Matt and Cat\'s Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide
Stripped, Ventnor
Have you ever worked for a big organisation? Not a rapidly-expanding kick-started hipster laser razor company, but one of those ancient creaky institutions, like the government or Royal Family. Where, over the decades, layers of policy, ceremony and administration have been added like skin round an onion, until nobody... Read more
No 64, Ryde
There was a time when each cafe sold us the same thing, and we had to put up with it. Brutally potent tea, camp coffee, dry sandwiches and an ashtray on every table were universally understood and expected. But oh, how things have changed. On the Island a few... Read more
Blacksmith’s, Carisbrooke
Is pub grub an actual genre of food? It probably is. Leave aside the rather chummy and dated feel of the word ‘grub’, and the conveniently rhyming description gives a clear expectation to the prospective diner. Sizeable portions of hot food, usually a focus on meat and chips, and... Read more
Smoking Lobster
You come to the Isle of Wight, you want seafood. You’d think there’d be no problem with that, really. After all, we are surrounded by the stuff. Londoners arriving at their cosy cottages by the sea reasonably expect crustaceans to be marching up from the beaches and throwing themselves... 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 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
Island Bakers, Newport
If you’re as old as us, you’ll remember the futuristic delight of white sliced bread. Mother’s Pride was a staple ingredient at Cat’s childhood tea table, spread with a layer of margarine. Although seventies dinner party food porn now occupies a specialist corner of the overcrowded food blogging market,... Read more
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
Waverley Inn, Carisbrooke
Throughout England the allure of Wetherspoons is quite irresistible. And it’s easy to see why. The budget pub chain has a reputation for its sympathetic treatment of historic town centre buildings – as we discovered for ourselves in Harrogate. And, of course, it’s cheap as chips. Regardless of its... Read more
Chocolate Apothecary, Ryde
In October, chocolate chainstore Thornton’s announced that it was closing its last branch on the Isle of Wight. When we heard the news our minds once again turned to what the Island has rather than has not. As one by one the national stores withdraw their branches, local independent... Read more