(Invited) Sans Patrie meaning ‘no nation’ or ‘without a homeland’ in French, is a small plates restaurant in Canning Circus in Nottingham. I’ve followed them on social media for a while but hadn’t had the chance to try it out when the email inviting me to dine dropped into my inbox. The menus and photos posted on Instagram always look delicious so I was excited to check it out.
Review of Sans Patrie Nottingham
Thankfully I went on Friday evening, not during the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme. This meant the restaurant was quieter than the early part of the week. I have heard Sans Patrie has been busy from brunch to dinner throughout the scheme which is really lovely to hear.
Located on Alfreton Road almost opposite the Organ Grinder, it’s a large, airy bar-cum-restaurant. With bright white walls and the most gorgeous teal colour feature wall and bar, it’s welcoming and relaxed. There are benches to accommodate up to 8 diners, intimate tables for two, high tables for four and window seating. There are also a couple of squishy leather armchairs if you fancy being relaxed!
I love the greenery on shelves and in planters around the edge of the space too, anything that feels like bringing the outside inside is good with me.
A fully stocked bar providing a range of alcoholic and soft drinks, along with a coffee bar dominates the space. There’s a good wine and spirit selection along with cocktails to choose from.
The menu isn’t just one cuisine, it’s a mix of everything which I like. It gives more freedom of choice. The menu changes regularly and focusses on fresh ingredients, everything is cooked fresh when you order. No microwave cooking here! Choose from buddies, tapas style small places, sides and GIANT flatbreads that are basically the tastiest pizza. All the dough is hand stretched and cooked in their pizza oven. It’s sourced from a specialist Italian producer and the quality is fantastic. More about that later. They also have a brunch menu. There’s plenty of choice for vegans too.
Both Eleanor and I chose to have the Rhubarb and Raspberry Collins. A mix of gin, rhubarb gin, raspberry purée, lemon juice and sugar syrup, it was just what the doctor ordered. Sweet with the sharp tang of lemon, it went down a little too easily!
What we ate
We opted for a range of dishes, and Eden our server advised on 4-5 between the two of us.
First up was the whitebait with garlic aioli. I love whitebait, super fishy, crunchy, deep fried, what’s not to live. The garlic aioli is made in house and had a good amount of garlic.
Next up was the heritage tomato salad. This was seasoned well with a little salt to bring out the flavours of the juicy tomatoes, and a sprinkle of parsley and basil on top. This was so refreshing and the perfect size for 2 to share. I will say that £8 is a little steep for this dish but it was lovely nonetheless.
Next was the asparagus with Dukkah and chimichurri – well that’s what it said on the menu. Now as I understand it, chimichurri is a mix of chilli, garlic, coriander etc. We didn’t actually get this but I didn’t check back on the menu until I started writing this. What we actually got was asparagus with Dukkah, a blend of nuts, sesame seeds and cumin. It was absolutely delicious and I have absolutely zero complaints. I wouldn’t have thought to put Dukkah on asparagus but it really worked.
Then we had the biggest prawns I’ve seen outside of Portugal. Four fat, meaty prawns, shell on, with a garlic/chilli dressing. Neither of us could actually taste the chilli but the garlic dressing was lovely. The prawns were delicious and perfectly cooked.
Last up, and my favourite dish of the evening was the wild mushroom flatbread. This was huge. We had half cheesy for Eleanor and half without for me. This worked really well as I would have scoffed the lot if required, but I’ve already put on enough weight during lockdown and believe me, I don’t need to add to it! The dough was thick and and spongy but with a nice crunch to the outside. It’s really high quality dough and I would eat it daily. The tomato sauce is rich and well seasoned. The mushroom were lovely, my only complaint was that there weren’t enough to satisfy our love of mushrooms. however I would honestly order this again. I know it’s classed as a flatbread on the menu but it’s 100% a pizza and it’s one of the best I’ve had in Nottingham, if not the UK.
I have to say a huge shoutout to the staff at Sans Patrie. Eden our server was lovely. She just exuded fun and happiness and was a lovely woman. Keelan and Billie in the kitchen produced some lovely dishes promptly and were chatty and smiley throughout. All three took the time to chat to us after our meal to get feedback, not knowing that I was going to be writing this. They are a credit to Sans Patrie and I hope to see them all again when I inevitably head back to eat there again.
I would recommend Sans Patrie. It’s a lovely setting, has a small but well formed cocktail menu and a great selection of dishes. This is just a small selection of their menu. I’d highly recommend the prawns and flatbread if you only go for two dishes, but I expect like me, you’ll leave wishing you tried the lot. Check Sans Patrie out on INSTAGRAM
*My meal and drinks were complimentary in return for a review. This hasn’t affected my judgement in writing this.