FOOD GUIDE: ‘Kitchen’ offers a taste of good food and fine wine

Pictured at the Kitchen  restaurant ECCLESALL ROAD SHEFFIELD. Is Chef John Parsons & his dad Paul
Pictured at the Kitchen restaurant ECCLESALL ROAD SHEFFIELD. Is Chef John Parsons & his dad Paul

If good food is your priority, choose a top restaurant; if it’s fine wine you’re after, go to a connoisseur. But those who want both would be well advised to head for Kitchen, where the best of both worlds is laid out in one delicious package.

Chef patron of the Ecclesall Road bistro is John Parsons, whose CV reads like a Who’s Who of illustrious London restaurants: J Sheekey, The Ivy, Caprice and Marco.

His next door neighbour – sister company Food & Fine Wine – is run by former Harrods wine manager Adrian Walsh and colleague Mark Sutton, who certainly know their stuff in the drinks department.

And each Wednesday evening the two businesses come together for a Taste of the Kitchen.

John cooks up a treat for foodies with a six-course taster menu (£27.50), showing off his skills, and an option to sample a matching wine with each dish (£10 extra).

“There’s no à la carte, it’s just whatever I fancy cooking,” says John. “But people seem to like it.”

At the other end of the scale, those who like nothing better than a simple roast dinner can enjoy exactly that at Kitchen on Sundays – at a bargain price.

There’s a choice of beef, pork, fish or vegetarian for the main course, with four starters and four desserts, at £15 for three courses, or £12 for two.

Traditional British cooking is what John does best. “It was how we were taught to cook,” he says.

“I was lucky enough to catch the end of the classical wave.

“We did all our own butchery – and we cooked the lot. It made sense to use the whole animal.”

He led the way with a reputation for offal dishes, which other chefs are only now catching on to.

Use of cheaper cuts adds flavour and texture as well as variety, says John.

One of his most popular dishes is Dixie’s Three Little Pigs: a combination of pork fillet, crisp belly and pig’s cheek.

He also offers traditional alternatives such as devilled kidneys or scotch woodcock (scrambled eggs with anchovies) instead of dessert.

“You can’t invent anything these days, it’s all been done before,” he says. “The only thing I’ve really changed over the years is my buying strategy.”

He now buys local wherever possible: a strategy that is reflected in his seasonal à la carte, which is available lunchtime and evening, Wednesday to Saturday.

Everything is made on the premises, from bread rolls to custard sauce.

lBookings: (0114) 267 1351