A HORTICULTURAL haven serving seasonal foods, floral cocktails and afternoon teas opens its doors to the public tonight (Friday).
The Lost and Found has taken root on Sheffield’s bustling Ecclesall Road at the former Pointing Dog site, which closed its doors in October.
The prime location is slap-bang in the middle of the main road and situated opposite the long-standing Italian, Nonnas.
Unlike other bars and eateries on the popular strip, the venue has a huge front garden with tonnes of seating, which made it the perfect place to sup fancy gins in the summer and people watch at its predecessor.
Thankfully, The Lost and Found team haven’t messed around with the garden layout, or changed the structure of the building — its high glass windows, long cocktail bar and separate dining areas remain.
But the team has gone all out on the decor — think floral, and then some more floral. It’s the perfect Instagram back-drop with its walls of climbing roses and ceilings covered in hanging planters.
The decor has taken inspiration from Sheffield’s industrial heritage, the nearby Botanical Gardens and — like the chain’s five other city restaurants — a mythical professor of horticulture called Victoria B Darcy.
Due to its grand appearance I was ready for the drink and food prices to cause some serious damage, but I was pleasantly surprised to find all the mains (excluding the steak menu) under £16.50.
And so with my new-found wealth I ordered said £16.50 dish — the glazed duck breast with stir-fried pak choi, spring onion, red pepper, sesame seeds and pineapple ketchup. It was a welcome hearty portion, really tenderly cooked, and came alive against its Asian-infused accompaniment. That dish alone would secure a second visit from me.
I’m one of those Millennials who identifies as a ‘flexitarian’ — I don’t eat meat at home so when I do order it out, it’s savoured much more, and this dish was definitely worth the wait. Quality over quantity any day.
My friend enjoyed the charred half chicken tikka with Asian slaw and sesame seed dressing (£12) — again a good-sized and flavoursome main - which meant we hardly touched our sides (veg and chips both £3.50), which were up-sold by the waiter. For once, it felt very satisfactory to be full from good quality mains instead of having to fill up on extra dishes.
But there’s always room for dessert and so we shared a white chocolate and winter berry Eton Mess with vanilla cream, fresh blackberries, cherry meringue and raspberry sorbet (£7.50), which can also be upgraded to include an accompanying cocktail (£10).
The cocktail menu also boasts some cute gimmicks, like the tipple that comes with a personalised Polaroid for all those "picture or it didn’t happen, peeps".
Overall, it’s a safe but reliable menu that will please all the family — pizza, pasta, risotto, salads — but it’s the elegant, Victorian-style furnishing that sets it apart and is somewhere you could comfortably lose a whole Saturday, going from brunch to bubbles to coffee and cake.
The Lost and Found is sure to be a success — there’s such a huge appetite for weekend bottomless brunches, afternoon teas and Sunday roasts, all of which it serves up — but only time will tell if it has staying power on a road well-known for its ever-changing shop fronts.
For more information, visit the-lostandfound.co.uk/restaurant or search @victoriabdarcy on Instagram.