We headed back east to Sussex and a small seaside town next to Brighton where Will's brother lives. They have a favorite neighborhood haunt called Crescent Road Cafe Restaurant (www.crescentroad.co.uk) which really blew us all away. The spot is small and unassuming and probably can't fit more than 2 dozen diners in a cinch, but boy were we happy that they had reserved ahead for us a full up Thursday evening.
Our adorable server Millie whose red locks could have made her Orphan Annie 10 years later was as sweet as could be and brought a bottle of quenching Picpoul de Pinet from Cotes to Languedoc to start us off. We met Nicole who, along with her chef husband, Zack, run the place with little help. What a job!
The starters were varied from their rake on the traditional English "Ham, Eggs & Chips" with Beetroot Ketchup to a superb MACKEREL FISH CAKE with Tartare of TROUT which came wrapped in cucumber with adorable little jellies, Chervil and flower petals.
Samuel went for the 24Hours Slow Cooked BUTLER's STEAK with Gratin Potatoes, Artichoke, Broad Beans and Silver Skin Onions. He gobbled up the meat and skipped to the amazing TRIPLE COOKED CHIPS but we all oohed and aahed over the side of TRUFFLE POTATO PUREE.
Mains included Roast HAKE with Spicy Heirloom Tomato Salad, Capers & Pea Shoots.
Goosnargh Duck with BBQ Pineapple, Burnt Milk & Honey and Foraged Greens (Zack actually gets them himself) which tasted even better than the previous night. This duck is truly the most tender ever.
Roasted Lobster came with Chips and Aoili and was as yummy as the one several nights earlier in Cornwall; a close second for sure.
We moved on to a Peter Schweiger Gruner Veltliner from Kamptal.
Cheeses were fab with Brie de Meaux & Livarot from France and local Katy's Lavender and Cornish Yarg. We got those amazing flat carroway crackers again as well as fig compote.
Samuel reveled in the Chocolate Fondant with Curry Ice Cream, Coconut, Ginger and Golden Raisins. Mango and Pine Bavois came with Wild Pepper Ice Cream BBQ Peach and Passion Fruit. A superb Isabella Stone Paddock Late Harvest Semillon 2009 from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand was a treat as chef managed to glean one of the less than 186 cases made!
It was a night we shall all remember very fondly with good food, good wine and family as well.