I was recently invited to review Nova Scotia on the Liverpool Waterfront and I was delighted to accept. Nova Scotia is an independent bar & eatery that serves breakfasts, small plates, lunches, main meals and desserts. Dishes include burgers, Dockside hotdogs, full English breakfasts, sandwiches, salads and traditional UK meals like Scouse and fish and chips. For drinks, Nova Scotia offers Signature Serves including Sea Brow Iced Tea, Jamaica Street, NS Old Fashioned and French Martini cocktails. They do serve mocktails too, which was very pleasing as I don't really drink alcohol. There is a selection of beers and wines too, so there is something for everyone. The menu includes veggie and vegan options, as well as clearly indicating allergens including eggs, dairy, gluten, mustard, nuts, fish, soya and more. This is great as it makes it nice and easy to see what is suitable. They are open 9am to 9pm 7 days a week so they should be open at a time suitable for everyone.

I knew I wanted a mocktail as soon as I was told they could make one and it had raspberry purée, lemon and pineapple in it, topped with a strawberry and a piece of orange. Andy chose an ice-cold San Miguel which was lovely to have on a warm but rainy summer's day. He said it was a nice refreshing beer to accompany the meal. There is a good selection of drinks at the bar so there should be one for everyone.

To start, we had the Halloumi Popcorn (£7, Vegetarian), which were beer battered halloumi nuggets which came with a roasted red pepper mayo. There was a fair amount of these given they were only a small plate item and were so light and delicious. The batter was crispy and the halloumi was soft and cooked perfectly, with the mayo pairing well to give a nice additional flavour. We also had the Salt N Pepper Fries (£5, Vegan) which was a plate full of homemade fries with salt n pepper seasoning, fried onions and red peppers throughout and topped with red chillies and salad onions. I was so impressed with these fries, so much so I would say they are one of the best we've ever had. If they ever got in a plant-based 'chicken' burger they would be so perfect together. Salt and pepper seasoning is most definitely one of my favourite flavours and these fries are perfect. 

For our main meals, they asked if we would like them brought over not long after we had started our small plates, which we said yes to which was kind of them. I had the Mauretania (£12, Vegan if you choose the plant-based hotdog), which had salt n pepper seasoning, onions and peppers. I'm not normally one to choose hot dogs, but the salt n pepper flavour swayed me and I really enjoyed it. Andy had the Marco Polo (£14, Vegetarian), which is a Moving Mountains burger topped with cheese, house burger sauce and beer battered onion rings. This was a really tasty burger, and the onion rings worked well and gave a little added crunch and flavour. Both meals came with a generous portion of the Nova Scotia seasoned fries which were homemade skin-on fries and were the right mixture of crispy and soft.

Nova Scotia is located in the Mann Island building, right next to the World Museum and the Three Graces right on the waterfront. At the end of the 19th Century, the Mann Island area was actually a shanty-town called Nova Scotia and the dock served Canada and the lumber trade. It twinned with Nova Scotia in Canada, and there is also a Liverpool in Canada along with a Mersey River and a Mann Island over there too. Check out the video at the bottom of the post that showcases the creation of a composite 19th Century map of Liverpool’s waterfront and city centre, focused on the Nova Scotia dockland area.

The restaurant had a great atmosphere, with lots of plants and beautiful green and white tiles. It has a nice casual feel but in the best way possible. It's perfect to have a catch-up with friends and family, or a few drinks outside when it's sunny. It was open and airy and had a good view out to the Liverpool Museum and docks area. They have a selection of seating, including raised stools, booths and standard chairs. There is a small curb outside of the restaurant but after this, the restaurant is step-free (apart from a couple of small steps to the regular toilets) although there is an accessible disabled toilet down a small ramp as well. There is space within the restaurant to use a wheelchair where you could wheel up to a table.

The only criticism I have for the menu, is that it would be great if Nova Scotia could add the option to upgrade your Seasoned Fries to Salt N Pepper Fries with your meal, potentially for an extra few pounds. If an upgrade to the fries was available, I highly recommend getting the Salt N Pepper Fries with a main, but if you really want to try them you could get a few small plates to share as the Salt N Pepper Fries easily serves two people. The staff were really friendly and helpful and contributed to a really enjoyable and relaxing visit. I'm definitely going to be returning at some point soon and would recommend making a visit if you enjoy great food and drinks.

Post contains a press meal