The Steam Mill,

Steam Mill Street,


CH3 5AN 

01244 329229

Artichoke in Chester offers classic French cuisine with a twist, whilst also being situated in one of the most picturesque locations in Chester. 

The restaurant is located on the canal at The Steam Mill in Chester. 

When looking for a delicious, fancy meal for a Saturday night, Chester is not short of choices boasting six venues currently on the Michelin guide. 

After coming across the website of Artichoke and becoming increasingly intrigued by the menu of small plates and pizza (a winner in my book) I booked a table. 

Despite booking just two hours before, the restaurant had space and when I arrived I was pleased to find there was a buzzing atmosphere even at our 8.45pm seating. 

The staff were extremely welcoming and even went out of their way to kindly inform us that the kitchen was closing at 9pm therefore for food orders we needed to choose quickly.

In my opinion, the menu is a foodie/experimental cuisine lovers dream. 

In the small plates section there is a range of vegetarian and vegan dishes, meat options as well as various seafood and fish choices. 

Then, if that wasn't enough already, there is a range of sourdough pizzas with some very interesting toppings such as; seafood, beetroot with pumpkin seeds and pear gorgonzola and rocket. 

Of course for those fussier eaters there are also options such as margharita, parma ham and mushroom.

Myself and my friend wanted just about everything on the menu, but knowing both our purses and stomachs wouldn't stretch that far, we narrowed down to three choices. 

We chose the Parisian beef marrow gnocchi which also came with escargot - snails!

The Leader: Parisian beef marrow gnocchi with garlic escargot. £8.50The Leader - NewsquestParisian beef marrow gnocchi with garlic escargot. £8.50The Leader - Newsquest (Image: The Leader - Newsquest)

 This dish was packed with flavour and perfect for garlic lovers. 

The garlic escargot were delicious, and although I am not really sure how beef marrow is meant to taste, I certainly enjoyed it. 

The gnocchi was a different consistency to what I have tried in the past presenting more of a potatoey consistency than a pasta - making it extremely filling. 

Next we ordered the duck in a basket that came as a duck leg with a side of fries. 

The Leader: Duck in a basket. Confit of duck, fries and blueberry ketchup. £9.95Duck in a basket. Confit of duck, fries and blueberry ketchup. £9.95 (Image: The Leader - Newsquest)

When this dish arrived at the table I found myself questioning if this is what we had ordered, as for a small plate this was certainly a huge portion!

The duck was delicious and cooked to perfection with good, old, faithful frites which had a flavoursome paprika seasoning. 

Despite my intial concerns the blueberry ketchup which paired perfectly with the duck and was not too overpowering or fruity. 

Personally, I think this dish could easily be ordered as a main meal for those not looking to share as the portion of chips was on the generous side. 

Finally, we ordered a pizza off the special board which was fresh chilli, squid, nduja and rocket. 

The Leader: Squid, chilli, nduja and rocket pizza. £14.50 The Leader - NewsquestSquid, chilli, nduja and rocket pizza. £14.50 The Leader - Newsquest (Image: The Leader - Newsquest) Although this pizza was on the pricier side compared to other choices on the menu, I couldn't resist seeing how squid and nduja went together on a pizza. 

My verdict? Delicious separately but I didn't enjoy them together as I found the flavour of the nduja left little squid taste.

However, I enjoyed this pizza and will certainly be ordering Artichoke pizzas again, but probably a different flavour.

The quality of the ingredients was evident in the taste of the fresh tomatoes as well as the tenderness of the squid. 

Overall, it was an extremely enjoyable meal which gave off a high-end taste and atmosphere with generous portions at a reasonable price. 

I will certainly be visiting again in the future to try more of the interesting menu and probably some desserts too!

Read more: