The Pump Room - Bath Food Review
Posted on: 2016-09-26
The generous portions, beautiful surroundings, immaculate presentation and musical accompaniments make a meal at The Pump Rooms feel like a real treat.
Famous in Bath for its ever-flowing hot spa water fountain, timeless décor, and delicious food served year round, The Pump Room is certainly one of the crowning jewels of Bath’s heritage.
After a swift introduction my mum and I were invited to sit towards the back of the room, directly in front of the stage holding a gorgeous grand piano, played expertly by their very own pianist. The atmosphere was light and everything in the room had a very classy kind of beauty to it. We were handed the lunch-time set menu, and were pleased to see all tastes and requirements catered for.
I am not actually a vegetarian but tend to be that way inclined whenever I dine out, so my starter was the Goats Cheese and Walnut Croute, while my mum ordered the Soup of the Day.
Served on a bed of tender beetroot salad and a tangy red pepper relish, the walnuts of the croute had infused beautifully with the dish, lending the whole thing a warm, nutty taste. The bread was perfectly toasted, crisp but not too brittle, and the slight heat of the relish brought out some of the softer tones of the cheese. The soup, so I’m told, had a mellow, creamy taste; but was full of flavour and served with a richly cheesy scone.
For the main, I chose the Butternut Squash, Shallot, and Feta Risotto, and my mum went for the Roast Chicken Breast.
The risotto was perfectly cooked, thick and creamy with crunchy stir fried broccoli and onion adding some bite. With soft chunks of butternut squash taking centre stage, and warm half-melted feta cubes scattered across the rice, this was a dish that had a very Autumnal feel. It was warm and satisfying, and came in an extremely generous portion.
Likewise, the chicken was served with some beautiful accompaniments – sage and red onion mash, glazed vegetables, and a delicate yet flavourful mustard dressing. Certainly a one-up on the average roast.
The Pump Room was busy, even at lunch time on a Friday, and you couldn’t have wished for a better atmosphere. The music was a wonderful accompaniment to the conversation and fine food, and the pianist even stopped to play happy birthday to one of the customers.
We moved quickly onto dessert, as both of us have a sweet tooth – a plum and frangipane tart for me and strawberry panna cotta for my mum. The tart was made with light pastry and deeply sweet purple plums, it practically melted in the mouth, and was accompanied by an ice cream so thick it was almost cheesecake-like in texture. The panna cotta was beautifully presented and teamed crispy meringue with sharp blackberry compote and silky cream. Everything on this menu has clearly been designed to compliment and contrast in the most subtle of ways.
The generous portions, beautiful surroundings, immaculate presentation and musical accompaniments make a meal at The Pump Rooms feel like a real treat. I cannot possibly stress how delicious the menu items were, and I am sure those we neglected to try were just as incredible. The set menu was very good value, with all three courses coming to £22.50, with a smaller two course option available for £17.50 - but I would urge visitors to check out the afternoon tea menu as well. I would definitely recommend booking in beforehand, as the sheer brilliance of the restaurant keeps it full.
Miri is an English literature student at the University of Bristol who enjoys folk-punk & math-rock music, trailing round art galleries, and playing video games. She is a keen follower of politics and will read any science fiction you throw her way. Having lived near Bath for many years she has developed a keen interest in the music and literature scenes and independent restaurants. Miri is the Assistant Editor of 365Bath.com. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.