The Wick has been known to be punching above its weight for quite some time, which is way it’s a long-standing favourite of mine and why I’ve written about it here, here and here.
For those of you who haven’t yet tried The Wick, it’s a West Street bar, but one that’s like no other on this busy strip. With a cool and eclectic decor, relaxed and friendly service as well as a good range of drinks including cocktails, real ales and wine, this is a far cry from the studenty chains that you’ll find in the area.
And it’s not one to rest on its laurels which means that the food menu change regularly, which, in turn, means that I’m rarely short of a reason to visit and I sometimes receive invites to try the food… as I had on this occasion.
We were booked in on a Friday evening so the bar was pretty busy, but, sat in a quiet corner, this didn’t really bother us and it just added to the atmosphere of the bar.
We each kicked off with a cocktail; a classic Negroni for me and a Hondarriba for him. Typically made with the Italian Campari, the Negroni is incredibly bitter and I must admit to not enjoying them in the past. In fact I’ve been making them with Aperol instead, but this was lovely and it’s probably made a Campari fan of me. On the other hand, the Hondarriba was a twist on a smoky martini, with both Lagavulin and Campari making appearances in the glass.
Moving onto the food and Gav had the special of salmon terrine (£4.50). Served with a little salad and a couple of slices of bread, this was more pate than terrine, but it was deliciously creamy and rich. Gav certainly had no complaints.
I went for the sweetbreads (£5.50). Coated in panko breadcrumbs, I was running another risk by ordering something I didn’t usually like (I wasn’t on a mission to find fault with the Wick or anything, honest!). But unlike the chicken nugget, heavily breaded and deep fried sweetbreads I’d had in the past, these were actually very good. The panko coating simply provided a crisp edge that didn’t over power the delicate meat. An apple compote had a savoury tang to it and completed the sweetbreads nicely.
Moving onto mains and Gav had the roast belly pork (£8.50). It was served with a colcannon (not quite the bubble and squeak as promised on the menu) and a gravy that was so good that Gav still smiles when he thinks about it. I had the braised beef brisket (£8.95) which was beautifully tender and fell apart at the touch of the fork. Mash was smooth and creamy and the large bunch of watercress was the perfect accompaniment, especially as the strength of its peppery flavour lead me to believe that it was British grown. Essentially, this is a simple dish made of simple flavours that never fail to work together.
I was stuffed by this point, but Gav quite fancied the rhubarb panna cotta (£4.75). Although served in a glass coupe, I can assure you that the consistency was spot on and its glass casing wasn’t necessary for keeping the dish together.
Service was easy going; friendly and efficient and table service certainly comes in very handy on a busy evening. So, once again, the Wick had pulled it off. This is good food at very reasonable prices and anyone looking to indulge without breaking the bank should head here.