Review: The White House Southport
What a transformation we’ve seen taking place at The White House in Southport.
The former cafe at Southport Golf Links, our town’s municipal golf course, has sat empty, crumbling and frequently vandalised over these past 14 years.
The past nine weeks has seen Sefton Hospitality Operations Limited overseeing a team of builders from Mustard Seed working feverishly around the clock in a Grand Designs style makeover.
One of Southport’s most beautiful art deco buildings is back, as a new destination for food lovers.
It’s a huge boost for people who play at Southport Golf Links, to suddenly have such a magnificent facility back on the grounds. It should do wonders for new memberships.
But this is a venue for the whole community to enjoy too.
It’s been designed as a brasserie and bar with great quality food and excellent service.
25 new jobs have been created, with a smart new hospitality venue in a location with nothing else nearby. It’s a superb addition to the area.
The venue is open from 8am, serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and afternoon tea.
The interior design is beautiful, the attention to detail fantastic.
There’s a real wow factor as you walk in. The main dining room is really bright and modern looking, with lots of natural light flooding into the room.
Much of the furniture has been restored and upcycled, with a real respect for the building’s architecture and heritage. Original features such as the old fireplaces have been maintained and revamped.
There is a private dining room to the left, which is perfect for intimate celebrations or meetings.
To the back of the building – or the front if you are walking off the golf course – is ‘Spike’s Room’, where golfers in their spiked shoes can walk in and grab a drink or a bite to eat.
Thanks to local disability campaigner Debbie-Lybn Connolly-Lloyd, there is a real drive in Southport at the moment to improve accessibility in hospitality venues.
It is great to see that The White House now has a new disability access toilet and baby changing room and a slope leading to the front door instead of stepped access.
The men’s and ladies’ toilets have been greatly improved.
Huge thought has gone into the menu from Head Chef Danny Bache, who has created some top end versions of popular favourites such as Chicken Caesar Salad ((£14.50), Spikes Burger (£12.50), and Lemonade Battered Haddock (£14.50).
There are some really inventive dishes too.
My wife and I called in on one of the preview nights, with the kitchen perfecting their dishes and service ahead of the opening weekend.
We started with two of the more unusual dishes, which I hear have become real talking points during recent taste tests.
Fried Cauliflower, with black sesame and tofu puree and pickled daikon (£6.50), was a real first. I have never tried daikon before, and couldn’t imagine what a tofu and black sesame puree would be like – I’m not the world’s greatest tofu fan.
The dish was a triumph. Crunchy, spicy cauliflower worked perfectly with the tangy daikon and the delicious smooth puree.
Thai Style Tiger Prawns with popcorn cockles and mussels with crusty bread (£13) is a beautiful creation for seafood lovers. Since The Forge closed, Southport has a real lack of great seafood restaurants, and it was good to see quality seafood featured prominently on this menu.
For mains we tried a Smoked Haddock and Tarragon Fettuccine with crispy Parmesan and cured egg yolk (£17). The smoky, flaky haddock with the unctuous egg and smooth, freshly made pasta, topped with a large Parmesan tuile, was fantastic, perfectly balanced.
Roasted Aubergine with flaked almonds, pearl cous cous, oak smoked paprika pesto (£15.50) was a real star dish. The levels of flavour it packed were immense.
Years ago, I would always avoid anything vegan or vegetarian on any menu. They were usually the afterthought dishes, bland and uninspiring. At venues like White House Southport, they’re often the highlights of the menu.
There is great choice, with seven starters, ten mains, and five desserts, which included Dark Chocolate Delice, White Chocolate and Honey Blondie, Home-Made Manchester Tart, Wild Berry Pithiver and Trio of Cheeses.
There is a good selection of Sides such as Roasted Hasselback Potatoes, Truffle Parmesan Fries and Orange and Garlic Heritage Carrots.
Sauces include Bearnaise, Peppercorn, Diane and Cafe de Paris Hollandaise.
There is also a Spike’s Bar menu with soup and a sandwich, a choice of sandwiches, cake and coffee or breakfast baps; and a Kids Menu.
The venue is open from 8am each day and an impressive looking Breakfast Menu includes dishes such as: Oaked Salmon Kedgeree; Ham Hock Eggs Benedict; Black Pudding Filled Fried Bread; and Colombian Eggs with Fresh Avocado.
The White House Southport offers exciting, vibrant and inventive food in a beautiful setting, creating 25 new jobs and transforming a beautiful art deco building that had been through a rough few years.
It’s a welcome addition to the food offering in Southport.
- For more details about The White House Southport, or to book a table, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit: thewhitehousesouthport.co.uk
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