The new winter menu at 54 on Bath’s fine-dining Level Four Restaurant is delivering exciting and fresh dining experiences, showcasing culinary skills and technology with exquisite complementing tastes and flavours.
Executive Chef Matthew Foxon says the new menu is taking diners on a food adventure. “It features hearty comfort elements, exciting flavour combinations, some playfulness, and, as has become the tradition at Level Four, sustainable sourcing of the best quality seasonal ingredients.”
Foxon says that the restaurant’s range of locally sourced products is growing, with micro herbs, greens, and vegetables from a world-class farm in Olifantsfontein as the newest local supplier in the mix. Emphasis continues to be on food providence, and the sustainable Jersey beef on the menu is sourced from retired dairy cows, fish is from the green list, and as far as possible, other ingredients are seasonal and sourced locally.
Foxon says the micro produce is featuring in several dishes in the new menu, adding delicious flavour, sweetness, textures, and eye-catching appeal to the meals.
He says that on the starter menu, highly popular signature dish – the Lobster Bisque with red pepper rouille, mussels, clam, prawn, and line fish remains unchanged. The vegetarian Buffalo Ridge mozzarella includes in-season pears poached in red wine with the complementary flavours of pesto, dried tomatoes, and balsamic. The Beef fillet Jersey Carpaccio has a citrus, Maldon salt and thyme rub and is served with sweet and tasty seasonal baby beetroots, parmesan, and powdered beetroot. Already very popular is the Yellow Fin tuna tartare, with avocado – at their best now, says Foxon – coriander, labneh, and lime.
The Foxon special is the clear ‘Miso’ broth with pan-fried scallops, which he describes as a playful dish that features a miso taste and an infusion of Asian flavours, as well as basil, mint, chilli, the jus of peppers, pickled micro vegetables, and a hint of seaweed.
The hearty Ham hock terrine with piccalilli, crackling, apple gel, and brioche, and the Butternut squash tart with a custard sponge and goats’ cheese, orange segments, and salty caramelised pumpkin seeds are both mouth-watering winter treats.
Unchanged and always popular on the main course menu is the ‘to share’ dry-aged Jersey rib on the bone, with sautéed potatoes, seasonal baby vegetables, béarnaise and peppercorn sauce. Other Jersey dishes include ‘Jersey’ beef fillet and braised short rib with parsnip, baby onion, confit garlic, and potato; and Jersey rib eye with mash or hand cut chips and pepper or mushroom sauce.
The ‘nose to tail’ pork dish “with a little bit of everything” is the ‘Soil Master’ pork belly, pulled, loin, smoked, chop, and crackling in red wine sauce, with fresh Brussels sprouts, cabbage and turnip. “It takes a lot of skill to ensure the correct portion quantities for whole animal use – and the brigade is mastering it to perfection,” says Foxon.
Also a big seller is the Dukkha spiced ostrich fillet with sautéed spinach, a glossy salt-baked pumpkin puree, and tender stem broccoli. “It’s a lovely simple and fresh dish where the elements speak for themselves.”
Fish dishes include the Sustainable line fish with butternut and sweet potato, mussels, and shrimps and clam beurre blanc; and the “flavour popping” Grilled Yellow Fin tuna with squid ink linguini and a touch of Mozambican peri-peri, onion, anchovy puree.
Comfort food on a cold night is the Porcini and cauliflower risotto, the soft cheese croquette with truffle oil and crispy onion; and a vegetarian favourite is the Homemade ricotta and tomato tortellini with sautéed vegetables and basil foam.
Perfect winter desserts include the Dark chocolate “classic” fondant with brandy ice cream; the “playful and for the sophisticated palate” moulded Chocolate bar pumpkin mousse, cranberry, pumpkin and bourbon sorbet, sharp and creamy carrot marmalade, and salty caramel; Coffee and mint panna cotta and dark chocolate sorbet; Créme brulee with winter berries; and Raspberry mousse, pistachio, and vanilla ice cream.
Foxon notes that the menu is “pushing the envelope a bit – we’re trying new dishes and seeing what our clientele responds well to. We know that most of them cook well at home; they are discerning and have high expectations when they dine out. We want to excite them and delight them with our intriguing flavour combinations, textures, and dishes.”
Foxon says the team is working very well together, “we’re evolving ourselves and excellent creations are the result”. As is the restaurant’s tradition, Level Four gives credit on the menu to the individual chefs who have created the dishes. The Level Four winter menu brigade includes George Tshabalala, Maria Letsoalo, Lefa Mosana, Precious Malebye, Thokzile Matekane, Themba Khumalo, Tshepo Moya, Lutendo Funyufunyu, Eunice Mohole, Albin Nel, Kyle Marshall, Steve Zwane, Philile Msibi, Andrew Ceruti, Phumzile Skosana – and a proud Matthew Foxon at the helm.
For more information on Level Four, visit www.tsogosun.com/level-four
All info and images supplied by Tsogo Sun