It’s OK folks I haven’t won the lottery and I’m straight back in Maccy D’s with the kids today but boy did we enjoy our special treat at The Ivy Norwich.
We’re definitely not rolling in it but sometimes its really important to make time for the special people in your life. It’s a rare occasion when I get to spend time with my mum and sister kid free because usually one of us is on babysitting duty so to do a bit of Christmas shopping followed by afternoon tea in The Ivy was just what the doctor ordered!
It’s definitely worth a splash out to feel like a queen or king for the afternoon and my mum’s face was an absolute picture as we walked in to the elegant city center brassiere. The Ivy Norwich features eye-catching yet refined interiors designed by the acclaimed Martin Brudnizki Design Studio, with the brasserie’s signature green colour palette sitting against striking leather banquettes, polished marble floors and bronzed antiques. Lucy loved the opulent monkey wallpaper and attention to detail she also remarked at how she wanted her house to smell as good as the Ivy loos! Although prepare for a climb up to them, I felt like rocky by the time I got there 😂😉
A Warm Welcome
The Ivy looks especially beautiful at the moment as it’s all ready for Christmas but the decadent decor and sumptuous furnishings give it a warm and inviting feel great for when it’s cold outside. Don’t be fooled, The Ivy isn’t just for visitors to Norwich or the wealthy elite, they look after their own here which I love and hold back tables daily for locals and walk-ins.
The customer service is what you would expect from this caliber of establishment… excellent! From the moment we walked in and our coats were taken Gi Gi was on hand to cater to our every need but wasn’t intrusive, and was also very knowledgeable about all the different menus from modern British classics for breakfast, weekend brunch, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner there’s a lot to get your head round. We opted for a afternoon tea but I’d love to go back to try The Ivy Collection Shepherd’s Pie.
If you have any dietary requirements other than mine of ‘always wanting more’ The Ivy is on hand to cater for guests with their particular needs. Lucy hates fruit and veg, (seriously I’m not joking I use to chase her round the living rooms with bananas as she has an absolute fear of them) but Gi Gi was not fazed by replacing the cucumber fingers for Lucy. Everyone is catered for… vegans, vegetarians, dairy-free, wheat-free… the list went on and with a separate preparation area in the kitchen I would be confident dining here with the kids if they had any allergies which I know can be a real worry for some parents who almost fear dining out in case there’s a limited choice or chance of cross contamination.
Kids you say?
Yes, the little whipper snappers are more than welcome to dine at any of their daily sittings. There was a lovely baby called Freya in when we were there and they couldn’t have been more accommodating – that’s the lovely thing about The Ivy, it has all the elegant splendour you would associate with the London branch but feels much more inclusive.
Now to the grub
We had the Champagne Afternoon Tea. Mum’s not a drinker so went for a virgin mojito which was beautifully presented and fresh and not over sweet which is my usual complaint. The champagne was crisp and full of bubbles and we were well on our way to a fab afternoon.
Our afternoon tea included Truffled Chicken Brioche Roll which Lucy could have eaten about a hundred of,
Marinated Cucumber and Dill Finger Sandwiches and my favourite, the Smoked Salmon on Dark Rye Bread with Cream Cheese and Chive. Every morsel was delicious and we made short work of the savory section.
Next up was the desserts, I waited to eat my Warm Fruited Scones with Dorset Clotted Cream and Strawberry Preserve with my coffee at the end. The Raspberry Cheesecake had a great sharpness and velvety base. Mum nearly inhaled the Crème Brûlée Donut whole but restrained herself long enough to tell us how creamy and light it was.
The Chocolate Salted Caramel Mousse though was THE BEST topped with carefully placed edible flowers. It was a tiny layered marvel – my only complaint is that I wanted more, like Oliver Twist I wanted to scream “Please Sir can I have some more” but I think that would have potentially ruined the experience as after my latte (mum and Lucy opted for tea) and scone I was pleasantly full without feeling heavy or stuffed and left feeling I hadn’t added pounds to my already portly tum!
I will be back soon to try their extensive cocktail list which features drinks inspired by the local area, including an Iced Martini and Felbrigg Gardens with Norfolk’s Boadicea Gin. I wonder what they could do with Norfolk Gin, although I’ll need to get on to Jonathan as I couldn’t see a bottle!
Finding The Ivy
The Ivy is on London Street replacing the old ‘Gap’ store. The bar is open all day for breakfast, weekend brunch, lunch, afternoon tea, light snacks and dinner, Monday to Sunday
Monday to Saturday: 8am to 12.30am
Sundays & Bank Holidays: 9am to 12.30am
Afternoon tea is available daily from 3pm to 5pm
If you have still got Christmas presents to buy an Ivy Gift voucher (available to purchase online via the restaurant’s website) would be an excellent idea for even the most difficult to please aunt or uncle.
Even though our afternoon tea was a special treat they also have a set menu for an inexpensive dining experience: 2 courses £16.50 | 3 courses £21, available Monday – Friday, 11.30am – 6.30pm
Everyone deserves a little bit of indulgence now and again so get yourselves down to the Ivy, I hope I see you there
To book, order gift vouchers or just to find out more, visit their website theivynorwich.com