Seafood restaurants in my view fall into three categories:-
- The bad ones of which there are way too many.
- The good but conventional ones like Chapmans in Canterbury, which are not quite so plentiful.
- The rare ones that have that special something that sets them apart.
I would put Eddie Gilberts in Ramsgate and The Sportsman in Whitstable into the third category for example along with The Waterside Restaurant in Eastbourne which on my third visit in an eight month period just did not disappoint.
The Waterside Restaurant is situated in a boutique hotel of the kind that goes a long way to revitalizing British Seaside resorts, every good resort should have one or better still half a dozen such places.
Our first visit to The Waterside was in the heart of winter and I guess the fact it was thriving then should have been the first clue to how special this place was. Something the AA recognized earlier this year by awarding it a second Rosette.
When we arrived it was nice to be welcomed back by the waitress who remembered us from our earlier visits. We had a good start – ordering a glass of Moet at a fraction of the price we would have paid in London.
The menu changes frequently enough to make it interesting. I started with the King Scallops Sweet Plate – The scallops are served with mustard brulee and cashew nut baklava, this is a dish I have had before and one I am pleased they keep on the menu. My companion ordered the crab and crayfish salad a new addition to the menu which was delicious. It took a while to choose my main course as I was torn between several of the dishes. l finally settled on the Sea Bream served very simply with potato and spinach salad – perfect. My companion had the Fillet of Plaice served with a divine crayfish risotto and scallops. The only disappointment of the evening was that they did not have the stunning Basil Ice cream we had on our last visit on their list of home made ices, but I still enjoyed the Toffee, Apple & Cinnamon and Banana & Mango ice creams that were on offer along with a nice glass of Moscatel.
We retired to the bar for cocktails. Where they serve a mixture of classic cocktails and boutique cocktails. I had an Aqua, one of the boutique cocktails containing Lycee and Melon liqueur, Vodka, Gin, Cointreau, Lime Juice and lemonade – very refreshing and a nice way to end a lovely evening.
This may have been my third visit to The Waterside but it certainly will not be my last. I don’t need the sunshine to draw me to Eastbourne when the town boasts a restaurant of this calibre, and it’s only an hour and a half away from London by train 😉
Marks out of 10