I've been visiting Blackheath on and off for over 10 years and have always been curious about Vulcan's, but only got round to it this year, when we splurged for a birthday treat.
First up, you have to accept that there is a minimum spend per person, which an entree and a main won't quite cover. As my husband and I have been known to share an entree and a main between the two of us, this left us well near bursting at the seams as we waddled back to the cottage we'd rented for the weekend. Bursting but happy, though, having just had one of the best dinners in our life.
It wasn't perfect - the soup (with tofu and mushrooms) I'd had was a little on the bland side (more salt needed), and my husband thought the flavours of his main (the pork) were somewhat unbalanced. But my fish main was excellent, with an exquisite intensity of flavour in the sauce, which was well balanced by the crisp, light taste of the accompanying salad. The aforementioned pork was also very well cooked and very tender, and the salad it came with was delicious.
We had no troubles getting into Vulcan's, coming in off the street. It was quite early in the evening, though, and the place was empty. There were a few other groups there by the time we left, but we had no problems with service. The only criticism we would have is that it took rather a long time for the food to arrive given that we were the only guests there at the time.
A previous reviewer had a problem with the atmosphere, but this really is very much a subjective thing. I would describe it as minimalist but cosy, with polished concrete floor, burnt terracotta-coloured walls and tables that are quite closely spaced. Tablecloths would be too much, I think, in an area this size, and would have lent the space a stuffy, snooty feel. It's a lovely fine dining venue, but not formal. It's perfect for those looking to escape the big city for a few days and have planned more for bushwalks and lounging by an open fire than for occasions that will require a nice shirt and blazer. Dress up if you want, or stroll in in jeans and fleece jackets, as we did; the welcome you receive will be equally warm and friendly. We look forward to our next visit!
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