Occupying an enviable position on the famous Sadler Gate, The Palfrey is ideal for anything from a casual drink to a delicious meal with friends. Originally a blacksmith’s, the historic building is split across two floors and features industrial-chic touches like bare brick walls and exposed lightbulbs. Coupling sophistication with a warm welcome, this buzzy bistro is owned by mother-and-daughter team Amie and Sharon Marlow. Those who visit will easily see why this venue was crowned Best Bar at the Derby Food and Drink Awards 2017.
Guests can sit in the elegant bar downstairs and enjoy one of the cocktails The Palfrey is renowned for, or venture into the lovely courtyard where there’s live music at weekends. For those who are feeling peckish, head chef Tom Burton has a remarkable understanding of flavours, creating inspired dishes with his talented team. He is also very aware of the differing dietary requirements of his guests and always aims to include tempting gluten-free and vegetarian dishes on the menu.
We visited one weekend to sample The Palfrey’s legendary Sunday roast and were certainly not disappointed. To start, we shared a delightful baked Camembert infused with honey, thyme and black garlic, served with fresh crusty bread. Next came the roasts themselves. The roast chicken was succulent and tender, while the Derbyshire strip loin of beef was juicy and perfectly cooked. Both roasts were served with flavoursome accompaniments including slowroasted carrots with fennel seeds, braised red cabbage and buttered seasonal vegetables. Rounding off a perfect dish, our plates were stacked with large, fluffy Yorkshire puddings and delectable homemade stuffing.
To finish our meal we selected two scrumptious puddings to enjoy with a refreshing cup of tea and a beautifully smooth coffee. I opted for the delectably rich double chocolate brownie, which was perfectly complemented by pickled chilli and raspberry purée. For my companion it had to be the innovative basil meringue served with fresh strawberries and cream. The charming, friendly team, exceptional food and attractive decor make this an unbeatable spot. After such a splendid evening we can’t wait to return, perhaps to try out the popular beef, reef and bubbles night.