Siggy and I have been to Goodliffes a few times over the past year or so as my taste for something other than Indian food on a Saturday night has developed. The restaurant has a ‘posh casual’ vibe with a pleasant stylish decor and comfortable if cramped seating arrangements. The music on the night we went was some pretty awful jazz (I don’t like jazz so it’s hard for me to be neutral on the subject). The toilets are very clean and modern though 🙂
They have a good wine list and the beers aren’t too shoddy either. The drinks and the food are a touch expensive for Loughborough, but Goodliffes is competing for clientele with the likes of Browns Lane and the Printroom so it’s to be expected. We went on a Saturday night with another couple who we rarely get to meet up with on a night out. The restaurant was noisy and we were shown to a table near the door which was directly under the speaker kicking out the crappy music. I asked to move but unfortunately they did not have any free tables for four at the more comfortable seating area at the back of the restaurant.
There’s nothing like starting off on a good footing with the waiter, and that was nothing like starting off on a good footing… Fetch me a beer now slave!
We opted for mains and desserts as the starters are pretty expensive and we were all more interested in the desserts. They had some specials on the day which attracted a lot of attention (good news for the restaurant if what I’ve heard about ‘specials’ is true). Here’s a typically dodgy photo of the board:
My mate played it safe with the fish and chips off the main menu, Siggy and my mate’s partner (much to my annoyance given that I intended to blog about it) both opted for the pasta dish off the specials. I opted for the tuna fillet off the specials board, because I had to choose something other than the feather of beef that I keep opting for (see the Reflections section below for more about that).
The pasta portions looked small but were actually very filling and the mushroom flavour was intense with a creamy sauce. Apparently.
My mate’s not really into all this food blogging business and so wasn’t overly forthcoming with his opinions about the fish and chips, but it looked like a good portion and the chips were big and chunky.
The tuna was rather overcooked but all the flavours were great with a nice chilli heat.
Then it was on to dessert and a round of coffee tequila shots. Love this stuff, although its damned expensive. £4 for a shot in Goodliffes.
By this point the people next to us were tucking into some baked camembert and stinking the place out. The rotters!
The sticky toffee pudding has previously had a strong ginger flavour – this time there was no hint of ginger. The custard was presented in a little jug and lived up to the creme Anglaise label – being thin and runny.
Reflections from last year:
Back in November 2015, I had this to say about Goodliffe’s (adapted from my TripAdvisor contribution at the time):
Siggy and I went to Goodliffes on a Friday night with another couple. It was a quiet night and there were two girls waiting on the tables and one serving behind the bar. We were shown to our table and were served our drinks quickly.
For starters we were tempted by the calamari and the baked Camembert but instead opted for granary bread, balsamic vinegar and olive oil, because we were saving ourselves for pudding. The bread was tasty and fresh and the quantity of oil and vinegar mix was generous.
It took some time to get our order in and there was a long wait for our mains to arrive – in the end, rather embarrassingly, we had to ask when our food was going to arrive. When it did finally arrive (I was on to my third San Miguel at this point and I’m not a fast drinker) they were excellent. Siggy had a pulled pork burger with fries, and the pork was hot (I find that pulled pork often cools down very quickly) and tasty. My friends had fish and steak. The fish was apparently really nice and so too the steak. Although I wonder if our rumbling stomach’s were made more appreciative by the wait?
I had a slow cooked ‘feather’ of beef which was too die for. Totally melt in the mouth stuff, with an excellent gravy, dauphinoise potatoes and mushroom mixture. For me the potatoes were excellent although perhaps there should have been more sauce. My main was on a par with meals I have had in London restaurants and I remembered saying on the night that the meal was like what Brown’s Lane (in Loughborough and home of the awful Caesar salad) used to serve before they started to slip chronically downhill.
Rather than try and collar one of the ever increasingly absent staff, we picked up some dessert menus ourselves and then eventually caught the attention of one of the girls and got our order in. One of our group opted for a cocktail which, while tasty, was diminutive for the price. My girlfriend had a white chocolate cheesecake, cherries and salted caramel ice cream. It was a strange combination and the ice cream didn’t have the wow factor we expected.
I had a take on an Eaton mess which was good, but had a bit too much cream versus meringue and wasn’t as good as the banoffee Eaton mess at Croma (in Loughborough and home to a great tiramisu). The treacle tart wasn’t as moist as expected and was too gingery for one of our party, so I ate it.
All told we were impressed by the ambiance and the food. The biggest let down for us that night was the service.
(Lured by the food, we went again for a meal around New Year’s Eve 2015: the service was much better and we had blast with some coffee flavoured tequila.)