I’m sure it’s appeared on my blog a couple of times before but Aurora has to be one of my favourite restaurants in Ipswich. The food is always good, there’s always a decent atmosphere and the service is consistently good. Whether you’re going for after work drinks, weekend cocktails and light bites, Sunday lunch or a special occasion, it’s the place to be. I just love the large windows, which allow so much natural light in and offer amazing views of the marina. Jake and I went on Bank Holiday Sunday for a leisurely lunch – and I was surprised to see the restaurant so full.
The Bank Holiday menu was a set menu, priced at £23.50 for three courses – and there were plenty of options for all three courses. Being a Sunday, there were two roast meats on offer: beef and chicken, as well as fish and vegetarian options. We were totally spoilt for choice and even I was unusually indecisive – in fact, there were three starters I had my eye on!
In the end, I began with the chicken liver parfait, served with toasted brioche and a beautiful onion chutney. Like every dish, it was presented well – every plate always looks aesthetically pleasing, clean and simple. The parfait wasn’t too rich and was so light and moussey, complementing the chutney well (which wasn’t too caramelised, nor sharp). I could have done with another slice of brioche, it was just divine.
To follow, I always knew I was going to opt for fish, with Pollock and lemon sole on the menu. I chose the whole grilled lemon sole, served with new potatoes and salad, with a parsley butter. The fish was cooked to perfection and just flaked off the bones – although I did make an absolute mess of deboning it. The whole dish was just so light and fresh, it was the perfect summer lunch. It was honestly the nicest fish dish I’d had since a meal in Ferragudo, Portugal last September.
To finish, I chose the tropical fruit salad and I’m so glad I photographed it (even if the picture doesn’t do it justice). It was a selection of tropical (read, my favourite) fruits, in a lime syrup, served with fruit crisps (apple and pineapple) and sorbets (apple, mango and blackcurrant) which were perfectly quenelled. The plate tasted as amazing as it looked, the fruit elegantly sliced and diced. I couldn’t believe how thin the slices of pineapple were on the base, but they tasted incredible! The passion fruit and dragon fruit was a winner for me, though! Jake chose the panna cotta which looked equally as good – and it came served with strawberries and piped meringue. It’s like we were competing for summer on a plate!
Had we stayed, there was live music downstairs from 3pm and we could hear it as we left. There’s a great atmosphere, even when there’s no music going on – but more so when there is; it gets so busy and outside on the waterfront is buzzing. I don’t think I could recommend Aurora enough – although a colleague recently went, following my rave reviews. Plus, the frozen strawberry daiquiris are to die for!
Love, Lucy xx