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At first glance it’s not immediately clear just what lies behind the frosted shop front in a pretty village-like enclave appended to not-so-pretty Birkenhead. Pint-sized Fraiche plays it low key, quietly concentrating on getting the details just right – from the bespoke sculptures and suede chairs in the intimate dining room to Michelin-starred chef/patron Marc Wilkinson’s highly idiosyncratic, single-minded cuisine. Working alone endows him with “high kudos”, and he pulls off all manner of Michelin-starred triumphs across a daily six-course tasting menu – from almond gazpacho with cherry and asparagus or roasted sweetbread with apple textures and truffle to a futuristic take on lemon meringue pie. Alternatively book in for the Salt Bench – a more casual offer based on ‘salty snacks’ supplemented by samplings from Fraiche’s monumental cheese trolley. The top-class, 300-bin wine list is a fine match for the food.
A visit to Fraiche always has me super excited. Since a really enjoyable Sunday lunch and all round experience from our last visit in September I looked forward to returning again. Alas this time was extra special as I had booked it for Mr Nom’s birthday albeit a weekend too late. Damn the three month advance booking system or probably more my general slowness when it comes to planning in advance. We were informed that some customers wait til midnight on the last day of every month in anticipation of the release of the next reservation slots...
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