Heima, Brading
“Is chef Max trying to outdo Robert Thompson?” reflected one of our dining companions in amazement during our dinner at Brading’s newest restaurant, the Nordic-influenced Heima. Well, no, he isn’t. As the evening went on it became clear that Heima has very much a style and context all of... Read more
Prego, East Cowes
Much is said these days of gentrification; the process by which overlooked and undervalued areas are upgraded, often by incomers. This has long been going on on the mainland and beyond. Unfashionable boroughs of London and even New York have incrementally been improved by the rising tide of hipsters,... Read more
The Captain’s Table, Ryde
Sometimes the thing you fancy is a decent fry-up, and nothing else will do. Well, if you’re Matt that is. Cat can normally make do with some eggs and mushrooms on toast, so long as there’s some coffee involved too. And in search of these things we found ourselves... Read more
Quay Arts Cafe, Newport
In the olden times, arts funding was as significant as healthcare. You could almost argue that both services were two sides of the same coin; the nation’s physical well-being enriched by cultural stimulation. However these days, like so many other laudable public services, if we like having an arts... Read more
Jolliffes of Cowes
Much is being trumpeted at the moment about the government’s idea of stopping central funding for public services through the ‘liberation’ of selected bits of England from the shackles of Westminster control. This is, on the surface, potentially an appealing prospect. There’s a local Solent Devolution Deal including the... Read more
Seaview Bistro
Sometimes, you pass a stranger in the street and do a double take. “Was that… it couldn’t be. Or is it? It is!” The stranger turns out to be someone you once knew, and underneath the new hairstyle, new spouse, new wrinkles or whatever, it’s the same old friend.... Read more
Archive: Waxworks, Brading
Archive review: The Waxworks has now closed Where could you have found George Bernard Shaw on his trusty tricycle, Queen Victoria forever tapping her toe and an angelic cat with wings? No, not Alfred Lord Tennyson’s Freshwater salon, but Osborne-Smith’s waxworks in Brading. The candy-coloured museum was quite literally... Read more
Morgan’s, Shanklin
We’ve noticed a quiet phenomenon on the Isle of Wight. While street food hucksters, single-issue menus and bourbon boutiques pop up (and sometimes down again) other venues go about their business without fanfare or fashion. Each town has one or two restaurants that seem to have extraordinary staying power and ongoing... Read more
Bellamy’s
Cuisine. A foreign word that implies foreign cooking. As the world seemingly shrinks and we all become ‘travellers’ rather than holidaymakers, our experience of other cultures becomes part of our daily vocabulary. We enjoy spicy Mexican tacos and enthuse about Italian salami, we nibble at sushi even if our... Read more
Royal Esplanade Hotel, Ryde
It’s a part of our lives that we all come to understand. The beloved friend or family member is taken ill, maybe rallies a few times, but over time begins to weaken, fade, and eventually is laid to rest. So it is with big seaside hotels. In the middle... Read more