Ade Hill meets Nathan and Michelle Siddle and discovers COLJAN Café, Wine Bar and Restaurant in the heart of the ancient Stannary town of Ashburton…
Tell us more about Coljan Cafe Bar & Restaurant?
Coljan is a family run Cafe, Wine Bar and Restaurant, established in 2018 in the site formerly known as the Old London Inn. We are open 6 days a week over the summer period and offer a range of breakfast, brunch and lunch dishes throughout the day and by evening we transform the dining room into a warm and friendly yet relaxed place to dine.
How would you describe your ethos?
Our ethos is to provide a community first focussed venue, but at the same time we want to be one of the most exciting food venues in Ashburton, where everyone is welcome and customers can relax and tarry awhile whilst enjoying the pleasures of great food at an affordable price. It’s like joining a family.
You’ve both recently launched a range of natural wine?
Yes, within our small restaurant, we now offer, a range of up to 90 all natural wines available for purchase at our table or yours (meaning you can buy to takeaway). Again, the wines are all priced at very affordable pricing offering the customer a great choice and even better experience. We can pair wines with all of our meals, offer wine tasting and even have a sommelier onsite on busy evenings to talk to customers exclusively about our range of wine.
What is a natural wine?
This is a difficult one, but there is no real definition. To us and the people who supply us, Natural wine refers to a generalised movement among winemakers for production of “natural” wine without pesticides, chemicals and other additives. Believing that natural is best and everything should be nursed and grown without the need to force it through life. We help champion the best of small independent winemakers who have amazing products to share.
Where can I buy a bottle?
This one is easy, you can buy at our table, by dining in the restaurant, there is a selection available by the glass, carafe and extended range by the bottle. You can buy from the restaurant to take away and enjoy at your table, or buy online at www.coljan.co.uk/shop. If unsure you can also but wine tastings to come and sample some great wine and we offer a selection of charcuterie and great local cheeses to sample alongside.
Tell us more about the menu range?
Our menu is an eclectic mix. We try very hard to have a solid range of local produce and winder range from the West Country. We do have to bring some products in from further a field, to meet current customer demand, but we make these a small portion of the menu and the dish served. Our sample menus are available online at www.coljan.co.uk and then select cafe or restaurant to navigate to the right place.
What natural wine would you recommend for a crab dish, such as Mitch Tonks Singapore chilli Crab?
For this amazing dish, we would recommend this Austrian Natural Wine from ARNDORFER. This Exceptional little Gruner, fermented on its own yeasts and aged in a variety of formats including stainless steel and wood. Slightly cloudy colour with good concentration of yellow plum and greengage with some spicy-leesy grip at the end of the buttery palate. It would be the prefect accompaniment to crab with chilli.
Do I need to book a table?
By day we operate a walk in service so there is no need to book, we have busy times but we will always endeavour to feed those that turn up to Coljan. By evening, it is highly advisable. We take bookings via our website at www.coljan.co.uk.
How can I get in touch to find out more?