When I first started this blog, I could eat so many of the 1796 challenge foods I could barely keep up. I was ticking off all the more ‘normal’ foods, and I could easily get through 10 or more in a week, so I always had more than enough to post. Nowadays the foods that are left are that little bit harder to find, or make. I still eat foods for the challenge as often as I can (and I always will until the list is done, even if it takes me the next 20 years!), but now it’s more like a couple a week. To make sure I keep you all in plenty of lovely, foodie posts, I’m going to be featuring more reviews and recipes alongside my usual challenge posts on here from now on.
First up is a review of Marco No. 1 restaurant in Chichester. It opened earlier this year, and I went to check it out with my dad whilst visiting him for the weekend a few weeks ago. Despite what I initially thought, the restaurant actually has nothing to do with Marco Pierre White, though I’m sure many people think the same thing considering the name and the modern English/French style menu.
Our arrival was not ideal as that evening the day’s light rain decided to turn into a monsoon, which resulted in us cowering in the car for 10 minutes before having to make a quick dash for it. The restaurant was literally 2 minutes from the car park and we still arrived rather bedraggled! Luckily once inside the restaurant we were immediately cheered by the lovely decor which was a nice cross between modern and classic. At 7.30 when we arrived, the restaurant was emptying of all the pre-theatre diners, so another time we would probably book for 8pm just to avoid that slight busy period.
We wanted to leave room for dessert, so to start we just plumped for some bread and olives. The bread was a simple choice of white or wholemeal, but it was good quality with a lovely crunchy crust and a light, springy crumb. The olives were pink, so I was immediately sold on those!
For my main I chose Duo of Lamb, which included slow-cooked shoulder and roasted best-end with boulangere potatoes and a white bean puree. I often choose lamb when I go out to eat as it is expensive to cook at home, and I was not disappointed here. The shoulder was packed with flavour, and the best end was extremely tender with a delicious hint of sweetness.
My dad chose the veal, which came as an escalope wrapped in parma ham, with rosemary new potatoes, confit onions, and a mushroom and marsala cream sauce. He was as pleased with his choice as I was. The veal was cooked perfectly and the combination of flavours was wonderful.
For dessert, I picked a tiramisu with amaretti, whilst my dad went for a hot gingerbread and apple pudding. Both were absolutely yummy. In fact, my only complaint was that my tiramisu was so big I could barely finish it!
Overall I would absolutely recommend giving Marco’s a try. The food was brilliant quality. The prices, whilst not cheap (main courses go for around £15-17), were very reasonable considering how much care had obviously gone into the ingredients, the recipes and the cooking. I’m looking forward to going back again.