Magic and Wizardry @ The Alchemist, Nottingham

I was taken right back to chemistry class recently, as I visited one of the most creative bar/restaurant brands in the UK- The Alchemist…

Magic and wizardry was on the agenda from the moment we arrived, as I was invited to sample the new food menu, which I had heard contained a good selection of vegetarian and vegan options.  Michael and his team looked after us very well, recommending cocktails and dishes, to which we started with one of the most interactive of them all- the ‘Cherry Poppins’, containing Whitely Neill raspberry gin, Disarrono, cherry, strawberry, citrus, topped with a bubble – yes a ‘bubble’, cleverly formed at the table using dry ice and a very impressive bubble gun- the gun creates the bubble which can then be popped to reveal smoky dry ice prior to drinking – what fun!

We went for a selection of starters including the crispy breaded halloumi fries- cooked to perfection and served with a sweet mustard mayo, duck spring rolls and ‘shrooms’ with miso mayo and crispy chilli oil- the highlight for me were the halloumi fries- incredible.

The next cocktail on the agenda was ‘The Colour Changing One’ and as it sounds, comes as a chemistry kit with two mini glass lab flasks containing your cocktail ingredients.  You are advised to pour the blue one first then the pink, over ice which immediately creates a smoke affect and two-tone colourful reaction in your glass over the dry ice- again amazing!

Main course was the Plant Burger for me and the Smoking BBQ Pork Board for my meat loving dining partner.  The veggie burger brand was by ‘Meatless Farm Patty’ and came served with Applewood Cheese and next level burger sauce, which was pretty special.   Sides are a choice of fries (normal/sweet potato/salt and pepper) and we shared a side of truffle slaw simply out of curiosity. 

By dessert, we were pretty full up and so decided to share the Yakitori Caramelised Pineapple, which arrived on a very impressively designed grill to the table, pineapple skewers already chargrilled and warm, ready to dip into the rum syrup and pina colada foam – yes foam and wow- I have no words as to how amazing this tasted.

The next cocktail on the menu for us was ‘Pear’ple Rain served in a test tube- yes you heard right and once again the interaction at the table from our waiter Michael included the pouring of a mysterious purple syrup which released the chemical reaction in the dry ice to cause a smoke effect which then attracted half of the restaurant to look over and wonder what on earth that cocktail was because they were going to order it next!

What you find at The Alchemist is that due to the interaction and pure theatrical spectacles of both the food and the cocktails, this makes for a dining experience to remember and one that brings complete strangers together- we got chatting to the table next to us who were curious as to which cocktails we had ordered and vice versa – a really nice touch and something that tends not to happen when dining in restaurants.

If you are a fan of Harry Potter, theatre, creative experiences, cocktails and good food then head down to The Alchemist Nottingham- you will not be disappointed.

The Sleepy Vegetarian

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