I’m sure many people in Jersey have visited Banjo, some quite frequently over the last few years no doubt. There was a fantastic hype surrounding Banjo when it first opened and plenty of people wanted to get in and see what it was all about.
But that was back in 2012. Since then, we have all seen the exotic bar area, flanked by two leafy trees on either side. We’ve all experienced the the surreal waiting area outside the washrooms, where the walls come to life with colourful sea creatures at the flicker of each different shade of light.
So since you’ve probably seen all that already, that’s not what I’m going to show you! Besides, you can check out all those features in their gallery on the website.
I’m going to share a girly night out with you. So, after a quick weekend drink catching up with other friends in Bellagio’s, I headed off to Banjo for a girly dinner and to sample their menu, packed full of wintery goodness.
I have always liked Banjo, it’s a great place to meet with friends for a quiet drink at the end of the week, as well as enjoying a meal to make it an all night catch up!
On this particular occasion, the girls and I decided we needed some cheering up from the miserable weather and that a good dinner out was sure to fix that.
We pulled up a pew on the left hand side of the restaurant and browsed the menu’s … for quite a while as we were distracted by choosing the wine. Incidentally, we have all agreed on our favourite wine to have in Banjo, the very reasonably priced, exceptionally drinkable, Picpoul de Pinet, Domaine de L’Ormarine, Coteaux de Languedoc. Try it if you happen to go!
Having made this very important decision, we placed our various orders and dived in to the fluffy bread that had arrived and continued chatting away until the first of our courses arrived.
Now, I didn’t manage to get pictures of everything we ordered, mostly because we were all ravenous after taking so long to choose in the first place, so nobody really wanted to wait any longer for my photo taking! But here are a few of the starters we enjoyed…
My favourite dish of all time. If I see this or a version of this on the menu in any restaurant, it’s mine! Roast beetroot salad, whipped beetroot, creamy goats cheese, honey comb and truffle dressing. For me, there’s literally nothing you can’t like about this dish. It’s fresh and tasty and there’s certainly plenty of it, a total winner in my eyes!
Another plentiful portion arrived for my friend, a Spiced carrot and cardamon soup. My friend is a vegetarian and has a very discerning palette to go with it, but she gave this a huge thumbs up … to the point she wouldn’t even let me have a try!
I personally am not a vegetarian, I’m a very fussy eater, but not vegetarian. On this particular night though, I was drawn to their ‘vegetarian’ dishes, as they had a plentiful selection.
For main course, I opted for the Wild mushroom risotto with truffle dressing. I’m not going to lie, I’m a sucker for truffle also. Which is exactly why I also ordered a side of Truffle and parmesan chips, NOMMY!
Both were delicious and I stand by the fact there is no such thing as truffle overload! The only thing I would say, is that the truffle and parmesan fries kind of lost their taste after you got through the top layer in the dinky bucket. They could really have done with being shaken up a bit, I like even distribution!
A friend of mine opted for the Chilli salt squid, king prawn salad and nam jim dressing, which yet again, she loved! It was another generous portion, but if you’re on a health kick, maybe ask for a little more salad (or better yet, probably order something healthier!)
After all that food and wine, not one of us needed a dessert! You may also wonder why I keep banging on about the portions being so great, well, that’s because we had all ordered from the ‘small plates’ menu which was available at the time.
Yep, two “small” courses for just £18!* We were all suitably full and really enjoyed every single dish that was placed in front of us, the staff were really attentive, too!
So, even though the hype has died down about all the funky decoration, I can assure you that the food is still delivering in Banjo and we had a great girly night there. If you would like to try it out too, you can book on their website, or give them a call on +44 (0) 1534 850890. If you’re visiting from outside of Jersey, they’re located in St Helier town centre on 8 Beresford Street, so you shouldn’t have a problem finding them.
Let me know how your visit is if you go? Happy truffle munching!
(*Note that this menu may not be currently available, so it’s best to call ahead and ask what’s on before you go!)