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Review: Goat On The Roof, Newbury

Small plates are where it’s at in the restaurant world, so we trip trapped over to Bridge Street in Newbury to eat at Goat On The Roof – a new British tapas restaurant and wine bar, showcasing the very best UK produce.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire

THE LOWDOWN

Who’s that trip trapping over my bridge? Not the Billy Goat Gruff but Muddy’s galloping gourmet heading straight for Newbury’s latest addition to the gastro scene. Goat On The Roof, owned and run by Patrick Vaughan-Fowler and head chef Sam May, is a British Tapas restaurant and wine bar.

The location is a cracker. Right by the River Kennet, in the old Lloyds Bank building (formerly known as Arigato). The old vault is now home to the kitchen and the original door, which is about 20cm thick, is still hanging on its hinges.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire

Delicious food with a low carbon footprint is the name of the game, creating dishes from local produce and a foxy selection of organic and bio diverse wines from UK and Europe. When they’re not running the restaurant there’s a lot of foraging going on, pickling, growing of micro herbs and edible flowers form Patrick’s mum’s garden. The menu is basically a love letter to British producers.

THE VIBE

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire

On the ground floor you’ll find a light, bright, buzzy restaurant with a beautifully tiled food prep and bar. Upstairs is a wine bar with the longest sofa I have ever seen and people watching views of the high street.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire

There’s a european bistro style freshness to the interiors – think marble top tables, elegant wooden chairs and statement artwork. Upstairs in the wine bar is a bespoke blue velvet sofa that stretches across the length of the room, high tables and stools and a bijou bar with a great selection of locally produced drinks and lots of wine to tickle your tastebuds. It’s fair to say, the whole place oozes understated elegance.

SCOFF & QUAFF

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire Barbed Dart

There are 29 dishes, across six categories – Nibbles, Vegetables, Seafood, Meat, Cheese and Pudding – and a wine list featuring 58 bottles of organic wines, including orange wine. So let’s get this party started. First up the mysteriously names Barbed Dart – a mini skewer loaded with a quails egg, anchovy and pepper. Slip the whole lot in your mouth and let the flavour bomb go off. We also dived into the Wild Mushroom crisps, dusted in a cep power that tasted quite meaty – they were absolutely delicious.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire patatas Bravas

The Goat on The Roof’s version of patatas bravas – crispy potato with spiced tomato sauce and garlic mayo took three years to perfect. Time well spent because they were the best I’ve ever tasted. Achieving that crunch with all the liquid in this dish is no mean feat.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire mackerel and horeradish

To accompany the super-charged spud we had the soused line-caught mackerel with horseradish cream, Berkshire butcher’s steak with chimichurri and Rosary Goats’ Cheese with Berkshire Honey. Honesty, I couldn’t fault it. The food is delicious. The Barbed Dart was probably my least favourite but only because I wasn’t keen on the texture. Everything else I would eat on repeat.

Goat on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire
Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire puddings

We are nothing but thorough, when it came to the puds we tried the salted caramel tart with malted milk ice cream, Yorkshire rhubarb, granola and elderflower and whipped white chocolate cheesecake and New Forest strawberries. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, go for the tart. For something fresh and light rhubarb granola for you. For a taste of summer, it’s the strawberry and white chocolate cheesecake.

Goat  on the roof british Tapas restaurant Newbury Berkshire wines

As for the wines, we sampled some corkers – many I’d never heard of. We tried the Salamandre orange wine (£6.50 per glass) – a summer alternative for die hard red drinkers. It’s a type of white wine made by leaving the grape skins and seeds in contact with the juice, creating a deep orange-hued finish. It’s new to me, and I’m sold. If you were an ABC (anything but Chardonnay) gal, suffering PTSD from heavily oaked white wines, it’s making comeback. Goat on the roof have two on their menu one from France and the other from Wales. The French Blanc Sain Chardonnay (£6.50) was fruity, smoky with hints of honey. Patrick has chosen a list of natural and organic wines from European countries. You won’t find New Zealand, Chilean, Argentinian or US wines on the menu, because a) Europe produces exceptional wine b) it’s causes unnecessary damage to the environment. That Sauvignon Blanc wine rut is over.

Newbury canal bridge

OUT & ABOUT

You’re slap bang in the centre of Newbury town centre, so what do you fancy? There’s plenty of shopping and mooching along the canal to be enjoyed. Trot down the road to Newbury Racecourse for a fun day out at the races. A stroll along the canal is always lovely, you can take a paddle board tour if you’re super keen or just saunter along the towpath with a coffee in hand.

THE MUDDY VERDICT

Good for: The indecisive. It’s also a great place for a quick bite as those morsels of flavour fly out of the kitchen. The Goat on the Roof is pick and mix foodie heaven and the wine list, although not extensive, will introduce you to some really interesting, delicious wines.

Not for: The unadventurous. Lots of different small dishes may not light the fire of the meat and two veg brigade. Kids might struggle a bit. There may be too much flavour, texture and colour for their beige tastes. Best save it for grown up time out.

The damage: That depends how hungry you are. Dishes start at £3.50 and go up to £13.50 for steak. Two people could share four or five dishes for about £20. Wines by the glass start at £5. For food and drink of this quality it’s great value.

Goat on the Roof, 1 Bridge St, Newbury RG14 5BE. Tel: 01635 580015

4 comments on “Review: Goat On The Roof, Newbury”

  • Laura Hardy June 30, 2022

    I ate there last night and it was excellent. Also tried the mystery wine and was very wide of the mark!!

    Reply
    • rachel July 4, 2022

      You are brave to try the mystery wine. not sure I could name the grape and county of origin – but lots of fun trying. Hic

      Reply
  • Theresa Wright June 30, 2022

    We’ve eaten here 4 times now. Got my wine taste buds sorted and Patrick knows which ones I like. The food is always generous. We tend to go for the daily specials to ring the changes. Great venue interesting food well chosen wines. Makes a great night out

    Reply
    • rachel July 4, 2022

      The food is seriously good. Can’t wait to go back.

      Reply

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