious ripe and rounded rosé – from the Strawberry Hill Vineyard just down the road in Newent – were savoured.
Onto desserts and my apple and blackberry crumble was a homely delight, piping hot out of the oven with a crunchy top layer making way for generous helpings of soft, sweet and bang-in-season fruits. While the duo of dark and white chocolate cups – respectively infused with orange and then lime – was an ambitious, exciting and tantalising dessert that we vividly recalled from our previous visit, and weren’t at all surprised to see it last the test of time.
With a genuine commitment to local, seasonal and good quality ingredients, attentive service and a relaxing waterside setting, it’s not difficult to see why this restaurant has not only survived – but thrived – in recent years.
While The Wharf House certainly impressed the SoGlos.com team on its first visit in 2007, despite the doom and gloom that pervades many a newspaper headline, this is an independent local business that has gone from strength to strength, with diners driving from across Gloucestershire to visit the county institution – and for very good reason.
The average price for a three-course meal for two at The Wharf House, excluding drinks, is around £60.
By James Fyrne
Sunday 18 October 2009
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