• Quality — ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Price — 💸💸💸
  • Contact@fancettsbistro
  • LocationMill Road, Cambridge

Fancett’s is a relaxed, cozy, family-style restaurant on Mill Road that serves a variety of seasonal European dishes.

Having made many previous trips to Mill Road, we were surprised to learn of this restaurant’s existence. Its location is prime, sitting just shy of the railway bridge, but is so gracefully tucked away into the hustle and bustle of Mill Road. Its inconspicuous dark green storefront lettering and the bistro-inspired portière lends it a certain air of mystery too. We were drawn to it after looking at the Michelin Guide’s listings for Cambridge and were pleased to discover it received a mention after only a year of opening. Further investigation revealed that Fancett’s is family-run and that the menu is rotated weekly, two very promising signs in Cambridge’s chain-dominated restaurant landscape.

Our choices:

Since this was our celebratory end-of-term dinner, we decided to be generous with our selection of dishes. As always, we shared them family-style to both complement the atmosphere of the restaurant and allow us to cover more of the menu.

  • Crisp tartlet of cured chalk stream trout, blood orange, fennel & green peppercorn mayo
  • Homemade focaccia bread

Our hungry eyes were immediately drawn to the main dishes, and once these were decided, the logical option was then to choose a fish starter. The tartlet was fresh, light and we were delighted by how well it worked with the unusual combination of flavors in the mayonnaise. The bread, which we liberally dipped in olive oil, was a great soft entry to the meal as we took our first sips of the wine. The earthy sourdough aftertaste did not disappoint.

Did you know?
Fancett's opened in 2021 and in its first year gained a mention in the Michelin Guide for Cambridge. What an accomplishment and defintely well-deserved!
  • “Navarin’ of slow cooked lamb shoulder, turnips, Jersey royals, chantenay carrots & minted salsa verde
  • Gratinated parmesan gnocchi, bechamel sauce, rainbow chard, mushroom & spring white truffle

What an adventure this was! With each forking of the lamb shoulder, we grew more and more fond of it. Tender, soft and beautifully plated, its dark brown roast and buttery-smooth texture was indicative of a dish that was carefully thought through beforehand. The combination with the wine was nearly heavenly and all elements of the dish just worked together flawlessly. Interleaved with tastings of the lamb, we also tried the gnocchi. These were unusually large in size, confirming our suspicions that they were indeed homemade, and the selection of earthy flavors (the truffle, mushroom, and chard) matched the starchy potato gnocchi subtly, but impeccably well. The extra step the chef took by gratinating instead of simply grating the parmesan on top, impressed us.

  • 18-month aged Comté, spiced pear chutney & Miller’s Damsel crackers

To cut through the richness of the main dishes, we opted for a cheese course and a glass each of sweet French Sauternes wine. It worked great as the final course and complemented our previous choices expertly.

Towards the end of the meal, we had a lovely exchange with the Greek waiter, who explained to us how they constantly rotate both the wine and food menu, and even recommended a few Greek restaurants in Cambridge that he found particularly authentic. Food and drink are inherently meant to be shared with others, and conversing with the restaurant staff is, for us, a key element of the experience.

To pair with the food, especially with the lamb shoulder, our local wine sommelier Álvaro chose a lovely, slightly oaked Côtes du Rhône red wine with an intense fruity taste in the mouth and nose.

Review written while listening to the Ratatouille Main Theme song.

Review written by Matias Silva.


Visited Mar 17, 2022