Croes Howell, Rossett

We’d heard great things from a good handful of friends about the Croes Howell, and finally got around to checking it out for ourselves.

The Croes Howell is sited on straight mile, between Rossett and Llay, which gives great access for people from North Wales and the North West. The location, facing out over the Cheshire plains, is simply stunning and got us talking about how nice a Sunday lunch on clear summer’s day looking at that view would be.

The establishment has been renovated to a very high standard and is truly impressive on the eye. The open kitchen faces the wraparound bar, which leads naturally to the restaurant seating that looks out over the fields towards Chester and Merseyside.

Purple, white and black as primary branding colours can so easily be gaudy but the owners of the Croes Howell have subtlely used them to great effect. The whole venue certainly sets the tone for a great meal – but does the Croes kitchen team match the visuals? Let’s find out…

The Food

To start with, the menu is enough to make the mouth water. Plenty of choice and some exciting variations on tried and tested dishes.

Pigeon breast is rapidly becoming a favourite starter of mine and the Croes didn’t disappoint! Two beautifully pink fillets laid on a divine potato and chorizo salad all just melted in the mouth. The balsamic and rosemary glaze cut through the creaminess of the salad to give a lovely blend of flavours. Delicious! My partner’s salmon and smoked haddock fishcakes were presented very well, were light and full of flavour. A crisp fresh salad, lemon wedge and some homemade tartare sauce completed the picture.

My partner opted for a char grilled chicken breast that was again presented to an excellent standard, cooked well to ensure it was still moist and worked very well with the Lyonaisse potatoes and cream sauce. My pork belly was exceptionally well cooked; delicious tender meat that fell apart on touch and contrasted well with the mustard mash. Pak choi was a surprise addition to the dish that was very welcome.

Rarely for us, neither could resist a dessert! Following the quality of the starters and mains the desserts certainly maintained the lofty standards: beautifully executed dishes, rich without being overpowering and a lovely finale to a fantastic meal.

Starters

Spiced smoked haddock and salmon fishcakes with crisp salad, lemon wedge and our own tartare sauce.

Pan fried pigeon breast coated in a balsamic and rosemary glaze with a chorizo and potato salad.

Mains

Char grilled chicken breast with Lyonnaise potatoes, green beans and a leek and wild mushroom cream sauce.

Braised pork belly with grain mustard mash potatoes, sauteed pancetta and pak choi with a calvados cream sauce.

Desserts

Banana liqueur, toffee and hazelnut cheesecake with butterscotch sauce and clotted cream ice cream.

Dark chocolate and caramel torte with chocolate and coffee truffles with creme Chantilly.

The Tab

2 x starters

2 x mains

2 x desserts

4 x bacardi/coke

3 x large rose

£83.15

Red Year Verdict

We simply couldn’t recommend this venue enough – there was a lovely atmosphere throughout the evening with both conversation and laughter flowing freely. The staff were excellent and the food outstanding. I’m going to run out of superlatives soon, so if I sign off this review by telling you on the strength of this one meal we booked in for the Croes Howell’s New Year’s Eve celebrations as we were settling the tab.