One of Mr. Canny’s food blogging pet peeves is that when we discover somewhere we like there’s no guarantee we’ll be back any time soon. The reason is I have such a long list of eateries to feature on the blog that I’m not so keen to duplicate features on specific restaurants. If something changes I may ‘allow’ a return visit, which is precisely how we ended up back at The Herb Garden last week, much to his delight.
To be fair, Herb Garden is not somewhere I’ve dedicated a huge amount of blog space to historically. Mr. Canny tended to visit more than I did thanks to their £5 pizza and pudding lunch, although with his veganism he always complained that he could never eat the dessert as it contained dairy. The best way to describe it is pizza served on a wooden board that would make the Journal’s Secret Diner scream aloud. I personally don’t mind the lack of plates in here if I don’t think about the washing up!
The regular menu is exactly how I remembered and chose my well-liked Vegetarian friendly Calzone, which was stuffed with spinach, pine nuts, feta and Sundried tomatoes. We’ve since discovered that The Herb Garden has a specials board which features non-pizza options, which included a vegan meal for Mr. Canny. He was happy they also stocked vegan IPA, which he said was a great drink.
His Butternut Squash, Beef Tomatoes and Barley Risotto were not to my taste, especially the hummus and chermoula (a mixture of herbs, oil, lemon juice, pickled lemons, garlic, cumin, salt and fresh coriander, served in a shot glass). The tomato and pomegranate salad was fresh, clean and a great accompaniment, and the presentation was spot-on. At £15 it was on the expensive side when the Salmon and Quinoa came in at £16.
The bill for our 3 mains and drinks was £45.50. Bearing in mind the Canny Teen (Jnr has been ‘promoted’ since the Dinky Diner was born) had what would be classed as a standard Margherita Pizza with broccoli on top this wasn’t a cheap lunch option for us. It’s a good thing we enjoy the food and the ambiance, as well as finding the staff helpful and friendly. I personally prefer Cal’s Own or Pizzeria Italia, but Herb Garden is a decent city centre option for those fancying a handmade, authentic offering. They are to be applauded for featuring something different to cheese-less pizzas for their vegan diners, and it’s a shame we didn’t have time to try the vegan-friendly dessert on offer.
Thanks for reading,