Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Tofu and Pepper Stir Fry Bento

Late 2011. My attention is brought to an amazing BBC News video that blows my mind, makes me sad I'm not a Japanese child and makes me want to get into making Bento Boxes. In a BIG way. Despite having been told since by Tokyo Purple Girl that this is a classic example of the BBC's misrepresentation of Japan and that very few mothers actually have time to make bento boxes, it is a cool video that makes me happy and that I could watch pretty much every day.

Christmas 2011. Bailey purchases me The Just Bento Cookbook, I am ecstatic and vow to make 2012 the year of the bento in the Good Gobble household.

Christmas 2012. Reflecting on the year, I realise that, like those Japanese mothers, I haven't made a single bento box. Thoroughly disappointed in myself, I vow to make 2013 the year of the bento in the Good Gobble household. I spot loads of amaaaaazing bento boxes for sale on eBay and vow to buy them as well as a whole host of cute bento accessories as soon as January payday comes round. While I wait for said payday to arrive I am super lucky enough to find a lovely / cheesy bento style box in my local Levenshulme bargain shop of all places! A two-tiered bad boy with dividers and everything for a mere £2.99! YEAH. Boyyyy.

Last week I tried out my first bento box and I was SO HAPPY. Making bento boxes is surely one of the best things to do ever. I went for a really simple one from the book - Chicken and Pepper Stir Fry Bento but I swapped the chicken out for tofu.

The recipe was super simple - very few ingredients and quite subtle flavours, but Bailey still said it was "the best tofu he had ever had". Which might not be saying much as he doesn't actually like tofu, but we really did enjoy it.

Another good thing about bento boxes is that if, like me, you are quite the attention seeker, you will get LOADS of attention at work about your lunch. I just so happened to take mine in on a day that the entire staff had a meeting at lunchtime and I loved getting loads of comments along the lines of "What are you eating... GET YOU!" and "I can't believe you brought chopsticks and everything..."

One element I particularly enjoyed were the pickled cucumbers which added a nice bit of crunch and acidity to the meal.

I really think making bentos is something I could really get into but I've got to be realistic. I am a full time teacher and am simply not going to have time to be making myself these posh lunches unless I find a way to fit it into my busy lifestyle. We found the perfect way round it on this occasion - we made loads extra and had it for our dinner the night before and just made sure we had enough stuff left over to put in the bento box. A great solution - plus it meant I got to enjoy this meal not once but twice!

I am really looking forward to being the proud owner of some new bento stuff and Bailey and I are already planning a bento picnic for the summer - making up a few mega cute bento boxes for ourselves and a couple of pals (really awesome ones with Hello Kitty's head made of rice and stuff) and going into the countryside for the coolest picnic EVERRRRRRR. Stay tuned for more bento fun, and if it gets to like June and you've not seen me making loads of bento boxes, do me a favour and have a go at me.

For the Tofu and Pepper Stir Fry:
396g block firm Tofu
6 spring onions
2cm chunk ginger
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
2 tbsp soy sauce
Pinch of chilli flakes

For the Pickled Cucumber:
Half a cucumber
1/2 tsp salt
Juice of a lemon

For the Blanched Broccoli:
1 head broccoli

To serve:
Japanese sticky rice
Cherry tomatoes

Earlier in the day, drain the liquid out of the tofu according to the packet instructions. I had a very helpful Bailey do this for me earlier in the day as he was off work ill.

Start the evening's cooking by preparing the Japanese rice to the packet instructions. I timed mine so it would just be ready at the same time as the rest of the dinner.

Prepare all the veggies for the stir fry. Finely chop the ginger, roughly chop the spring onion, cut the peppers and tofu into bitesize chunks.

Slice the cucumber into very thin rounds and place into a bowl. Massage the cucumber with the salt, until it starts to go a bit limp. Put to one side.

Prepare the broccoli by cutting into florets and preparing a pan of water - just enough to cover all the broccoli. Bring the water to the boil.

Now all the prep is done you can get cracking! Start by stir-frying the ginger and spring onion in a pan for 2 minutes or until fragrant.

Turn the heat up and add the peppers. Sprinkle with some salt and stir fry for 4 minutes.

At this point you can also add the broccoli florets to the boiling water. Boil only for 4 minutes before draining and running cold water over the broccoli until it's fully cooled down. Drain and put to one side.

Drain any liquid from the cucumbers that may have come out while you've been getting on with other things. Add the lemon juice to the cucumbers and put to one side.

Push all the peppers to one side of the pan and add the tofu. Allow to cook for a couple of minutes until the tofu is getting that nice crispy 'crust' and move around a few times until it's getting nicely cooked all over. Stir everything together and add the pepper, chilli flakes and soy sauce. Stir well.

Assemble the dinner - serve up the rice, blanched broccoli and stir fry. Drain the lemon juice from the cucumbers and serve those too. Don't forget to leave plenty of ingredients for your bento box!!! Before eating your dinner, pack rice into one of the sections of your bento box.

After eating your dinner, the stir fry and rice will be nicely cooled for you to assemble your bento box. This is where you can make it look really pretty. Use lettuce leaves as dividers and pack your pickled cucumbers into a silicone cupcake case. Stuff the broccoli and cherry tomatoes into any spaces and it will look dead cool. And there you go, a lunch to make you the envy of your colleagues.

Monday, January 28, 2013


Normally when we go out for a meal, Bailey and I will spend a good few days procrastinating before we get round to writing our blog post. This isn't necessarily a bad thing as we do always enjoy reliving the experience once a little bit of time has passed. However, every so often we will go out for a meal so good we can't wait to get home and put pen to paper. Our most recent example of such a meal is Livebait, a meal so special I have barely stopped thinking about it since we went on Saturday night.

It perhaps seems strange that I, a seafood-loving pescatarian who so predictably always orders the fish in a restaurant, had never been to Livebait and I myself am beginning to wonder the exact same thing. Bailey and I discussed it on the way there. Although Bailey likes a bit of fish as much as the next guy, he rarely orders it over meat (unless in "...and chips" form), and he finds shells and tentacles a huge turn off. We concluded that the only occasions we would have gone there would have been my birthday but I'm not sure either of us would have thought of it so we probably wouldn't have ended up going.

We are really grateful therefore that we were spared this injustice thanks to the fact that the folk at Manchester Confidential have been inviting lucky bloggers like us in to sample Livebait's new menu. It seems that we would be visiting at just the right time - following the restaurant's relaunch and it being labelled by Manchester Confidential as "a restaurant brilliantly reinvented". We were also fortunate to have booked in for our meal a little bit later than some of the other bloggers, so having already read reviews by Mrs PetticoatManchester Foodies and Things to do in Manchester as well as having been given some Twitter heads ups by local foodie @hansyquirk, I felt we also already had some ideas on what the best dishes to order were. 

Even having all this information and very high expectations I feel I was still unprepared for just how much I was going to absolutely adore this meal. I have to admit I was in a really bad mood on arrival. Having walked in the pouring rain wearing ballet pumps, I had just accused Bailey of splashing me with his "clown feet" and convinced myself that I had developed trenchfoot... this was a terrible start to a romantic meal for two. All of this was forgotten as soon as we were greeted by friendly staff members and seated in the tranquil restaurant. I asked Bailey to choose me a cocktail and before we knew it we were cosy (even my wet feet) and sipping on a Tom Collins and a Manhattan served dry.

Although I didn't love my Tom Collins as much as the one I had at Solita, these were great cocktails and Bailey said that while I was in the loo he'd watched the cocktails being made with care and attention. 

Our waiter was fantastic from beginning to end. He managed to pull off being friendly and chatty while providing a more formal service and all the while being a bit of a badass. There was a particularly theatrical pouring of the wine, a balancing of a tray on one finger and a dramatic pepper-grinder spin, all of which we enjoyed. He knew exactly when to come over and managed to whisk several items off our table without us even noticing (to quote Bailey: "He was some kind of wizard, really"). He was also Spanish and gave me the opportunity to show off by having a short conversation with me. 

I was quite intrigued by the Tempura Oysters I had read about in both Manchester Foodies and Things to do in Manchester's blog posts but there was no way I was going to get Bailey to eat any with me (he suggested that if I were to order them his preference would be for me to go off and eat them in the ladies loo) and I didn't want to spoil my appetite by eating a whole six, but luckily our brilliant waiter even managed to sort it out for me to get one. Yehboy.

This was a great start to the meal, the batter was light and crispy. My regret was mindlessly squeezing that entire lime wedge onto the poor thing which totally overpowered any oyster and cucumber pickle I might have tasted. Oh well, I will just have to go back in and get the Oysters and Prosecco deal next time I'm shopping in town, tant pis.

My starter was the Var, Faroe Islands Smoked Salmon. Ordering this was a spur of the minute decision as I'd previously had my sights set on the White Anchovy Bruschetta (will get that next time) but it was one of those occasions where I was glad I'd followed my gut instinct. The salmon was gorgeous with a bit of lemon squeezed on but what made this really awesome was the little quenelle of horseradish cream which was so light it was like eating a cloud of pure loveliness.  

Bailey's chose the Salt & Pepper Squid to start which was perfectly cooked with a subtle layer of just nicely crisp batter. This was made brilliant by the sauce which was a far cry from the sickly, sugary, sweet chilli sauce that usually puts me off ordering anything with that name in most other restaurants. It was more chilli than sweet and packed a real punch.

There was only one choice of main course for me and that was the much celebrated by Manchester Foodies dish of Roast Sea Bass Fillet. When Anna described this dish as "so good" (yes, in italics) I knew I would definitely like it but I really didn't expect to absolutely head over heels fall in love with it as much as I did. That amazing garlic and sorrel sauce! That beautiful potato galette - impossibly thin layers of potato that were crispy on the edges and soft in the middle! That perfectly cooked fish! My mouth is watering just thinking about it now. Aaaaarrrrgh!!!

Bailey thought he would throw a wild card in and order the Orchids Farm Cheshire Rump Steak, just to see how the non-fish dishes fared when up against stunning creations like my sea bass.

This was quite a traditional steak and chips but every element on the plate was brilliant. Even though it was a fairly delicate slice of meat, they still managed to cook it rare but with a nice charred flavour on the outside. The fries and onion rings were served fresh and piping hot - clearly straight out of the fryer, giving the dish plenty of crunch. There was also what looked like a homemade ketchup but was actually a tomato and horseradish relish. Bailey had never consumed horseradish in this manner before but it blew him away and he was pleased that he'd been given a decent sized pot. And what of that little unassuming tomato, perched on the corner of the plate? Well let's just say you know you are in a good restaurant when they even manage to make the tomato garnish taste ace.

I should mention at this point that the wine recommended to us by the wizard waiter were great accompaniments to the meal (Orballo Albarino Rias Baixas for me and Borsao Garnacha Campo de Borja for Bailey). He had a simple philosophy for wine recommendations - if it was Spanish it was good, and it worked out very well for us. 

Having your own personal window ledge for your bottles and camera was a food blogger's dream 
Onto desserts and I was somewhat concerned that the Dessert Tasting Plate that was being recommended to me was going to push me over the edge into uncomfortably full. But I still went for it, and ate every last bite. How could I resist, with everything on it being absolutely beautiful. The chocolate délice was my favourite - gorgeous and smooth with an amazing salted caramel. The lemon posset was super lemony and light and the cheesecake was also off the hook. 

Bailey didn't seem to want to mess around with mini portions of things like me and ordered himself a "full on Cheesecake". This was possibly even more pleasing to the eye than my trio.

By the time I got round to eating my mini version of the cheesecake, Bailey had very specific instructions for me: get equal amounts of everything on your spoon and get it in your mouth. It was incredible - the base of the cheesecake was light and soft with all the crunch being provided by the honeycomb on top. Bailey couldn't believe how much he liked this considering he doesn't normally like honeycomb. Fabulous - a wonderful end to a wonderful meal.

So what else is there to say about Livebait after the food has spoken for itself? I can honestly say it was a brilliant experience and a meal we won't forget. We loved all of the food, all of the drinks, the service, the building, the atmosphere, the location. There wasn't anything we didn't love in fact. I have to admit I did love it more than Bailey did, not that he had any complaints, but Livebait is right up my street and is serving up exactly the sort of food I would choose to eat. Livebait is probably not suitable for every occasion - I don't think I'd go there with a large group, but for a treat with your man or somewhere special to take your mum or a classy girly lunch it is just the ticket. In fact, if you choose anywhere else in these circumstances you are making a fatal error! We have already decided that this will become a regular place to celebrate things but we're not going to need that much of an excuse to return!

I loved it so much that it's made me a little bit sad that there are people still out there who might have been put off by bad experiences from before Livebait changed hands. There is the distinct feeling now that whoever is working behind the scenes has a clear vision of how a good seafood restaurant should be delivered to the people of Manchester and is working incredibly hard to do so, with a good team of staff on board of course. 

Having not paid anything other than the tip for our meal I suppose you may say it's quite easy for me to write a such a gushing review but I can honestly say that especially thanks to the quality of the food this meal was worth every penny we would have paid for it (and with the 50% off deal they've got on at the moment it would be a bargain). Thanks so much to Livebait and Manchester Confidential for such a lovely experience... we will be heading here again and so should everyone!

Livebait on Urbanspoon

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Burns Night Supper

Despite being in no way, shape or form Scottish, Bailey and I decided we would get involved in celebrating Burns Night by having our own little quiet Burns Supper. As I say we are not Scottish but we do like any old excuse to have a bit of a special meal. Very geeky really. As we were celebrating on a week night we couldn't have it too extravagant, although I did manage to escape from work a wee bit early and we did whip out and fill up (then empty) our Toby whisky jug!

We did a bit of digging around to find out what the traditional components of a Burns Supper were. We decided to skip the Cock-a-Leekie Soup and go straight on to the Haggis with Neeps and Tatties. We managed to get a vegetarian haggis from our local corner shop and purveyor of various vegan delicacies, Village Stores. Now I have never eaten any type of haggis, let alone vegetarian so really didn't know what to expect... Well, it was DELICIOUS! We will definitely be getting this again for our veggie roast dinners and I'm going to try and make my own next year. The Neeps and Tatties were good too, I decided to do them more like roasties before giving them just a little bit of a mashing before serving.

For dessert I made a slightly healthier version of a Cranachan using Greek yogurt instead of cream. I used a nice bit of Heather Honey we had, some toasted oats, raspberries and the obligatory nip of whisky! A bit of an unusual dessert, maybe I should have stuck with the cream...

Finally we had a lovely strong Cheddar with some Scottish Oat Cakes and I can safely say this put us well on the road to uncomfortably full. A real treat for us as we do normally eat dead healthily in the week.

Celebrating Burns Night was LOADS of fun. We watched a few Youtube clips of people toasting their haggises and we listened to some dudes reading out Burns poems which was a bit confusing for my non-Scottish ears. We will definitely celebrate Burns Night again next year. Fair fa' your honest, sonsie face, Great chieftain o' the puddin-race! 

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Roast Cod with Couscous Crust

With our much anticipated visit to Manchester's branch of Livebait just around the corner and all the local bloggers singing its praises, I thought it would be fun to get ourselves in the mood by dipping into the Livebait Cookbook I've had sitting around unused on my cookbook shelf for a while.

This book was recommended to me by a chef. He gave me lots of cookbook tips and this one I did especially like as it has lots of very interesting recipes that are mostly quite simple to make. Although you can sort of see why a chef would recommend it, it isn't as 'cheffy' a book as some of the other books I bought on the back of his recommendations and does have advice on how to elevate the recipes from 'family meals' to meals worthy of 'showing off'.

Having never been to Livebait, this book would suggest a trip to the restaurant is all about delicious fish and delicious bread. Two things that I am a big fan of. However, I am well aware that the book was published in 1998 and that the Livebait restaurants have been through a great deal of changes since then. Using this cookbook is therefore a nice way to dip into the history of the place.

Although our version of the Roast Cod with Couscous Crust would certainly fit much better into the 'family meal' category than the 'showing off' category, it was blooming lovely, super easy to make and I will definitely be making it again as a healthy midweek meal. The book recommended you accompany the fish with their Black Pudding and Chickpea stew but we went for a more veggie friendly (and Bailey friendly - he doesn't like chickpeas) Ratatouille.


For the Ratatouille
1 aubergine
2 courgettes
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 onion
3 garlic cloves
6 tomatoes
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp tomato purée
1 tbsp Splenda
1 pinch chilli flakes
Salt and pepper
Large bunch fresh basil

For the Roast Cod
125g couscous
225 ml water
Juice of 1 orange
2 Cod Fillets
Salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to gas mark 6/ 200 degrees C. Then start the ratatouille by chopping the aubergine and courgette into chunks and frying in a large pan over a medium heat, adding the aubergines first for around 3 minutes on their own followed by the courgettes for another 3 minutes. Cut the red and yellow peppers into bitesize chunks and add to the pan. Fry for a further 3 minutes.

Finely chop the onions and garlic and add to the pan with the rest of the Ratatouille ingredients. Cut the tomatoes into quarters and add to the pan. Reduce the heat to low and allow to sauté slowly.

Meanwhile, prepare the couscous by bringing the water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the couscous to the pan and allow to cook for a few minutes until the water is absorbed.

Take the couscous pan off the heat and add the orange juice. Leave to stand for a bit. Season the cous cous.

Lay the cod fillets down in an oven dish and season.

Top with the couscous crust - lay it on nice and thickly (according to the Livebait book should be about 1.5cm thick) before placing in the oven for 10 minutes.

While the cod is in the oven sort out the ratatouille. Add the wine vinegar, Splenda, tomato purée, chilli flakes and season to taste. Finally, tear up the basil and add to the ratatouille and mix well.

Once the cod is out of the oven, place under the grill to allow the couscous crust to go crispy. Serve up portions of the ratatouille on plates.

Top with the cod and serve! The picture in the book had a load of rocket leaves on top of theirs which looked pretty nice but we didn't have any.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

The Bells Of Peover

So last weekend we were pretty busy, on Friday we were out and about in Chorlton and dined at the Hungry Gecko Supper Club, Saturday morning began with a hangover and a slice of cake at Trove which led to a Dosa Xpress banquet and further boozing.  This meant that come Sunday we were feeling a little bit worse for wear due to the food and drink consumed.  Obviously the best course of action would be to stay in, drink lots of herbal tea and maybe indulge in some raw foods or perhaps a lentil soup.  We didn't take that course of action, our course of action involved going for a Sunday roast and drinking some beer.

Perusing the list of restaurants on our 'most wanted' list The Bells Of Peover leapt out as we had previously read a cracking review by fellow food blogger Mrs Petticoat (we never saw Gary Barlow either!).  So without any breakfast or tea in our bellies we jumped in the car and travelled to the sleepy little village (I'm not even sure its big enough to be a village) of Lower Peover.  The location of the Bells Of Peover is its first big plus point, really easy to get to from South Manchester and what a lovely place, you will pass some gorgeous views getting there and on arrival at the restaurant (after you have made your way down an appropriately named street called The Cobbles) the building itself is fantastic especially with a dab of snow here and there.  Before we entered we had a good mooch round and marveled at the overgrown tree that greets you at the doorway.  At this point we had already decided we would be returning here in the summer to enjoy their garden in the sunshine.

As soon as we popped our head in a member of staff greeted us and popped off to find us a table while we waited at the cosy little bar they have.  Treating myself to a pint of ale we had a good look at the menu which was fairly different to the sample menu provided on the website, it had quite a few more items on it and much more pescatarian choices for Jules and of course they had the foodstuff I was after, the roast beef.

Again we have to mention how nice a venue this is for not only the exterior but also the interior.  They've really just taken a lovely pub and moved it up a notch to a finer dining hall BUT its still basically a pub.  The decor is a touch modern but it sits well with all the original dark wood and fittings that are still present.  We also spied a few of the larger tables with their luxurious leather sofas and though it would be good to come back with a larger group so we could take advantage of those bad boys.

On to the food.  A nice spot of bread arrived pretty much as soon as we ordered and as we had skipped breakfast this was gone within a few seconds.  The starters appeared not too long after that.  I had gone for the confit duck leg with apple and parsnip puree.  I had really struggled to pick something from the menu but when I tasted my duck leg I knew I'd made the right choice.  Duck is one of those things that I love when its done right but I loathe it when its done badly.  This time there was a real nice flavour running through the well cooked (a little bit over if anything) meat, the skin particularly stood out especially when combined with the sauce.  The accompaniments too were cracking especially when you went for a full on Torode (has anybody else noticed John Torode's fork busting method of collecting every element of a dish on to a single fork?) when the creaminess of the parsnips and the sweet apple really hit the spot.

Jules had decided to go for the hand dived scallops (how else do you get scallops?  With your foot?  With a broom?) served with cauliflower, golden raisins and capers.  Jules too was very happy with her taxing choice.  The cauliflower was rich and creamy while the golden raisins sweetness meshed well with the tang of the capers.  The scallops themselves were well cooked and had a lovely looking scorch to them, the whole dish was very pretty.  This was Jules' favourite dish of the meal.  Its worth pointing out that, like the decor, the food has taken a step away from pub fare towards finer dining but these were still fairly substantial starters.

We were well satisfied with our starters and sat contentedly until the mains arrived.  One point worth mentioning about the service is that although the staff are friendly enough they seem to have this odd approach to managing tables in that they can only do one thing at a time, multitasking is not an option.  Every time somebody appeared in the dining room we were in they were there to do one job which they would do quickly and efficiently then get their head down and walk straight out.  There was a distinct lack of eye contact which for me is key in looking after your guests.  The result of this was that we had a few extended waits for dishes to be cleared and for the bill (not huge waits but significant enough for us to be sat twiddling our thumbs) and almost every other table in the room had a minor grumble (drafts, missing gravy etc.) that I was aware of (I couldn't help but pick up on their unhappiness) but the staff were not and therefore it didn't get sorted and those people either left a little miffed or sorted it themselves.  For us it was a minor annoyance mostly because it could so easily have been remedied with a quick glance, a bit of multitasking or even a brisk "I'll be with you in one minute".

When the mains arrived I have to say I was gutted.  I had been drawn in with a promise of a roast dinner served from a board but sadly this is reserved for tables with more than one guest eating a roast and so I got a boring old plate.  A little thing I know but I was sad to miss out on the theatre of the board that I had seen other diners enjoying.  The roast itself was great, absolutely perfect veg (I have tried hundreds of times to recreate the pub roast potatoes and have never come close, any tips would be appreciated), lovely meat, a light but tasty gravy and a mega Yorkshire pudding.  Now why wasn't it a perfect roast?  A couple of things, firstly I had asked for the beef to be pink and looking at the picture above you would think that is what I got well that's what I got for the top slice.  The two slices that accompanied that first perfect one were right at the other end of the scale and were cooked well all the way through.  To be honest I'm not that fussy and normally take it as it comes but it shows a little bit of carelessness to send it out like this and even, dare I say it, a bit of cheekiness to try and hide the two well cooked slices.  The other niggle was that there was a lovely thick slice of fat on each slice of beef that was nearly impossible to slice with the table knife provided, again a little niggling problem but it did mean I lived in fear of firing dead cow across the restaurant while tackling my main course.

I'm not a fan of prawns (or any of the rest of that tendril toting family) myself and for some reason I find them more offensive if they are either extremely large or incredibly small, I've got nothing against the ones in the middle, they aren't too bad.  Therefore I wasn't that impressed myself with Jules' choice of sea bream fillet with brown shrimps, purple sprouting broccoli and pink fir potatoes.  That said Jules thought it looked and tasted great!  A real crispy skin on a moist slab of fish, the aforementioned tiny shrimps popped in the mouth (balk) and the whole dish was bursting with rich buttery flavour.  That was the only problem by the sounds of it, it was all a little bit too rich as by the final few mouthfuls Jules' was starting to feel just a little bit queasy.  That didn't stop her though and she soldiered through to finish the dish with a smile on her face.  What a hero.

As we said before the portion sizes are a little bit more generous than you might expect and the pictures we had seen previously didn't do them justice size wise and therefore we could only manage to share a final course.  There was some discussion that we would both get a cheese selection each but in the end we went for the one.  I am glad we did as it came with a fair old whack of cheese and crackers that were more than enough for already burdened stomachs.  It was really nicely presented, all the cheeses were great and the chutney was lovely (Jules thought it tasted like mince pies).  It was a great way to finish a Sunday meal.

The Bells Of Peover is a lovely restaurant serving great food in a fantastic location.  At the moment they are straddling the qualities of a good country pub and a finer (but not too fine) dining restaurant mostly successfully, I think the only place they are letting themselves down is in their slightly one dimensional table service (as mentioned above) combined with the fact that the staff, on the whole, are not overly warm towards the guests instead taking a slightly too formal demeanor in their interactions which just comes across a little curt.  Now this isn't a huge problem but it adds another niggle to a meal that already had a few which means it just took the shine off the meal in my book.  I would still recommend it (especially if you like the look of the locale or enjoy the slightly more formal service) and we will definitely be back in the summer at which point hopefully the sun will be shining and the service may be a little bit more relaxed.  

Bells of Peover on Urbanspoon


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