AG@ Alexander House Hotel
This Little Piggy went to Alexander House Hotel, East Grinstead, West Sussex
Some friends had spent a weekend at Alexander House and had raved about the food so when myself and the piglet needed a day and night in a spa hotel I surreptitiously chose here. They had a right to rave about the food, AGs fine dining restaurant had also recently been awarded 3 rosettes at the AA Hospitality Awards. Another list to start working my way through!
Piglet fancied the ‘Butter Poached Lobster with Coral Mayonnaise & Crab Fritter’. The lobster was perfectly sweet and delicate as it should be and the crab gave the buoyant fish punch to the dish.
Unfortunately after these delicious dishes we were too full up for desserts although some complimentary petit fours were delivered to us in the bar afterwards where we were lounging with a digestif.
This Little Piggy approves.
© Ali Twidale. All Rights Reserved on Images and Text.
As the bulk of the hotel is still housed in the 17th century manor house, the dining room was as you would imagine, lofty ceilings with fireplaces and sign of the times stripey wallpaper. The paintings were kept to a minimum as the decorative woodwork that ran around the middle of the room was quite enough.
The part that anybody loves, complimentary amuse bouches. The one that was served to us here sounded intriguing and tasted even more bizarre. It wasn’t unpleasant it was just something I wouldn’t order if I saw it again on a menu (although I’m betting a hefty sum I would never see this on a menu!). It was a ‘Parsnip Pannacotta topped with a layer of Cherry Jelly and Hazelnut Foam’.
IThe main courses were just as beautifully presented and garnished to artistic perfection as the starters.
I had to go for the piggy option so backed up the scallops with ‘Rosehip Braised Pork & Crackling with Turnips, Foie Gras and Pigs Tail Sauce’. The main section of pork was extremely generous and I would have been more than happy with this but the porky cuts that were also served were to die for. Especially the ‘pulled pork fried bread’. Ok so maybe that’s not exactly what it was but when it was served it looked like it should have been served with a fry up. It was actually shredded pork that had been surrounded by breadcrumbs and lightly fried. The foie gras added the luxurious extravagant rich element as you would expect. So much so that I didn’t need the added taste of the pigs tail sauce. I did have a little taste and it was reminiscent of a reduced Chinese sweet and sour sauce.
Piglet’s main was of the beefy variety: ‘Hay Smoked Beef Fillet & Ale Glazed Cheeks with Maple Squash’. We also unanimously decided on the Black Truffle Croquettes as our side dish.
Both us piggies kicked off the meal with fish starters.
I picked ‘Roasted Scallops with Oyster Emulsion, Clams & Sea Veg’. The scallops were lovely and caramelised so sweet in flavour and although not a great deal of oyster flavour came forth from the emulsion, it was a perfect accompaniment as it provided a creamy texture that contrasted well with the crunchy samphire.