We were recently invited to review the three course Christmas meal at Cafe Bar Arighi. We love Arighi Bianchi, which is a luxury furniture and furnishing store located in Macclesfield, Cheshire. Do read / find out more about the store and the furniture from our last blogger event post here. The Cafe Bar is located in the Grade II building and can easily seat 94 people at a time.
When we received the invitation, we were looking forward to visiting the cafe again as we loved the food the last time we were there and wondered what their Christmas menu would offer. With just two weeks before Christmas, the need to indulge in all things Christmas such as a turkey roast dinner, mince pies and puddings was something we were looking forward to, to get us into the festivities.
Watch this short video slideshow to be exported to Cafe Bar Arighi and to experience first hand what their Christmas Menu is all about.
The restaurant was very busy (as usual) when we got there, luckily we had booked our table prior. We were guided to our table by the waiteress and soon presented with our menu. We ordered our drinks while we pondered on what we should have for lunch. We were given a cracker as well as a yummy mince pie with our drink.
Here’s a quick look at their menu, a two course meal costs £16.95 while a three course meal costs £19.95.
Chef’s homemade soup of the day (with Granary Bread)
Ham Hock Terraine (served with festive chutney, pickled vegetables and toast)
Crab in Lime & Tarragon Mayonnaise (served with mixed leaves and toasted sunblush tomato bread)
Roast Cheshire Turkey (served with all the trimmings, seasonal vegetables, pigs in blanket and a rich wine gravy)
Veg Toad-in-the-hole (sausages and roast potatoes in a Yorkshire pudding with seasonal veg and a veggie gravy)
Oven Roasted Plaice (stuffed with prawns and spinach, lemon and chives mash with a champagne sauce)
AB Christmas Pudding (served with cream or brandy sauce)
Slice of Homemade Cake (choose from a selection of cakes which is served with cream or Granelli’s ice cream)
After looking through the menu, we decided to start off the meal with the Chef’s homemade soup of the day which was Butternut Squash and Red Pepper Soup. The soup came in a large white bowl and the portion was generous (this could have easily fed two people). The soup was served warm, was light and satisfying, the red pepper added a little zing to the butternut soup. The granary bread felt wholesome and we would recommend this as a light meal on its own.
Our second starter was Crab in Lime & Tarragon Mayonnaise. Presented beautifully on a black board, the cold starter was totally exquisite and did not taste fishy at all, the sunblush tomato bread and the tarragon mayonaise complimented the dish well. You could tell we loved the dish as we cleaned the board clean.
For our first mains, we ordered The Roast Cheshire Turkey (as no Christmas dinner will be completed with a roast dinner meal). Our Roast Turkey was served with all the trimmings, seasonal vegetables, pigs in blanket, a rich wine gravy and cranberry sauce. We found the vegetables were cooked perfectly while the meat was still moist and tender. Our favourite bit had to be the stuffing which was so delicate in flavour and the gravy brought the whole dish together. Some might prefer to have the gravy on the side but for presentation sake, it was beautiful to have the gravy already poured on the dish.
Although the kitchen was busy, Chef Geof was kind enough to let us in to take some video’s and photos of him at work. Here’s a photo of Chef Geof as he was plating our main course. You can see him in action in the above video slideshow. He and his team are the ones who produce all the amazing meals at Cafe Bar Arighi. Chef Geof was very friendly and chatted with us about the menu. He mentioned that he has been working there for more than two years now and told us that 95% of the things served at the cafe was made in the kitchen from the food, cakes, scones and puddings. He even added that he is happy to cater gluten free, vegan or vegetarian meals and says that if these requirements are mentioned on the phone when booking is made, he will be able to whip up something for the client.
Our second main was the Oven Roasted Plaice. The fish was stuffed with prawns and spinach. The fish was very delicate and the Champagne sauce was amazingly lovely. The mash has a lovely lemony punch to it and flavour of the chives came through very well.
Finally, for dessert, we just had to try the AB Christmas Pudding. The pudding was served warm and came in doused with Brandy sauce. The pudding was light and not stodgy at all. Served with the red berries, it just made the dish so festive. We loved every bite.
For our final dessert, we had to pick a homemade cake from the Cake counter (we were spoilt for choices as there were so many cakes to pick from). See some of the choices below.
After much thought, we picked the Chocolate Malteser Cake. Our waiter asked if we wanted it served with cream or Granelli’s ice-cream and we ended up having both. The Granelli Ice-cream which is local to Macclesfield tasted so creamy and delicious and went really well with the chocolatey cake. Rich and indulgent.
What we loved about the meal / place?
As much as we want to fault the cafe or food, we just can’t. Each dish was presented well, tasted delicious and the service by the staff was great. The Christmas meal felt very Chrismassy and we would definitely return again with our families. This we think, is a meal you want to bring your loved one to, to impress. Alternatively, if you run a small business and want to treat your office staff or organise a networking event, this is a perfect menu / setting.
What we did not love about the meal / place?
There was nothing we did not like but a stark reminder to our readers, that its best to make prior table booking to confirm your seat, otherwise you may end up waiting for a long time especially if its close to lunch time as the cafe is always busy.
How much does the Christmas Menu cost?
2 course meal costs £16.95
3 course meal costs £19.95
How can I book ?
To book a table call / book the cafe for private event call 01625 613333.
(The Christmas Menu will be available from 1 to 23 December 2017).
Where is Arighi Bianchi ?
The Silk Road
Tel: 01625 613333
What are Arighi Bianchi’s Opening Hours?
Monday to Saturday 9.30am – 5.30pm
Sunday 11:30am – 5.00pm