On Saturday night Andrew and I decided to get dressed up and have a proper “date night” for a change. Sure, we do eat out a fair bit, but it’s always very casual and usually involves a quick visit to our local balti house. We’ve both been working so hard lately and haven’t had an excuse for a nice meal, so decided to just pick a date and do it – settling on The Case in the city center.
I’ve only been to The Case once on Valentine’s Day many years ago, before I was a vegan. I remember having a pretty nice experience but not being blown away, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect this time around. When I made the reservation I asked if they catered for vegans and was told that the chef was more than happy to make vegan dishes. So far, so good.
The Case is located in town, right next to the very popular St Martin’s Square. The restaurant has been around for 25 years, serving up sophisticated English dishes in a lovely setting over four floors. We arrived a bit early for our dinner in order to have a drink in the downstairs champagne bar first. We were then shown upstairs to the restaurant once our table was ready, and were seated in a little mezzanine-type area in the corner of the restaurant that gave us incredible views of the sunset over the Leicester Cathedral. Inside, the restaurant is simple but not overly trendy – plain wood floors, white-panelled walls, ambient lighting, leafy trees all lend to a sort of nostalgic feel, only to be further amplified by the motown-style music playing in the background.
As soon as I was seated, our server handed me a specially-made vegan menu which had three starters, three mains and four desserts. I actually struggled for ages deciding what to get – it all sounded so nice. I finally decided on the salad for my starter and the grilled artichoke and quinoa plate for my main. While the wine menu doesn’t list vegan wines, we were able to google a nice sauvignon blanc from the menu that was vegan-friendly to go with our meal.
The salad starters were absolutely delicious and so colorful (I’m a sucker for vibrant looking plates). There were three different tomatoes in the salad, each of which were so sweet and bursting with flavor (unusual for this country), along with jersey royal potatoes, mixed greens, radish and crispy shallots. The chive dressing was delicate but perfectly flavored – pulling the entire dish together nicely.
My main course looked deceptively simple, but was divine. I was a bit surprised to realize the dish was made up of Jerusalem artichoke (rather than regular artichoke), but having never had it before was blown away by just how tasty it was. All the flavors were delicately balanced, and made for one of the best vegan mains I’ve ever eaten in a restaurant. We also had a couple small sides to go with the dishes – and everything we had complemented the meal so nicely.
I opted not to have a dessert as I’m really more of a chocolate person than a sweets person (if that makes sense) and instead opted for a double espresso.
Not to be a cliche – but the evening overall was quite magical and very romantic. The sunset, good wine, delicious food and friendly servers made for the ideal date night. I would definitely recommend considering The Case for your next special occasion (or just an overdue date night).