WHILE the unseasonal August weather might be putting a dampener on the last few weeks of summer, Stockton Heath high street offers a slice of the Mediterranean at The Olive Tree Brasserie.

Only opening in March last year, owner Dean Wilson transformed the former Lloyds Bank on London Road into a Greek and Mediterranean eatery.

With sites in Lytham, Preston and Chester, the Stockton Heath restaurant is the fourth site offering Greek inspired dishes in a ‘industrial chic’ setting.

This is my third time visiting The Olive Tree; I have been midweek for dinner, a Thursday lunchtime and now on a Friday evening.

While midweek was quieter, people flocked to the spacious restaurant on Friday, being a pleasant change from the usual chain restaurants.

Although there was a steady flow of customers, a mellow ambiance remained throughout the evening with a talented musician providing live music.

To start, my mum and I shared a plate of falafel and houmous with some Greek garlic bread,

As a falafel fanatic, I had high expectations and the starter did not disappoint.

Warrington Guardian: The falafel starter The falafel starter

They were tasty and not too filling while the houmous was light and creamy.

The garlic bread was slightly overdone and could have done with more garlic but it was still a good choice as an appetiser.

After previously trying the Olive Tree burger and the steak, I decided to opt for a vegetarian dish this time and the feta and spinach risotto stood out.

The traditional and simple Greek dish is known as Spanakorizo and while the portion size seemed a lot smaller than my mum’s giant mound of rice and chicken, I was soon reminded of just how filling a perfectly creamy risotto can be.

Warrington Guardian: The chicken kebab and herb rice and spinach and feta risotto The chicken kebab and herb rice and spinach and feta risotto

With eyes clearly bigger than my belly, I just about managed to finish the dish which was exquisite.

My mum chose the popular chicken kebab dish which is served with either rice or chips.

Despite me trying to convince her to pick the seasoned fries – a must-try at The Olive Tree – she went for the healthier herb rice.

The chicken breast is marinated in paprika, oregano and Greek olive oil and is served with a salad and tzatziki.

It is a big dish, filling and delicious, but I stand by my call for fries over rice.

We each had a glass of wine, the Merlot was smooth and reasonably price and my mum enjoyed her Pinot Grigio.

The dessert menu is inviting, offering everything from baklava to a vegan Belgian chocolate and raspberry torte.

Warrington Guardian: The white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake The white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake

I chose the white chocolate and raspberry cheesecake and my mum’s sweet tooth could not resist the doughnuts with white chocolate dip.

The cheesecake is a very generous portion and tasted delicious.

My mum said the doughnuts could have done with a ‘little more sugar’ and while they were heavy, the white chocolate sauce was a sweet delight.

Warrington Guardian: Doughnut dessert with white chocolate dipDoughnut dessert with white chocolate dip

Staff were friendly and attentive throughout and while you can sometimes expect to wait a little while for food, new chef Simon Brooks instils care and attention into each dish with outstanding presentation.

A Prix Fixe menu offers two courses for £15.95 and three for £17.95 all day between Sunday and Thursday and until 6.30pm on Friday and Saturday, making the dining experience great value for money.

With weekday deals including two-for-one cocktails and kebabs, it is hard not to find an excuse to visit.