Discover The Wildebeest for a luxurious treat you’re certain to enjoy, says Judith Palmer
Smart and stylish, The Wildebeest stands out from its surroundings with a terrace and well kept topiary lit up with fairy lights. But its traditional exterior does little to hint at the marvels that await you inside this Stoke Holy Cross pub restaurant. On our arrival, we were met by staff behind a well stocked and beautifully designed bar, beyond which we could see into the kitchen, where Norfolkborn award-winning Chef Patron Daniel Smith (who is also chef at the Ingham Swan and who bought The Wildebeest with his business partner Gregory Adjemian in April) is busy working his magic. The gorgeous aromas that radiate from there hit me as soon as I walked through the door, setting my mouth watering.
Rustic tables made from large cuts of thick wood and wrought iron, along with chandeliers and Norfolk artwork make this a chic and special dining experience.
I am renowned among family and friends for being very picky with my choices at restaurants, but the menu’s descriptions made it almost impossible to not want everything! My partner Nathan chose to try the pan fried pigeon breast, with puy lentils, pancetta and red currants (£8.50) for starters, while I decided to go for the crispy pork belly with pulled pork fritter, shallot puree, charred artichokes and shallot rings (£7.95). These arrived promptly and on colourful plates; presentation is obviously set to a high standard as the dishes both looked as stunning as they tasted. My pork belly was maybe a little more fat to meat than I would have expected but tasted very tender. It was complemented beautifully by the stunning pulled pork fritter and the shallot rings and puree gave a beautiful flavour. Nathan’s pigeon - which the waitress had advised would be served pink - melted in the mouth and sat on a
Head Chef & Patron Daniel