Top Foodie Picks of the Month

Cheer yourself up by getting out and enjoying a new foodie experience on the Isle of Wight this New Year with this selection of great eateries. Some are new, so let us know what your think of them in the comments section.

Dinner

Thompsons is still the best restaurant on the Island according to all reports, and Robert Thompson continues to work his magic with his talented team. Sit downstairs and watch your food being created, or upstairs beneath the rafters. Robert Thompson was the youngest person to achieve a Michelin star, putting the Isle of Wight on the foodie map in the process, and his food and the service is sublime. Try the eight course tasting menu with friends. 

Getting rave reviews since opening last summer, the Smoking Lobster on Ventnor seafront is an Asian fusion seafood and steak eaterie brought to you by the same young team as Tramezzini on Ventnor High Street. Watch the chefs prepare your meal at the rear of this light white restaurant, with views over the sea. The sharing seafood platter with Asian twist is very popular.

Head chef Liam Howes at the Seaview Hotel has achieved a Michelin Bib Gourmand for the past two years for his creative, affordable food, and the set menus he presents are a triumph, as are the a la carte options. There’s a focus on fish and seafood, but with a good selection of meat and veggie options. Eat your beautifully presented and delicious dishes in the stylish restaurant or the Pump Room bar at the front of the hotel.

Lunch

So quirky it hurts, That 60s Place in Cowes has a bar in a VDub campervan and moulded ‘face’ seats straight out of a sixties happening. With pop and film memorabilia from the decade on the walls, there’s a Dalek under the stairs and you walk through Dr Who’s tardis to get to the loo. Food has an American/Mexican theme and the steaks and the Rosti with an egg on the top gets good reviews.

The Bandstand on Sandown seafront has been lovingly restored and given an upstairs glass encased seating area, which has fabulous views of the rolling sea. Not surprisingly the food has a fishy theme with several variations of fish and chips, including their chunky home made fish fingers, plus there are burgers, salads, sandwiches, wraps and veggie options.

La Cucina in Yarmouth is a brand new Mediterranean and traditional British restaurant that has opened up in the former Forresters Hall above the art gallery on the High Street. With beautiful wooden vaulted ceiling, there’s one table in the rafters on a high balcony. Specialising in Italian and Greek food, the chef’s specialities are their fish stew and their slow cooked Keftiko Lamb and they also offer Sunday roasts.

Coffee, Tea or Snack

Caffé Isola has recently moved to larger premises on the corner of Newport’s Upper St James’s Street and Chapel Street and this huge yellow building has now become ‘the’ place to meet in the island’s capital town. One of the few locally owned ‘artisan’ cafes in Newport, Café Isola also makes and sells their own Island Roasted Coffee and sell speciality teas from Tea Pigs and Novus.

Off the Rails is great for lunch or dinner, but it’s also a great place to drop into for a coffee whilst you’re walking along the former railway line that passes it. Once Yarmouth station, you can take your tea on the former platform on a sunny day and look out over the picturesque marshes with their resident wildfowl.

It’s vintage and it’s amazing – at Lady Scarletts Tea Parlour you are transported back to the days of WWII and the loo is an air raid shelter! This cosy little café on Ventnor seafront is a real find and you can even have marmite on toast. We love Lady Scarletts’ honey and lavender cake and tea in their vintage china, but only after a bracing walk on Ventnor Beach of course.

 

Jo Macaulay

30 December 2017

By Jo Macaulay in Articles

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