Dell Cafe, Seaview
For a county surrounded by water there are surprisingly few beach-side eateries on the Isle of Wight. Those venues lucky enough to be within a nostril’s length of salty air generally capitalise on their sea view – and why wouldn’t they? A refreshing cool beverage on a sunny terrace... Read more
Deep Blue, Southsea
Southsea’s South Parade Pier, magnificently wrecked by fire during the filming of Tommy, was a regular haunt of Cat’s. Every Monday night in the mid-1980s, the Battle of the Bands would take place; Cat had many friends who performed on the stage at the pier’s Gaiety Show Bar. She... Read more
Hewitt’s, Newport
Depending on your outlook, Newport is either an example of the worst of developers’ unsympathetic treatment of the Island’s county town, or a primarily intact mediaeval settlement with attractive historic buildings radiating from a glorious minster. In the past, Matt has tended to look upon the hideousness of the... Read more
Taverners, Godshill
In the days when holidaymakers flooded to the Island in their droves during the same two weeks in August there were some must-sees on the tourist itinerary: The Needles, Carisbrooke Castle and a thatched cottage. Shanklin Old Village probably topped the straw-roof charts, closely followed by equally picturesque Winkle... Read more
The Old Fort, Seaview
The Old Fort is positioned to take advantage of one of the finest dining vistas on the Island, perhaps only rivalled by the Little Gloster and Ventnor’s Spyglass. On those balmy summer Seaview nights when the sea breeze allows it, you can sit right on the seawall and stare in... Read more
Wonky Cafe
As exciting as the Needles is with its internationally famous chalk stacks, geologist-stimulating coloured cliffs and the thrill-seekers’ chairlift; you can get a bunch of similar experiences at the eastern end of the Isle of Wight. OK, there aren’t any chalky pinnacles stretching out towards Selsey, but there is... Read more
Ozze’s Plaice, Newport
The best fish and chips on the Island? Well, that’s a crown that’s keenly fought for; and also a question we get asked a lot. Alas we’re unlikely ever to gain a definitive answer, but we keep on trying. It’s a difficult thing to find the acme of the... Read more
The Sloop Stonehouse Pizza & Carvery, Wootton Bridge
Remember the golden days of the theatrical farce? Comedies of embarrassment: meek hen-pecked husbands, saucy secretaries and the impromptu arrival of a vicar as the ante of chaos was well and truly upped. This genre of situation comedy was clearly fictional. No real life irritation could be compounded to... Read more
Beach Cafe, Sandown
We’ve all seen photos of the halcyon days Isle of Wight tourism. Esplanades filled with promenading Edwardians; Ryde Pier swarming with excited 1950s families; beaches packed with sun-worshippers in the seventies. It’s possible in these uncertain times that we might see a return to those visitor numbers, as people... Read more
The Brasserie, Newport
We took the window seat in the Brasserie’s splendid first floor dining room. It was easy to feel the weight of years in this place as the evening light streamed across the spacious table. A cornerstone of St Thomas’ Square; the ancient Wheatsheaf Inn must have seen so many... Read more