pioneer crosbyThe angular and distinctive Pioneer building has anchored a Crosby corner of Liverpool Road for the last 70 or so years, but, in recent times, it’s had a much-needed jolt of life, thanks to the TLC and thoroughly decent food presented by its new owner, David Cairns and his team.

Now the landmark soft furnishings store is a bright, contemporary brasserie and bar offering modern European lunches, grills and salads, tapas and globe-spanning a la carte dishes.

But it’s the lunches which really hit the spot – and make Pioneer a perfect excuse to leave the city for a laid-back, leisurely hour or two.

Pioneer appointed Michael Wichmann – who’s worked at the Savoy – to oversee the initial menus, but now the busy brasserie’s enlisted the team from Marco Pierre White’s The Swan, in Aughton.

For Cairns, this is his first catering venture, after running a security company in Manchester.

So he opted for the easy life?

“Take if from me, it’s easier working with 300 doormen than three chefs,” he tells SevenStreets.

That said, there’s no doormen at Pioneer. No screaming plasmas, and no reheated microwaved ‘food service’ meals. And SevenStreets approves wholeheartedly.

We plumped for the home made burgers (£7.50), which probably don’t tax the chef’s skills too much. But we’re happy to report – they were  the best we’ve tasted in a long while. As were the chunky chips. There’s an assured and authentic selection of tapas, too. The Pan fried chorizo sausage served with blistered cherr y tomatoes, red onions and cider broth (£3.95) would give that other Tapas joint in Waterloo a run for its money.

Great, relaxed atmosphere, and the perfect excuse to leave the city this afternoon.

Thanks to SevenStreets reader, Chris Barker, for the tip-off.

Pioneer Bar and Brasserie
107 Liverpool Road
Tel: 0151 924 1665

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