The Ginger Dog in Brighton is part of the Gingerman group, which was started by chef Ben McKellar, along with his wife (and business partner) Pamela McKellar, in 1998.
We have visited and enjoyed their flagship restaurant, The Gingerman, (located near the seafront in Brighton) and we are firm fans of the Ginger Pig in Hove. The Ginger Dog describes itself as ‘a local pub offering real ales, craft beers, and fine wines together with a good hearty menu of traditional pub food.’ Sadly, for us, the dining experience didn’t live up to our expectations.
Visited: April 2016
The presentation of the food
The choice of starters and pre-starters
Liquid desserts (cocktails)
The lack of interesting options for main courses
The price – we didn’t feel our meal was good value for what we ate
The wine list was uninspiring
We visited on a Saturday night and we eagerly anticipated the meal having been so impressed in the past with the Ginger Pig. What struck us initially was the slow (but polite) service and how limited the choices were for the main course. In hindsight we should have considered ordering a selection of starters to share instead of forcing ourselves to both order the same thing, the only thing that appealed on the menu – the lamb rump with anchovy crumb.
The short menu suggests that all of the dishes would be prepared with the freshest ingredients and the utmost care, which we didn’t feel they were.
While the presentation of each dish was excellent, the taste of some of them was flawed in one way or another. The braised pig’s cheeks dish tasted predominantly of stale, oxidised oil suggesting that the time to change the oil in the fryers was long overdue, and the lamb rump served with anchovy crumb was over-seasoned, too salty for our taste.
The one thing we did enjoy (from the pre-starter menu) was the braised octopus with beef dripping mayonnaise.
The “Liquid desserts” aka cocktails to round off the meal were fun, although the espresso martini would have been better without the over-use of egg white.
There were too many things in the meal that weren’t quite up to scratch and, considering the price tag, we were left unimpressed. I suspect they can do pub food (Steak, burger, fish and chips etc.) really well, however it’s trying to be fine dining and only achieving it in price.
For similar money the food is far, far better at the Ginger Pig.
Overall verdict and rating: 6/10
Cost of food: Around £150 for a meal for two including wine
The Ginger Dog
12 College Place,