Matt and Cat\'s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide
Having just missed the ferry to Southampton by a whisker, Matt and Cat found themselves with a hour to kill in East Cowes. And...

Having just missed the ferry to Southampton by a whisker, Matt and Cat found themselves with a hour to kill in East Cowes. And it was lunchtime.

In its prime, East Cowes must have been a very busy place with the Columbine Works, Westlands, and Trinity House at full capacity. These days East Cowes is more than a little tired and is, statistically, a very deprived town.

Seabreeze Cafe, East Cowes

Seabreeze Cafe, East Cowes

However, a visit to the Seabreeze Café will dispel the myth that East Cowes is a miserable place. On entering the bright, clean establishment, Matt and Cat were greeted by the very friendly proprietor. As they were in a bit of a hurry, he was able to assure your reviewers that they would certainly be fed and watered in time to catch the next ferry.

Matt and Cat sat at a table by one of the vast picture windows (offering a ringside view of Somerfield) and scanned the menu. There is plenty of choice at the Seabreeze and, as the venue is also a takeaway, the menu proclaims mostly traditional café/chip shop favourites such as mouthwatering all-day breakfasts, sandwiches and hot meals including lasagne, burgers and fish and chips. There was even a Christmas menu and a specials board. However, as time was of the essence, M and C did not have time to give the menu their usual consideration; Matt chose cheeseburger with bacon and Cat selected one of the three all-day breakfast options. The lady at the counter was very accommodating and was happy for Cat to swap the breakfast’s sausage for fried mushrooms.

M and C had barely had time to glance around the welcoming interior of the restaurant with its many relaxed-looking punters before their food arrived. What speed of service! It was possibly the quickest delivery of all the establishments reviewed on this website.

Matt’s delicious juicy burger came in a huge, soft bap with a lean piece of bacon, plenty of cheese and salad and a generous portion of chips. The chips were not quite up to chip-shop standard but were certainly most palatable. Cat’s breakfast was equally generous; all items were in place – two meaty rashers of bacon, a fried egg, some small but delicious mushrooms, beans and a half tomato, presented on two rounds of hot buttered toast. Both meals were served with a tasty mug of steaming tea.

Fast food!

Fast food!

Whilst Matt and Cat tucked into their food, an elderly lady and gentleman came through the door of the café and were enthusiastically greeted by the proprietor, and with a kiss no less! With a couple of estate agent types, an old man and some young couples, all East Cowes life visited the café during the brief time your reviewers were there.

M and C had to rush off and catch their ferry but certainly enjoyed their visit to what seems like the hub of the town. Simple good food, quickly served, in a remarkably cheery atmosphere – just what was required.

  • Jean says:

    C’mon guys please update your comment about East Cowes. It is now positively up and coming!
    Ps Seabreeze is still great too.

  • PAUL MULLERY says:

    As Tom Jones would say ” it’ snot unusual!”

  • da yw wyth says:

    With M&C’s recommendation ringing in my ears went in here with high hopes. Sure enough all looked promising, with delicious bakery items, lovely coffee, and – fatastically – no salad portion unless you made a point of asking for one!

    The downfall? The proprieters were quite happy to have a group with streaming colds sitting right in the centre of the café, pefectly placed to spread their germs to everyone else, and making no attempt to shield their spectacularly projectile sneezing! A definite minus in my book, which will prevent any future visit…

  • Neil W says:

    We went to Seabreeze in East Cowes for what we thought be quite a nice pre-Christmas meal. It was a lot more than ‘quite nice’. The staff had gone to a great deal of trouble to make our table festive, and service was so friendly and warm. The food was unbelievable at 3 courses under £13.00 per head, including a complimentary glass each of house wine. The starter alone would have been worth the price of the meal – and the (5!!) vegetables were simply superb, and very plentiful, cooked al dente as we like them. So far did the meal exceed our expectations (although we like this eatery anyway) that we feel the need to spread the word! Needless to say, we left a hefty tip. We didn’t know last year that they were offering this pre-Christmas treat, but we shall certainly make a point of booking again next year. Just to note: they do like advance notice and have a little form for the purpose – or I expect you could ring and book.

  • June says:

    In view of the comments from M&C we visited the Seabreeze on our way for a stay at Sandown. I must say that we all had the breakfast which was lovely. The staff were very accomodating with a few adjustments being made to our order. We did not have time to visit on our return journey but will be sure to visit on our next trip.

  • We followed up your recommendation last week and the fish and chips were indeed ‘historic’. Forget the ludicrously expensive prices at Osborne and come down here instead.

  • Simon Walker says:

    Dear M & C, your comments about Seabreeze Cafe much appreciated. It’s a gem of a place. The cod and chips are, as Michael Winner would say “historic”.
    The rest of the food is to an excellent standard
    and the service superb.
    Yours Sincerely
    Simon Walker

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