The campaigning restaurant guide for people who want to eat fish – sustainably
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Black Friars Distillery,
60 Southside Street,
PL1 2LQ01752 604448
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Surveyed 11/09/2012What does this rating mean?
Plymouth Gin is one of the country’s finest, so a pre-prandial G&T is an absolute must at the Tanner brothers’ brassserie housed in the distillery itself. We’re also pleased to see both Dart Valley Reserve, a fine aromatic dry white from Sharpham in Devon, and the excellent Camel Valley ‘Cornwall’ Brut included in the interesting wine list arranged by style.
The restaurant itself is modern and airy with white stone walls and high wooden ceilings; vivid lime and fuschia leather seating plus Banksy prints add a vibrant, funky feel. The menu keeps to the fashionable, urban hip-hop theme with dishes as varied as smoked haddock risotto, spinach poached egg (£12.95), Thai Green chicken curry, sticky rice (£13.95) and treacle pork belly, Devon cider sauce (£14.50). Steaks come with a choice of sauce, and beer-battered fish with smashed peas and skinny fries. Crab with pink grapefruit, hazelnut and lambs lettuce can be taken as either a starter or main (£8.95/£17/95), as can scallops with chorizo, rocket and balsamic.
A two or three course express menu (£10.95/£14.95) is available lunch Monday-Friday and early dinner Monday-Saturday - extremely good value for a meal, say, of beef salad and horseradish dressing, market fish of the day and sticky toffee pudding with toffee sauce.
We purchase our fish sustainably and locally from Plymouth and Looe fish market. Whenever possible we use traceable fresh local produce, please be understanding if certain items are unavailable.
The Barbican Kitchen gets a good rating primarily because of their use of sustainable options such as hand-dived scallops, and using either haddock or whiting in their fish and chips. And we like that they work directly with day boats but we sense they could do even better. We’d like to see them become real champions of local seafood and would welcome the chance to work with them to achieve this aim. For now, they’ve made a great start and they fully deserve their blue fish rating.