I have wanted to visit the Marsh Cat for a while, so when my boyfriend suggested I pick somewhere to head to for our anniversary it was the top of my list. We usually go a bit further afield, but with a young puppy at home we didn't want to leave her for too long.
The first impression as you arrive is that the place looks warm and inviting. It has a brilliant location with views over the estuary on Parkgate's beautiful promenade and we were seated upstairs where we could make the most of this.
Nick, the manager, was very welcoming. When we said we weren't sure what sort of wine we felt like he recommended an absolutely delicious rose and we ended up going on to have a second bottle of the same without bothering to find out what it cost. I couldn't believe it when the bill came and it was less than £20 a bottle, but the wine menu is very fairly priced. My favourite thing about the wine on offer is that there are two House Whites, a House Dry and a House Medium. I can't remember seeing this elsewhere but I think it's a fantastic idea.
Ordering the food was slightly more difficult because of the broad range of styles on offer. The menu of the restaurant is a sort of global fusion of cuisines and there were loads of really original sounding dishes. We chose to start with the Thai Mixed Appetizer to share, then my other half opted for the Seafood Thailandaise and I went for the Pan Roasted Cod. The cod is one of the dishes featured in a photo on the restaurant's website and I had wanted to eat it since seeing it when I booked online!
Before the starter arrived, we were brought a warm bread roll and some butter which was a really lovely touch and tasted like it had been baked that day. It was an excellent indicator of the quality of the food to come.
The Thai Mixed Appetizer was a generous platter of Thai fish cakes, duck spring rolls, chicken satay and peppered pork with a chili jam and a small dressed salad garnish. Everything was utterly fantastic, but we managed to agree that the stand out element of the dish was the peppered pork. It was a very close call for me between this and the duck spring rolls which were crisp without being overcooked and made with a wonderfully flaky pastry.
After the starter was cleared we were almost immediately served our mains. My cod was pan roasted and served on a delicious medley of spinach and peas in a saffron and chive cream sauce, with a wonderful topping of crispy pancetta. It also came with a bowl of seasonal vegetables which I wasn't expecting but were a welcome addition as they helped me to soak up the fantastic sauce without licking the plate (without them I really would have been tempted). The fish was perfectly cooked and the crispy skin was definitely my favourite part. The chef managed to replicate the picture on the website perfectly and the dish tasted as good as it looked.
The Seafood Thailandaise looked just as fantastic, with huge scallops, king prawns and chunks of monkfish in a sort of Thai curry broth on a bed of sticky rice. I was allowed to taste a small amount of one of the scallops and it really was fantastic. Usually my other half is a little more generous with letting me try his food but he told me it was too good to share and from the part I tried I do agree with him.
The waitress took one look at our almost sparkling plates and I don't think she was surprised when we asked to view the pudding menu. It's usually an easy choice for my other half because he will always go for either cheese or cheesecake but I had much more difficulty. He spent a few moments weighing up the lemon cheesecake or the cheese platter but the homemade chutney on the latter decided for him. I was stuck between the chocolate brownie and the Bakewell tart, but the black cherry ice cream served with the second made up my mind in the end.
I love a Bakewell tart. I have been to Bakewell more than once and have eaten more than my fair share of Bakewell tarts and Bakewell puddings, so I feel well informed enough to say that what arrived was not a Bakewell tart, but a Bakewell pudding (and much the better for it!). The black cherry ice cream was the perfect accompaniment to this and it was so delicious that I want to go back today and eat another.
When our bill arrived, we were shocked to see it seemed incredibly low despite our two bottles of wine. We have had far more expensive meals than this which didn't measure up to this one at all and we will definitely be back. Nick the manager told us about some of the plans for the restaurant in the coming months which sounded very exciting.
Thank you Marsh Cat for a wonderful evening.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.