Events,  Food & Drink,  Lifestyle,  North Wales

Dinner & Show | Venue Cymru, Llandudno [AD]

Monday nights are usually quite uneventful. A bowl of pasta, a episode of Vera, and an early night. Not this Monday. We’re off out. Dinner and theatre at Venue Cymru, Llandudno. That’s fun for a Monday.

Venue Cymru have kindly invited us to experience their “Meal & Show” package and we couldn’t be more excited.

BUT FIRST DINNER

THE VIEW | I’m sitting here in Y Review, Venue Cymru’s 5* Hygiene rated restaurant gazing across the sweep of Llandudno Bay. It’s hard to believe there’s a better view in town – the lapping waves, the majestic pier, the Victorian promenade, the backdrop of the Great Orme – all bathed in warm evening sunshine.

FIRST THOUGHTS | Our table was booked for 6pm and it turns out that 90 minutes is the ideal amount of time to enjoy a relaxing 3 courses whilst not feeling at all rushed.

FOOD NOTES | For someone who skips right through the meat options straight to the fish and veggie dishes, Y Review is rather impressive. 5 out of 6 starters are fish/veggie, and 50% of the main courses too. This is quite marvellous. Neither Mr Bond nor I eat meat – for different reasons – so we’re very happy with such a lovely choice.

Most restaurants mark their Gluten Free (GF) and Veggie (V) options these days but not everyone identifies the Dairy Free (DF) choices. Y Review does all 3. This makes it a great spot to cater for all the dietary needs.

STARTERS

Options include a chargrilled chicken caesar salad, king prawn and bean broth, Goat’s cheese mousse, and a homemade tomato soup. Mr Bond chose the Warm asparagus with pickled wild mushroom salad, bacon dust and a port reduction. He gave it 10/10.

My choice was the Smoked salmon parcel filled with crab and cream cheese with a lime and chive dressing. A lovely light dish to perfectly compliment the sea view.

MAINS

Portion sizes are often tricky to get right. There’s a fine line between the “taster” type fine dining portions and the “belly buster” that leaves you needing to have a lie down. We think Y Review have got it just right.

Mr Bond chose the Saffron, parsley and artichoke risotto with crumbling Perl Las Cheese. Presented on the plate like a work of art, it was equally tasty. The locally made Perl Las cheese, available to buy at Bodnant Welsh Food – is a “must try” – delicious melted in a summer risotto.

All the main courses are served with slow cooked and pureed carrot, a tasty touch. You can order other sides including beer battered onion rings, chunky chips, green salad or honey roasted veg.

Grilled filled of Seabass was my choice – served with roasted Nicoise salad and red pepper dressing. Whoever thought of roasting nicoise salad is simply a genius. It’s the perfect taste of the French Riviera combined with the warm comfort of home. I would often choose Seabass in a restaurant and let it be known – this little fish was one of the best I have ever eaten. Soft and flaky, perfectly seasoned, full of flavour, crispy skin. What more is there?

DESSERTS

One of the great benefits of having light and summery first courses, is that there is – happily – always room for dessert. The menu offers 4 crowd pleasing options – Panacotta, Brownie, Pavlova and Cheesecake. After much deliberation between the Pavlova and the Panacotta, Mr Bond eventually settled for the Lemon Panacotta with strawberry compote and blackberry sorbet. It reminded me a lot of Creme Catalan, a favourite of our Spanish holidays. Very lemony with the perfect wobble.

I fancied the sorbet and chose a mixture of Lemon & Blackcurrant Sorbet. Iced, tangy and totally palate cleansing.

We skipped coffee in favour of finishing up the large glasses of wine we’d ordered. Mine a Zinfandel Rose, his a Ponte Merlot.

IT’S SHOWTIME

Is there anyone who doesn’t love Agatha Christie?

Did you know she almost didn’t become a writer? She moved to Paris at 16 to train as an opera singer. Having failed to impress, she tried a career as a concert pianist, but couldn’t control her stage fright. So writing it was. Thanks goodness. Fame didn’t arise until her 7th novel in 1926 – the Murder of Roger Ackroyd – by which time our mutual friend Hercule Poirot was well established.

The first stage adaptation came almost 25 years later with Ten Little Indians, closely followed by The Mousetrap, premiering at the Theatre Royal Nottingham in October 1952.

It’s the longest running show of any kind in the history of theatre. Imagine how surprised Agatha would be – she thought it would run for 8 months.

” It is the sort of play you can take anyone to. It’s not really frightening. It’s not really horrible. Not really farce, but it has a little bit of all these things and perhaps that satisfies a lot of different people”

Agatha Christie

‘The Mousetrap’ is described by the Telegraph as “the cleverest murder mystery of British theatre”. Agatha Christie is right – it’s a little bit disturbing, a tiny bit horrible, quite funny and very memorable. And there’s a 60 year old tradition that must be respected. Once you’ve seen The Mousetrap – you can never tell anyone who did it. That way it stays fresh and exciting for all the future theatre-goers – for the next 60 years and beyond.

I’d thoroughly recommend you get some tickets quick, and if you go – look out for the mantelpiece clock. It’s the original clock from the 1952 premiere.

FINAL THOUGHTS

We’ve never done a “dinner & theatre” evening before. Except in New York for Les Miserables but that was years ago and a lot more frantic! We’ve seen quite a few productions at Venue Cymru – loved the show, but usually bolted down our dinner at home and dashed into our seats at the last minute. There’s a lot to be said for arriving early and making an evening of it. It raised it to the level of a properly memorable evening, especially as we were invited to interval drinks with the Press Reception. Fabulous cupcakes too, made by yours truly.

THE VERDICT

PRICE | Meal & Show Ticket £50 per person, no drinks

RATING | Must try

SCORES ON THE DOORS | 5/5 FSA/Local Authority Food Rating

We had the loveliest evening, left feeling well looked after and happily full. The atmosphere was relaxing, the view stunning and the food very good. Especially good for those trying to eat less meat. It’s definitely a “must go” for locals and visitors alike.

NEED TO KNOW

WHERE | Venue Cymru, Promenade, Llandudno, LL30 1BB

WEB |https://venuecymru.co.uk

SOCIAL | https://www.facebook.com/VenueCymruLlandudno/

TEL | 01492 87 2000

RESTAURANT HOURS | Tue-Sat 12-2.30pm | Evenings 2.5 hrs before performance

Disclaimer: I was invited to Venue Cymru / Y Review to review their “Meal and Show” package so our meal was complimentary but we paid for our own drinks. As always, you are getting my honest opinion on the whole experience.

Have you tried Y Review Restaurant? What did you think? Leave me a comment below and share your thoughts.

2 Comments

  • Sheila Hibbs

    Hi. We have been to Y Review 4/5 times a year, for many years. We agree with you about the food being excellent. However over the last couple of years, we have noticed a change in the menu, there isn’t the cicken/lamb dish on any more. In May the only option for 2 of us to chose was the duck, which very unfortunately wasn’t up to the usual standard. We are going again this weekend, giving it another try. The menu doesn’t change as often as it use to, which isn’t good for regular visitors. However we have always been pleased with the service of the staff and it is obviously very convenient for the theatre. The lunch menu is highly recommended.

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