I was delighted to be invited to Orbis following their re-opening after lockdown to try some of the new cocktails and see the changes to the decor – we decided to eat there, too, as the menu has also been updated.
As soon as we arrived we were welcomed and shown to our table, Ellie checked that we’d been before and understood the small plates concept – I had, so knew what to expect, but it’s great that this is asked as I’ve seen reviews unfairly mentioning portion sizes as the reviewers haven’t understood the concept Orbis have for their menus.
We chose 4 dishes between us to share – the Polpetto Vegana (chickpea and spinach falafel-style balls), the Tequila Prawns, the legendary Cornflake Chicken with the delicious peanut butter mayo and the updated Duck Scotch Egg.
All dishes were delicious – we both loved the prawns, they were perfect and the other dishes were great, too, though I do miss the Black Pudding and Duck Scotch Egg, which has been replaced by the Chorizo and Duck version.
We were quite full after all those, but it’s hard to resist the dessert menu – Tony chose the Rum & Pineapple Fritters and they were lovely! Served with coconut ice cream, Tony likened them to Malibu rum – Pina Colada on a plate!
I chose the Honeycomb (Crunchie) Cheesecake, which replaces the Rolo cheesecake from the previous menu, and it was great. The desserts were really generous portions and just about finished us off!
The cocktails were what I was most excited about though, Orbis are possibly the only cocktail bar in Oakham (except their sister venue, Bill’s Bar) to offer such a good cocktail menu.
They have three cocktail menus:
Classics, with a French Martini, Bramble, Cosmo and more;
Their Signature cocktails / own recipes, including the new ‘Paintini’, which is a secret recipe and collaboration with Paint, a local beauty salon – a delicious strawberry martini, really well-balanced in flavour;
And a seasonal ‘Summer Cocktails’ menu, which includes a Pina Colada, the Orbis Ocean, which is a twist on a Blue Lagoon, and one of my favourites that I often make at home – the Japanese Slipper.
Through the evening I chose the Paintini, an Orbis Ocean and an Espresso Martini – a favourite of mine when done well, and this was done very well!
Bar Manager Ellie is an excellent mixologist and so professional in her cocktail-making and presentation.
The subtle changes to the decor – the flooring, the colour scheme, etc. – look great, but are still most definitely Orbis. We were sat in a lower-lit spot, it would have been good to have little more light, but it didn’t detract from the evening.
Overall, we truly enjoyed it all – the cocktails and food were excellent, and so was the service – the team at Orbis are so calm and efficient. They work brilliantly together – they are friendly and fun, but remain professional, and it was so good to see how happy they were being open again.
Find out more and book a table at www.orbisoakham.co.uk – they also offer delivery.