Bingham Riverhouse Nourish Menu Review
Bingham Riverhouse Nourish Menu Review
Kate Byng-Hall tries a healthy and delicious dinner in Richmond
Any meal at Bingham Riverhouse is a pretty luxurious experience, and its new Nourish club menu – curated by wellness expert Karen Cummings-Palmer and cooked by Vanessa Marx – is no exception. The goal of the menu is to raise consciousness of the sustainability and nutritional value of what we eat, prioritising health while still being delicious.
We were first shown into the lounge – my favourite part of the restaurant – for a pre-dinner drink. The gorgeous high ceiling, beautiful décor and temptingly well-stocked bar set a chilled yet sophisticated tone for the evening. My companion and I opted for a non-alcoholic passionfruit cocktail which packed a tropical punch, preparing us for the flavour adventure ahead.
We also loved the aperitif – a carbonated blend of cold brewed Darjeeling, jasmine and white tea, served in a Champagne flute. Though alcohol-free, it did actually taste rather like wine, leaving a fresh, floral and fragrant taste in the mouth. I definitely could have drunk more.
Dinner was served in the library-style dining room, and Karen walked us through the nutritional choices behind each of the seven dishes. First, our palettes were cleansed and our immune systems boosted with a deep bone broth, followed by a delicious butternut squash and pumpkin soup. The soup was so rich and smooth it tasted like it had about a pint of cream in it, but Vanessa assured us it was just a splash – the vegetables themselves had been roasted to perfection and really sang. It was so good I want the recipe!
Next was a dish of quinoa and live peas (pea sprouts, in layman’s terms) with coconut, turmeric and ginger broth and a poached egg – so many superfoods that the list of nutritional benefits is endless. The egg was poached perfectly, but the quinoa and broth combination wasn’t for me and I’m not a turmeric fan. However, the accompanying mung bean noodles with shitake and reishi mushrooms were my highlight of the meal. Both the zero-carb noodles and the mushrooms were super silky, and the ginger tamari and garlic sauce gave a moreish umami tang.
I was most looking forward to the main. We had the option of either salmon or ostrich – like many of the other diners, it was my first time trying ostrich, which had been imported from South Africa and chosen for its lower emissions compared to cattle. I was expecting something like guinea fowl or pheasant, but the meat was more like steak – dense, and with a flavour uniquely combining red meat richness and gamey undertones. For my taste, I would have preferred a slightly longer cooking time and I would have liked more of the redcurrant sauce to cut through the richness, but I would definitely choose it again, especially with the Malbec which accompanied the meal. My friend assured me the salmon was cooked beautifully and the chickpea mash was a delicious twist on the potato original.
We rounded off the meal with a quartet of mini desserts, the sugar content of which was under one tablespoon combined. The oat and raisin collagen cookie was lovely and soft and the winter fruit crumble had that much-loved homely feel, but its cashew ice cream lacked creaminess and sweetness. The ‘Snickers’ pot was very intense – if you love peanut butter this will definitely be for you – and the little chocolate truffle was the perfect way to finish.
The meal lived up to the Bingham’s usual luxurious standard, and, for the most part, I could hardly tell that it used healthier recipes. This menu brings yet another interesting element to Bingham Riverhouse’s offerings, and is great if you’re looking for a guilt-free treat.
The menu is £35 for Bingham members and £45 for non-members, and will be available within weeks.