Photo of Alimentum in Cambridge, , GB
Photo of Alimentum in Cambridge, , GB
Photo of Alimentum in Cambridge, , GB
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Alimentum

Modern European Restaurant

$$$$
tasting menu • amuse bouche • bread • beef

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Alimentum has 20 Tips

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  • Photo of hayleyoats
    2 months ago
    We were really looking forward to eating here and having eaten in various 1 star restaurants feel we are accustomed to the level of service that accompanies food of this standard. I want to be clear that the quality of the food was great, each course of the seven course tasting menu was beautifully presented and full of flavour. Our feedback would be about the service - we had experience directly of 5 members of staff and the service ranged from Nonchalant and sloppy to engaging and delightful. No one person seemed to be responsible for our table. Every course was delivered to me, sat in the furthest corner of the table, by leaning over everyone else at the table, the plates were almost banged down and there was no thought in placing the plate to showcase the dish to its best. In some instances delicately balance elements of the dish toppled over but no apology was offered. The wine when poured was dropped on the table and down the side of the glass every time. There were a couple of the staff who delivered the plates of food and told you what you were about to eat delivered the description with as little enthusiasm as they could possibly summon and couldn't get away from the table fast enough. Wine service was slow and sporadic. There were glimmers of nice service from the two members of the team who appeared to be the most senior members of staff, where they would engage with you and check things and talk with confidence and knowledge, but still leaning over my dining companions to place things on the table for me. The venue it's self is tired with broken toilets and no clean hand towels to dry your hands. Seating is looking worn. Seated where we could view the kitchen through the window - presumably for us to view the kitchen activities - we witnessed staff members eating from the containers that have food in used to plate up our dishes with their fingers! It just feels that overall Alimentum has lost its polish and sparkle and needs a little focus on the overall experience and staff training.
  • Photo of turtle9
    2 months ago
    I had heard such good reports of this restaurant, so booked a table. Perhaps my expectations were too high, but we were so disappointed! The food was too expensive- £55 for a main course plus dessert- Which would have been just about acceptable if the quality was exceptional, but my steak (two tiny pieces which could not have weighed more than 4 ounces) , was tough and not flavoursome at all. my partner asked for green salad as a side dish, but was told this was not possible, presumably because the chef knew what should accompany his dishes! We did not care for the modern décor, but the service was excellent. Overall, very ordinary, and staggeringly over-priced.
  • Photo of Jaspercarrott
    2 months ago
    We picked this restaurant, as part of a special weekend away, as it held a Michelin star. As we have enjoyed meals at a number of such restaurants, we expected an above average level of service and food. The restaurant itself looked lovely & all started well, a lovely aperitif, canapés and a pleasant starter. However, the main course didn’t arrive. An hour and a half after sitting down, we enquired as to progress. We were told that our food was being plated up. Ok. Except after another 10 minutes, it still hadn’t arrived and the waiter had disappeared. So we asked the manager, who was also performing waiting duties. He apologised and went to the kitchen to enquire. A few minutes later, he returned, apologised again and told us there had been a misunderstanding between him and the kitchen and our food was now being prepared. By this point, we were getting a little fed up and it was getting late. The main course finally appeared. The halibut was fine but the aged sirloin beef had been rushed. It had been cooked quickly, was very rare in the middle and hadn’t been rested. The result was a very chewy piece of meat that was bleeding. We were offered complimentary desserts as compensation but as it was almost 10pm & we had been sitting down for almost 2 hours, we declined. From our perspective, the front of house management was poor. We were left for a significant period of time effectively ignored. Our wine and water were for the most part, topped up by ourselves. The manager was apologetic and said he hadn’t enough staff, he was at least 3 waiters down, as they were having difficulties in recruiting good people. We pointed out that from our perspective the service was disorganised & there just wasn’t the attention to detail that we were expecting. The standard we saw was woefully short of our experience with other one star restaurants. Although a small adjustment was made to our bill, we were still charged £160 for a disappointing meal and a disappointing experience. When paying Michelin starred prices in a Michelin starred restaurant, this really isn’t acceptable.
  • Photo of Alison R
    2 months ago
    Another lovely meal. Had the seven course option this time, loads of wonderful food. The ‘Black Forest’ dessert is amazing - make sure you leave room for it, incredible flavours. We managed to squeeze in a cheese course too and as always a great selection. My only issue was the service. Staff in front of house were slightly less attentive than usual but maybe I’m being picky.
  • Photo of GeorgieScarles
    2 months ago
    We had the tasting menu (£80). The amuse bouches were tasty, and the leek soup with haddock was delicious! The first course was beetroot with goats cheese which was disappointing...basically a huge wedge of beetroot with a very small canoli filled with cheese. When you go out for a meal such as this you expect to get dishes that you couldn't cook at home, and a 4 year old could have made this dish. However, this was followed by some very good dishes (quail, stone bass, beef and duck) all of which we really enjoyed. The 'gin and tonic' pre dessert shouldn't really count as a course as a scoop of sorbet and some foam doesn't really cut it even for a tasting menu and it should be considered as an added 'extra' rather than an actual course. The desserts were good and I appreciated that they were able to cater for my nut allergy by replacing the battenberg with white chocolate and raspberry which was lovely. The staff were friendly, but I think more of a show of the food should be made for a tasting menu as part of the experience is the theatre. Overall the food is good and I will go back when the menu changes to get a new taste experience, but there are tasting menus out there that give a better overall experience.
  • Photo of SimonNb
    2 months ago
    I dont understand the poor reviews on this site. Yes the location is out of town and the decor modern / not to my taste but the food, drink, service and cost all fine with me. Parking is easy at the NCP by the Cinema and a 2 / 3 minute work (but parking anywhere in Cambridge can be painful). The service was friendly and indeed prompt (perhaps a little too swift at times but the restaurant was fairly quiet for lunch with perhaps 10 / 12 covers). The food was inventive and tasty. We (2 adults) had wine, fizz, water, 3 courses, coffee for about £120 which all in all I thought was spot on. I think we should back Mark (and his team) as a local chef who is doing really fine things. Well done, this was our first visit, we will return in the near future.
  • Photo of varsityboydublin
    2 months ago
    A fine dining experience is about more than the food. One of the staff was fine and the other displayed a level of arrogance that I thought was left behind in the eighties. When we arrived he was chivvying our guests to decide on their course. I don't know if he wanted to get home but is was very rude. I was looking forward to this restaurant as I know that it was founded by the Michelin starred chef from Midsummer House. Alas it was a disappointing visit which I will not repeat. For the last five years we have used Cotto for our fine dining experiences or one of the Michelin restaurants in London which do meet our expectations. Alimentum will not be on our list of restaurants to visit.
  • Photo of 305AMS
    2 months ago
    There are some really negative reviews on here. We had a beautiful meal here. Food is fantastic, staff all friendly, service good and good wine list!
  • Photo of Rachael B
    2 months ago
    We took our daughter and three of her friends to Alimentum for lunch to celebrate submitting her PhD thesis, deserving we thought of some special treatment. We arrived at 2:00pm and were seated in a booth. This would have been very pleasant except for the fact that the seats were cracked and ripped making for slightly uncomfortable seating for us. Frankly I wouldn't have been happy with this in a greasy spoon cafe. Had the restaurant been shabby and characterful, I might have overlooked it but actually the external and internal appearance of Alimentum just resembles an office. The front of house staff were mixed. One female server was perfectly pleasant but the male server was pretty arrogant and talked down to our guests when asked about the menu choices. This was absolutely unacceptable. My daughter's partner, James, had secretly arranged for a bottle of champagne to be delivered to the table. This, according to the male server, was from "Jane" and he wouldn't be persuaded otherwise. The food was, admittedly, excellent and the wine list passable. But the general ambience and shabbiness of the place did not merit the bill for £277 for 3 courses which of course excluded "Janes'" champagne. I have eaten lunch at Michelin starred restaurants in London and Birmingham, and non starred venues all over the place, and am trying to compare like with like. I'm afraid Alimentum is just not up to scratch. Oh and no mention was made of the reason why we had visited the restaurant even though I had pre warned them. A simple "well done" or "congratulations" would have been enough.
  • Photo of FerretFancier
    2 months ago
    Despite looking like a rather distingue bordello, the tables are generously sized seating comfortable and there is space between. No stark experience this! Brave choice of location near the unfavoured end of Hills Road, but within striking range of the Station and numerous new flatted developments. We both choose from the set menu, which offered small portions of delicious food as you'd expect from a Michelin starred venue. Wine not too hectic a price, and views of the staff slaving in the kitchen was educational. Service excellent, lavatories sparkling, great for a treat or special meal to show your appreciation. Just ignore the decor. ;-)
  • Photo of nuglun
    2 months ago
    Four of us went to dinner. Decor wise it is very nice. Service is super slow...ordered a bottle of champagne at the bar and we were literally spitting feathers by the time they started pouring it out...then came the Canopies which are just awful...they look super but they taste foul...it seemed to us that in order to be so quirky and unusual what they tasted like seemed to have gone out the window..the flavours just do not work and a couple of us even had to spit them out. Ever hopeful we looked forward to the main course. Sat at the table and then waited and waited and waited , had to literally beg them to bring out some bread as we were just starving. Starters arrived which were even worse than the canopies...fish starter that albeit was a cold one was served absolutely freezing, we only ate it as were so hungry. Then we all had the Beef - just poor really really poor food. Intermittent palate cleansers mostly in inedible one being a tasteless bowl of foam??. As time was getting on the staff seemed to desert the main restaurant area and we spent over 20 minutes trying to get someone to take our drinks order. We spent a lot of money on this meal and it was just so poor and disappointing. We are all well traveled and have eaten in a lot of really good restaurants and quite frankly cannot believe that this place has been awarded a michelin star for the food. Would never go back
  • Photo of harrietbeck
    3 months ago
    I have never written a review but I felt it was needed. I came to the restaurant for my birthday last week and they asked if we had a dietary requirements. I told them I was allergic to fish. The first dish that came out was a white foamy goats cheese dish and the lady said that mine had cauliflower in it and my husbands has salmon. Well they got it the wrong way round and I had a big mouthful of salmon. I complained and they took both of our dishes away and brought the next dish. Not sure why we then had to miss out on that dish. The lady took no responsibility and said she hadn't been told about any dietary requirements despite been given a different dish from that on the set menu ( go figure ). Another lady came round and said we could have complementary coffee. And that was it. No are you ok? do you need anything? Complementary coffee??? I nearly ended up in a&e. Luckily my mouthful was mostly foam and I just felt peculiar for the rest of the evening and escaped anaphylactic shock. They clearly don't understand the seriousness of their mistake, hence the reason for this review. Good luck!
  • Photo of Hanna D
    3 months ago
    We had an amazing lunch with 11 adults and 7 children. The team was ever so accommodating,helping us modify the 3-course lunch menue for the kids to suit their preferences. The adults enjoyed the taster menue, and we all agreed that this was an eating experience of a life time. Max, the sommelier, was extraordinarily helpful and has passion for the wine was infectious. This was a lunch to remeber!
  • Photo of pelej0hn
    3 months ago
    Superb food and service, décor a little too modern for my taste, but I was comfortable and fed well.
  • Photo of Claudia  B
    3 months ago
    My husband booked the restaurant as my birthday treat and have to say we were both very disappointed. I am fortunate to have been to many Michelin star restaurants through work and have to say this is one of the worst restaurants I have been to. How it won a Michelin I do not know. My husband and I are both vegetarians which we told the restaurant at time of booking. Our amuse buse was a bowl of olives! Then the waiter handed us the menu and said we could not have anything of it as meat but the chef will make something up for us an I quote...not sure what as he will be trying out a new dish! I can not see why he even gave us the menu if it did not apply to us. All the dishes had the same flavoured green sauce so I do not think he was being that inventive. Also bran flakes seemed to be in favour and appeared on two of my dishes not my husband who was eating the same. The worse dish and obviously the restaurant does not sadly listen to feedback as I have just read a similar review is the inedible cauliflower and chocolate dish!! We were given chocolate dish with marshmallow which I was doubtful was vegetarian so did not eat as there was no point asking any of the useless staff as they were not interested in creating a special atmosphere. I would not normally complain but it was so bad and not a cheap experience. My advice is to avoid.
  • Photo of MrBloke
    3 months ago
    Ate here for the first time late August and had the 7 course tasting menu. Before starting the tasting menu we were brought a few canapés which were amazing (chicken liver with peppercorns, pork crackling with (I think) bacon and an amuse-buche of goats cheese foam with smoked salmon. Each of the seven courses was excellent, surprising flavours and perfectly cooked and presented. Particular favourites were the beetroot (first starter), beef (amazing depth of flavour) and the Black Forest Gateau (although it bears no similarity to other BFGs I've tasted). Service was excellent and the ambience was pretty good too. So why 4 stars rather than 5? Firstly, the location: Alimentum is on Hills Road, one of the main routes in / out of Cambridge and the outside activity isn't that well masked by the frosted windows. Secondly, we felt a little rushed with the food; nothing terrible, but just a couple more minutes between courses would have been good. Finally (and this was my bugbear of the evening), the wine just wasn't that interesting. I went for the sommelier's pairings and, out of the 7 wines, there were perhaps only 2 that really stood out. The rest were quite pedestrian and, given the quality of the food and price for the wine, really felt that Alimentum should have done better. I would definitely go back but next time would just order wine by the glass / bottle, rather than going for the pairings.
  • Photo of Oguh_56
    3 months ago
    Have visited this eatery several times since it opened. Sadly it is not what you would expect and it hasn't improved. One expects tasteful decor, enchanting ambiance and superior service from a Michelin Star restaurant. Unfortunately this restaurant has not had any of these since opening. As previous reviewers have noted, there is no ambiance, it is cold like a cafeteria and usually near empty. There is no outlook or view but the poor interior design does not compensate for this. Either the proprietor is misguided in thinking that diners would enjoy this space or is a touch arrogant. The dishes we experienced were not particularly noteworthy and rather average. There was no flexibility from the kitchen if you were vegetarian and the wine list seemed to lack inspiration. I'm by no means a difficult customer and I do wish Alimentum well but there is a lot to put right. The atmosphere, the decor and the inspiration behind the dishes and the wines. If this were my first visit to a Michelin Star, I'd never try another.
  • Photo of Amanda D
    3 months ago
    I have only written two reviews previously, and they have been to highly recommend exceptional restaurants - however - my partner and I were the first to arrive in our party of five for a business lunch. We had to sit in the stark and unwelcoming bar area. The place was deserted of customers (at 12.30pm). Ordered a glass of white wine and when asked my preference I was advised that each one requested was either not stocked, or was unavailable by the glass. I eventually settled for a mediocre Chenin Blanc. A staff meeting was obviously in progress at one end of the bar as a chef and two others where examining a plate of food. In summary for the remainder of our visit - Were seated in a booth with very uninviting ripped and tatty plastic seating. Upon visiting the bathroom the first cubicle I attempted to use had a broken toilet seat. My partner visited the gentlemans bathroom and encountered unflushed toilets and had to use the disabled/baby changing facility. For the duration of our whole experience only two other couples entered the restaurant and we were told by staff ' well it's only a Thursday ' ! Had we not been there as guests of someone else we would have walked out prior to ordering. To top it all, unless 24 hours notice is given as a no-show they have the right to charge up to £60 per person! Never again.
  • Photo of bernikp102
    3 months ago
    Flying in to Stanstead, we decided to head to Cambridge on a sunny day for a lovely wander around Jesus College and a nice lunch. We managed the first part quite easily, and then drove out of Cambridge centre to Alimentum. What followed was one of the worst dining experiences I can recollect. After finding the practically empty restaurant we perused the menus over drinks. I explained that I was vegetarian, and I try and keep dairy to a minimum, but not at the expense of a good meal. Canapés arrived. A cone of chicken liver parfait with puffed rice, a squid cracker and something else I'm told was forgettable and impossible to muster a flavour from. For me, the vegetarian, a bowl of olives(!). The restaurant manager, gave us menus and explained that I could have a vegetarian tasting menu, but they don't have a copy of it, or what it involves. It was made quite clear that she was not going to bother with making our experience even remotely enjoyable. Amuse bouches of salmon with goats cheese for the omnivore, and pickled cauliflower with goats cheese for me arrived. My partners immediate reaction was that it was not on that they hadn't even bothered to clean the water from the bowl. Mine was just a complete mess. The e'spuma canister had obviously run out during the process and left my dish looking like a sunken soufflé. Pics are below. Quite simple, they could not be bothered. Starters were actually fine. My beetroot with goats cheese (again) and lovage sorbet was enjoyable. The single time our experience was. My main course of cauliflower, pomegranate and 97% cocoa was one of the worst things I have ever had the misfortune to eat. The dish was an abundance of pickled cauliflower (again), luke warm romanesco, tepid cauliflower purée with some bizarrely acidic pomegranate seeds. There was also an acidic black liquid, and the highlight, a warm (I had seen it sitting under the lights for a good five minutes), tasteless brown piece of ridiculously bitter cauliflower. Asked for feed back, i explained that the dish was not nice to eat. The restaurant manager asked if it was the cooking. I stated that the dish was so acidic that it was inedible. It was so acidic and bitter and not even remotely approaching hot. The dish was left. A good five minutes later, she returned having been around other tables, to tell me that the chef was happy with it. He hadn't bothered to ask to see it. He hadn't been within ten feet of it whilst it was being plated up, so he must be exceptionally knowledgable to know that he's happy with a plate of food neither seen nor tasted (remember I sat watching through the glass). We asked for the bill and left. Without seeing a single member of staff. Mr Poynton, your chefs are quite simply taking the Micky out of you, your reputation and your business in your absence. Cold, inedible food. No catering for dietary requirements on a nine cover lunch service. If they are not, and you are happy with that, you are taking the Micky out of your paying public. I'm glad that your chefs were having a good time in the kitchen (I watched the whole service through the glass), because I can guarantee you that not one of your customers were. Your restaurant and your team ruined a perfectly good day with their nonchalant disservice to the restaurant industry, and charged us for the pleasure. Thank you. Well done.
  • Photo of AAVW_11
    3 months ago
    Food could not be faulted, very well presented and excellent taste. Service very good? Was rather disappointed to be seated at a table with torn and shabby fixed seats. This was pointed out but we were not offered an alternative table. I felt this rather let the whole dining experience down.

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