One thing us City Dwellers enjoy most about our choice of residency is having an array of bars and restaurants on our doorsteps to frequent whenever we like, and for me nothing beats an after work drink and bite to eat with my friends.
On hearing that Toast Bar (a past Friday night haunt of mine) had come under new management, and has launched a sparkling new menu, I couldn’t wait to take an old pal along to check it out.
Toast (situated minutes from the train station on Wellington Street) has always been a popular bar for a post work beverage, and it attracts regular custom from a mix of people, including the office suits to the day off casuals. For me I have always found that Toast has a relaxed and welcoming, with a splash of cosmopolitan, feel to it, and I’ve always left having made a new mate or two.
On the Wednesday evening my friend and I visited we had the intention of a good old catch up over fine food and drink, and lucky for us there just so happened to be 241 cocktails. Our bar man and waiter for the night knew both the drinks and food menus inside out, and was on point with his cocktail recommendations, for me it was the fresh Elderflower and Cucumber Fizz, and my friend the delicately flavoured Strawberry Margarita.
The Toast food menu has special offers galore from the 241 Monday Meal Deal, the Tuesday Steak Nights, to the Football food and a pint, however what we were in the mood for was mixing it up a little and trying out a few different options, and perfect for such occasions are the cold platters to share. We had our platter of 4 options for £6.00 to start, which came with homemade chutney, salad garnish and fresh bread as standard, and had 12 delicacies from which to choose, we opted for Cajun Chicken, Marinated Mozzarella Balls, hummus, and Oven Roasted Vine Tomatoes (I have kept the Ham Hock Terrine in mind for my next visit). Sharing boards are always a favourite of mine and Toast’s offering reassured why, the presentation was faultless and the combined flavours of our choices complemented each other effortlessly, the platters are also spot on for a quick nibble or bar snack.
For mains my friend and I decided to go for a bit of a carnivores spread with me eager to try the stone baked Meat Feast Pizza, and my companion as equally intrigued by The Classic Burger. I don’t know about you but when I see stoned baked on the menu I expect an authentic pizza that could give the Italians a run for their money, well Toast needn’t fear, the floppy base with a crispy edge, and the mozzarella covered pepperoni, salami and chicken, was just to my liking, and clearly my friends as she wasn’t shy on nicking a slice or two.
The locally sourced 100% beef burger was served in a Brioche Bun with smoked bacon, cheddar cheese, tomato, pickles and homemade relish, and was accompanied by seasoned hand-cut chips, homemade coleslaw, a mixed leafy salad and a rather large onion ring. The burger was of very generous proportions and therefor was extremely filling, but in true Man vs Food fashion my mate (with a little help from me) was not to be beaten. Although it was all about the meat, for us on our visit Toast also have a decent range of veggie dishes including the somewhat appealing Carrot and Halloumi Burger.
Having swiftly cleared our cocktails off with our starters we next decided to go for a crisp, and very affordable, bottle of Pinot Grigio with the rest of our meal, being typical girls white wine tends to be our drink of choice however Toast also has a great selection of beers and spirits to suit all preferences.
As mentioned earlier Toast seems to be a regular social hotspot so I wasn’t surprised that whilst we were there we bumped into a couple of other friends who, after we’d eaten, we polished off a couple more cocktails with in the large, heated outdoor area.
With realisation that it was only Wednesday it was time to call it a night on our trip down memory lane to Toast, but fortunately with the perks of city living there wasn’t far to stagger home.