I recently took up the opportunity to have a meal at one of Winchester's finest restaurants, and the menu has stood the test of time.

We were invited on Wednesday, March 27 for a three-course meal, accompanied by a few cocktails of course, to try the new 1917 menu.

The Ivy is inviting customers to step back in time to 1917 - the year it made its debut in the heart of the West End. To celebrate, it is offering customers an all-day set menu costing £19.17 to unlock a 'time capsule of flavours' and pay homage to the dishes that started it all.

I rallied a few friends to join me for the evening, and we headed there excited - and hungry.

I had never been to an Ivy restaurant before, but first impressions go a long way, with my first thought being 'wow'.

The interior of the building is lovely, with a good-sized bar surrounded by stools. Despite the full, busy restaurant, the layout gives diners an element of privacy at their table. A lot of restaurants are more concerned about cramming customers inside, but that is not at all the experience at The Ivy.

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The walls are filled with artwork of different shapes and colours, creating a nice relaxed environment, perfect for a family meal, catching up with friends, a first date - the lot!

The 1917 menu has a good range of all three courses, as well as options to share, and sides to add.

I'm not a fussy eater and wanted to hear the recommendations from our waiter Henry.

Hampshire Chronicle: Linguine main Linguine main (Image: Newsquest)

Henry's suggestions weren't just top-notch, they were excellent, showing a great level of knowledge and detail of the menu.

Although a massive squid lover, he suggested I try the crispy chicken bang bang salad as, in his own words, 'it bangs.' So, I crossed off the squid and went for the suggestion. My friends got the squid, and a prawn cocktail starter for themselves.

I think Henry might have had a word for me, as when the starters came out, we received an extra portion of squid! Very thankful for the gesture, we tucked in and demolished the lot. The squid was beautifully cooked, with the sauce having a hint of chilli mixed in, which gave it a beautiful kick.

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Although the squid was great, nothing could prepare me for the crispy chicken bang bang. It was heavenly. The crispy chicken gave an element of heat and flavour, which was made refreshing by the accompanying salad.

Safe to say after an impressive starter, we were well and truly looking forward to the main. I chose a crab and queen scallop nero linguine, another of Henry's recommendations, and again, I was blown away.

The portion size was fantastic, and the meal had been cooked to perfection. I tucked in, making sure to get everything on the fork as I began working my way through the meal.

Hampshire Chronicle: Photos from a recent review of The Ivy, Winchester

I washed down mouthfuls of food with two of the drinks from the 1917 gin menu - a honey and peach gimlet and a cygnet strawberry smash.

The drinks were lovely too, although the strawberry smash was not my favourite. It tasted a bit like a mojito, which is not one of my personal favourites. That said, the honey and peach gimlet was right up my street. Fruity and smooth, what more could you ask for!

We finished our mains as live music began playing in the restaurant, with a cellist, saxophonist and keyboard player taking to the floor. They played jazzy, soothing sounds of classic songs and artists like Nat King Cole.

Jazz nights are a regular occurrence and happen on the last Wednesday of every month.

After a filling two starters and a huge pasta main, I didn't have much room to squeeze in a pudding, which was a shame, as I am a big fan of both a creme brulee and a sponge, two of the three dessert options on the 1917 menu. 

That said, I decided to be good and had a selection of frozen berries with yoghurt sorbet and white chocolate sauce (alright, maybe not so good) which was a nice way to end the meal. 

I had enjoyed the food so much, and the fruit was a nice sweet bite to finish off what had been a lovely evening.

Overall, I would highly recommend The Ivy in Winchester. The food was delectable, the atmosphere lovely, and the service and standards impeccable. 

I think at The Ivy, there's not much room to improve.