Preserving our heritage is never an easy thing especially when that is tied up with a building such as the old court house in Cheltenham town center. Boarded up for many years this former grade II listed high court building has been given a new lease of life when Jamie Oliver opened up his new Italian restaurant inside.
Architects Stiff & Trevillion
Jamie Oliver posted on this website last July “this is a first class building and one Cheltenham finest. We’ve really gone to town on the whole restaurant and it absolutely oozes Regency charm” and he was not joking. Architects Stiff & Trevillion have keen to preserve the character of the court and all the furnishing have been kept intact, from the press box, bench and defendant stand to the public galleries, the seating has been cleverly incorporated into the infrastructure. Even the loos are housed in the cellars old cells.
Upstairs underneath the huge domed ceiling stands the bar and a prep area with its huge hanging hams & salamis where you can watch the chefs cutting meat.
We started with the italian bread selection and the meat antipasti plank with its selection of cured meats, italian cheeses and pickles, the knowledgeable waiter explaining what each item was in detail. The food was divine. Small amounts made you conscious to savor each taste and experience the flavour rather than just woof it down.
This was followed by Anglesey Sea Bass served with crunchy sweet and sour vegetables and a South Coast Fritto Misto (seaside risotto to you and me) with its mixture of fried fresh fish and shellfish. We also had sides of Polenta chips that had been fried with rosemary salt and pepper and Posh Chips drizzled with truffle oil and Parmesan.
There are times when words just fail to describe how good the food was, everything was cooked to perfection with amazing flavours. All of this was complemented with a pitcher of Pinot Pink and Presse Elderflower.
We finished of with desserts of italian ice creams and warm brownies that just sealed the evening.
Jamie’s Italian, Cheltenham
The Former County Court
County Court Road
Cheltenham GL50 1HB
Tel: 01242 500 193
Fax: 01242 500 197
Monday – Saturday 12 noon – 11pm
Sunday 12 noon – 10.30pm