The Lavenham Greyhound is one of Suffolk’s hidden delights. Found on the High Street, this is a buzzing restaurant offering some truly delicious tapas food, from small plates to sharing boards. With a wonderful outside space also available, book your table in one of England’s most historic towns now and enjoy some of the best tapas this side of the Med. Team nourish headed over to check out The Lavenham Greyhound.
The Lavenham Greyhound is one of many historic buildings in Lavenham, a town with a strong tourist pull, yet one that offers plenty of diversity in places to eat – with this relaxed and casual restaurant offering fine dining tapas and sharing boards in some style. Under Head Chef Robert Smith and a fantastic Front of House team headed by Jenna Clarke, The Lavenham Greyhound is a definite must-visit in a destination town.
Tapas is a true Spanish staple and Robert and his team certainly do their British version well, taking influences from all over Europe as well as the Mediterranean, and the menu is a tantalising read: pan-fried chorizo in red wine, crab linguine with chilli, garlic and parmesan, triple cooked chips with truffle mayo, halloumi chips, and seared sea trout with potato salad and salsa verde were just some of the dishes that caught our eye as they left the kitchen.
On arriving at The Lavenham Greyhound, Jenna and the Front of House team greet you with a very warm welcome, as though you were an old friend they had just met for the first time. The timber-framed building has bright bay windows at the front and just off the main room is a snug area. As you head towards the back of the building, there is a bright dining area leading to an impressive outdoor space. The bar area is packed with an array of drinks and spirits, including an impressive gin collection and a great wine list and local beers on tap. With fairy lights hanging off the beams inside, and the bright and airy décor in the back room, The Lavenham Greyhound is both inviting and cosy at the same time.
This was very much evidenced in the variety of people we saw coming through the doors. From elderly couples meeting up for lunch to mums-to-be, friends enjoying reunions and family gatherings, it is clear The Lavenham Greyhound is very much on the local map. And, having enjoyed the food, it is easy to understand why!
The main tapas menu is divided into meat, fish, and veg and sides sections, enabling you to hone straight in on your favourites. There are also sharing platters and hot sharing plates on offer. Robert and the team recommend two to three dishes per person or selecting some small plates and sharing platters, both hot, designed for two people, and cold to share – depending on how many of you there are, and how hungry you are!
We enjoyed a selection of tapas plates, choosing a range of dishes so we could enjoy the true flavour of The Lavenham Greyhound. Nothing went to waste as they packaged up our leftovers to take home and enjoy – one American hospitality trait that many over in the UK now offer.
We ordered chicken livers with Madeira cream on brioche (£7); Serrano ham croquettes (£6.50); tempura baby squid with garlic mayo (£7.50); fresh lobster with garlic aioli (£7.50); Andalusian chickpeas, spinach and tomato (£5); goat cheese and beetroot bon bons (£6.50); and a tomato, olive and feta Greek salad (£6). They also sent some fresh bread and butter, perfect for mopping with!
Everything was delicious, and the flavours danced on your mouth. The croquettes and bon bons particularly stood out – you know when you are full, but you keep going back for more? Yes, that… In between enjoying the food before us and checking out what everyone else was ordering, it is safe to say that The Lavenham Greyhound has truly hit the mark when it comes to tapas with flavour and punch. I think if you enjoyed these dishes outside with a cool beer on a hot summer’s day, you truly would think you were in the Med, they really were that good.
In fact, the food was so good that when Samantha went to stay at The Peacock Inn in Chelsworth, she visited again for lunch, this time trying one of the hot sharing plates. Having sampled the Serrano ham croquettes to make sure they were as good as last time – they were – she and her mum enjoyed the garlic, herb, and chilli chicken skewer. Served with triple cooked chips, smoked chilli relish, flatbreads and salad, this dish is great value at £24. This truly was a sharing platter, and it was thoroughly delicious. The chicken was tender and succulent, and full of flavour – something of a signature for Robert and his team.
Also on the menu among the sharing platters is paella, with chicken and chorizo, seafood, or vegan (£16, £17, £15) or chateaubriand with triple cooked chips, grilled tomatoes, rocket and pickled shallot salad, and peppercorn sauce (£55). They also offer four cold sharing platters – charcuterie or seafood, both £14, and cheese or vegan, both £12. You can, however, order one large mixed board with a selection from all four cold platters for £25.
As if all that were not enough, The Lavenham Greyhound also offer desserts, such as dark chocolate fondant with Chantilly cream (£7) and a vegan Lotus Biscoff cheesecake (£6.50) but we were too full to try them. On Sundays, they serve roast lunch offering three choices of meat, plus a weekly vegetarian option, priced £14-£16 including sides.
The Lavenham Greyhound truly is a great find – one where everything is done with passion and flavour. It has the added advantage of being in one of the most beautiful towns in the country, so perhaps now is the time to plan a visit to this lovely part of the world and enjoy tapas – Suffolk style!
- The Lavenham Greyhound is open Tuesday to Sunday 12pm to close, with food served until 9pm apart from Sundays when they serve until 4pm.