Merchants Wine Bar, Warwick, Restaurant Review
PUBLISHED: 17:06 04 February 2010 | UPDATED: 15:15 20 February 2013
'Original, English & Quality' was the motto dreamed up by brothers Jason and Brandon Critchell, the dynamic duo behind Merchants in the centre of Warwick.
They have completely transformed the premises, and customers are now welcome to eat and drink in the downstairs bistro-style bar or in the spacious first-floor restaurant. Either way, the food is fresh, seasonal, locally sourced and organic where possible. Menus are chalked on blackboards (a neat paper-saving device!) and the kitchen aims to please all-comers.
'Lights' offer an eclectic mix of small dishes ranging from grilled scallops with sweetcorn salsa to saut pigeon breast with honey, soy and fig salad, while more substantial offerings could include everything from T-bone steaks and bison burgers to nettle-stuffed chicken with tarragon cream sauce or roast teriyaki tofu with glazed green vegetables. To finish, it's back to school for 'gooey' treacle sponge or Eton mess. Real ales, glamorous cocktails and a lively global wine list provide liquid refreshment.
Merchants is also home to the Sweet Tooth Society, where aficionados gather for seasonal bonanzas featuring six dessert courses 'prepared in front of a salivating dining room'. The owners stage 'pub quizzes' (with questions interspersed between a three-course meal) and there are 'steak nights' every Tuesday.