Not long before I went to Amsterdam, I had the pleasure of catching up with an old school friend for dinner.
She’d just done a stint on a cruise ship around Asia as an entertainer, and was back in our hometown.
We arranged to meet at Brighton station, but I got stuck at Hove due to the train strikes that we have been plagued with recently.
Luckily, I met a gentleman also heading that way, who was in a rush to have dinner and drinks with clients before jetting off to Israel in the early morning for a meeting.
He asked me where I was heading and asked if I’d like to split a cab, there weren’t any trains going for about an hour, I was already late and K was waiting at the station for me. I weighed up the pros and cons but figured it would be fine since it wasn’t his car, and he wouldn’t be driving or have control over the destination with my argument.
He turned out to be a really interesting person and I was shocked that someone normal had actually offered to split a cab with me, and not make seedy remarks or tried to sniff my hair. Trust me, I don’t have a lot of luck with people.
In the end, he didn’t even make me pay for even half the cab fare. We said our goodbyes and I hopped out to tell K I had met a lovely, interesting guy.
“Did you get his number?” She queried.
“No.” I said sheepishly and she shook her head at me.
“He said he was going for drinks with clients somewhere, but I can’t remember the name of the place, it began with D…” I trailed off realising that, clearly, I was never going to see that guy again.
We went for a few cocktails first at Las Iguanas to have a catch up before we headed down the lanes to the restaurant that K had booked.
1847 is a vegetarian restaurant, serving locally produced vegetarian, vegan and gluten free meals.
It was given it’s name after the year that the world’s first vegetarian society was formed.
We were greeted by some very friendly staff, who continued to be friendly attentive throughout the evening.
The interior is fairly small but still spacious and light with some added greenery to accent the surrounding minimalism.
We were given a pitcher of rushing cucumber water and menus placed in front of us. We ordered some white wine and chatted as we perused the options.
I have to say, it is so nice to go to a restaurant and see options other than the obligatory “Goats cheese salad” or “peppers stuffed with couscous”.
We both settled for the same starter of battered vegetable kebabs.
Regardless of the childish giggling from the ever so slightly phallic shape of these, they tasted wonderful.
For main, I opted for the “Surf & Turf” –
Aubergine steak, seaweed salad, kohrabi coleslaw with Jersey Royal potatoes.
K went for the “Celeriac & Potato Gratin” –
Gratin with local cheese, spring onions, roasted radish & carrots and a side dish of “heritage tomato salad”.
The aubergine “steak” had been slow cooked and rather than the rubbery texture you can sometimes get with this vegetable, it softly pulled apart and tasted delicious. The seaweed strangely complimented the aubergine, and the kohlrabi coleslaw was an interesting twist on the side dish.
K’s gratin tasted absolutely incredible, especially with the heritage tomato salad she had picked.
We were both so full we had to keep stopping for breaks, after much heavy breathing, belly rubbing and perseverance, we still couldn’t quite finish our plates.
We had a break whilst we sipped the remainder of our wine, and even though we were stuffed, we still really wanted to try a particular dessert that had caught both our eyes.
We decided to share the “Mint & Matcha Panna Cotta” with raspberry coulis, roasted almonds & tomato granita.
The Panna Cotta tasted perfect and the sharp raspberry coulis went perfectly, however, I personally was not a fan of the tomato granita addition to the dish.
There is a cocktail bar downstairs, but being painfully full and already quite tipsy, we decided to forego the stairs.
We paid the bill and much to the waiters amusement, got him to take a photo of us on K’s polaroid camera.
Slightly drunk, I proclaimed we should go “in search of the D!”
By that, I obviously meant the pub beginning with D where the mystery taxi man had gone for drinks.
It was a short lived search.
We ended up stopping for a beer elsewhere, nattering some more, and then heading back to the station.
I absolutely loved 1847 and I would recommend it highly to vegetarians and meat eaters alike, it’s the perfect middle ground where flavour is the focus of the dishes and you will not notice the lack of meat. There is a wide variety of choice, the staff were friendly and attentive and I intend to go back when I am next in the area.