Paradise Street, Liverpool
Review by Ellie Adshead
Liverpool’s George’s Kitchen is the fourth UK restaurant to be opened by two best friends promising proper British food with a unique twist. Opposite John Lewis, it’s in a great location for those seeking an alternative to the usual chains in Liverpool ONE.
It was a Monday night, not usually the favoured day to eat out, so I was expecting it to be a little empty and lacking in atmosphere. I was wrong, very wrong.
After receiving a lovely warm welcome, I scanned the restaurant to see that it was in fact rather full. Excellent – no speaking to my partner in hushed tones.
The décor is eclectic with ornate chandeliers as well as beach hut-style tables named after different areas of Merseyside – a nice touch, demonstrating George’s has done its research. We opted for the Southport one.
The server went through the menus, explaining the ‘sweetshop inspired’ and ‘famous five’ cocktail deals and highlighted some of the standout dishes.
To quench our thirsts, I opted for the refreshing Brighton Bloomer – a boozy lemonade with Bloom gin and also sloe gin for a seasonal twist. Annoyingly, the other half didn’t fancy the 2-4-£12 cocktail deal and went for a glass of Malbec.
The vast menu caters for most but is perhaps a bit limited for vegetarians and vegans. There’s a separate gluten-free menu which I’m sure will be welcomed by many customers.
To start I opted for George’s Runny Yolk Scotch Egg (£5.95), and beautifully runny it was. Packed with flavour, it was served with a side of ‘splendid’ piccalilli – their words and also mine. Delicious.
The other half had the Classic George’s Squid (£5.85) which was light, crisp and impeccably cooked, not at all resembling rubber bands which tends to be our fear whenever we order squid. The serving was large and worked well with the ambiguously named ‘spicy sauce’.
After a brief break, although had I known how big my main was going to be I would have come back the next day, the next course arrived. My Wild Ocean Cod in Onion Bhaji Batter (£13.85) was gigantic and although initially I felt over faced, I soon got over it and tucked into the tender fillet of cod encased in crispy batter.
It came with rice which you may think is questionable, but together with the homemade curry sauce it brought the dish together perfectly and put an exciting spin on a British classic.
My partner chose the Scouse Pie (£10.95), which fulfils the restaurant’s ethos of ‘proper British food with a unique twist’. The slow cooked lamb was succulent, tender and served in a shortcrust pastry case topped with bubble and squeak mash.
Our server recommended trying the twice-cooked chips smothered in stilton (an extra £1.50). My dinner date was intrigued and thankful for the tip as they were “phenomenal”. The chips themselves were proper ‘chippy chips’ – winner!
As if by a miracle, we found space for dessert and my eye was instantly drawn to the Apple & Caramac Higgledy-Piggledy Crumble Pie (£5.95). Unlike the rest of the dishes, this was quite small but deliciously sweet and the right size for satisfying any cravings.
My date chose the Warm Cadbury’s Fudge Finger Rolls (£5.95), likening it to a delicate version of the iconic deep fried Mars Bar. Two fudge bars came coated in crispy breadcrumbs and oozed in the middle. It was accompanied by ice cream with salted caramel and chocolate sauces.
As we left – full, content and easing into a sugar-induced coma – George’s Kitchen had made quite the impression on us, with plans to return already made.
As the city continues to offer a broad range of cuisines, it’s refreshing to see a newcomer bringing tradition with that unexpected twist.