Special occasions call for special dinners. Birthdays call for something extraordinary. Which is why, when turning a year older earlier this month, (no I won’t tell you my age!) I chose the gorgeous Panoramic34 in Liverpool to celebrate. Being a Liverpool boy, via Italy, I’ve wanted to visit Panoramic34 for a while but was waiting for a really good reason to go and decided turning the big (ssshhh) was as good a reason as any.
We started off the night with cocktails in a nearby bar and wandered along the docks to the venue. From the outside, the place is pretty impressive; an amazing tower facing the docks which is really modern and minimalistic. Taking the lift up to the venue you come out 300 feet above sea level, in one of the UK’s highest restaurants.
Although it was 9.30pm on a Wednesday, the place was full and there was an amazing buzz. We were immediately welcomed by the lovely staff who were so genuine and warm, I felt like I was visiting my own family. We were sat by the window, looking over the river and the restaurant behind us looked really great, lots of modern features while still holding on to that fine dining look.
I like wine (Italian….) and our wine waiter was extremely knowledgeable, helping us pick out a fantastic bottle of red. The earlier cocktails may have taken their toll as I can’t remember the exact name of the wine, but with the drinks and food ordered, we sat back to enjoy the view.
To start, we ordered a pigeon to share and when it came, the presentation was amazing. The bird was cooked to perfection and I almost wished we hadn’t decided to share as it was the perfect texture and taste. However, we also had mains, birthday cake and desserts to come so we were glad we had left room.
Although the venue focuses on classic British dishes, every plate has a little twist that makes dining at Panoramic34 Liverpool a truly unique experience. I was torn between the Cornish brill fillet which comes with octopus, and the rack of lamb with grapefruit, sweetbreads, peas and shiitake mushroom. I eventually decided on the lamb and my dinner companion plumped for the beef loin and we shared a couple of sides. When I started eating, my lamb just melted in my mouth and the quirky additions like the grapefruit and sweetbreads made it a dish that I’m unlikely to forget for a while. My partner raved about how tender the beef was and the beer sauce that topped it off, perfectly balanced the flavours.
As it was my birthday (did I mention it was my birthday?) my friend had brought along a cake which the Panoramic34 team had kindly agreed to serve at the end of the meal. However, our lovely waiter also brought over some tasting desserts which were complimentary and really finished off our meal. We had a bit of my cake too and passed the rest to the staff as they really deserved it: we had been treated like royalty the entire time.
We had a couple of espressos and an Amaretto and grabbed the bill before heading out into the night. It wasn’t a cheap evening but for the experience and the food that we had, we would have paid double
34th Floor, West Tower, Brook Street, Liverpool L3 9PJ