Last month I visited Café Rouge at Intu Lakeside in Essex, and was pleasantly surprised by the relaxed atmosphere and delicious food. It’s now firmly on my list of “go-to” places for dinner with friends!
Admittedly French would not necessarily be top of my list when selecting a restaurant for dinner. Not because of any dislike for the regions food, but purely because there are just so many other options it wouldn’t normally reach my top 3! Which is why I was so pleased after my visit to Café Rouge, and disappointed that I hadn’t given it the chance before.
Arriving at 6pm the restaurant was not too busy, however by 7pm it was getting pretty full! One of the best ways to tell if a restaurant and its food is good – and that certainly proved true.
We sampled the set menu which is a bargain at just £10.95 for 2 courses, or £13.95 for 3 courses. You can’t deny that’s a bargain! Plus, with 4 starter options and 5 choices for main you still had enough choice to select something you really wanted – rather than being forced to choose something just for the lower price.
We started with olives, bread and butter which was a great intro alongside my first sip of their delicious house red wine. The butter itself is a special Café de Paris recipe and we had to order extra it was so good.
Following this we had the Panier de Champignons and Pork Rillettes, followed by Fish Parmentier and Moules. The portions were great, particularly when you take in to account you are only paying about £5 per course! They were each absolutely delicious too, and perfectly accompanied by an extra serving of creamy mash.
To finish we shared the Torte au Chocolat which was sweet enough, with a bitter edge, and perfectly ended our meal at Café Rouge.
I really cannot recommend the restaurant enough, and with venues across the UK you need to give it a try!16