Wednesday, 27 January 2010
The Ocean Deck Inn, 50 High Street Sandown, Isle of Wight, PO36 8AE
We were in the Isle of Wight in December, and it was very very chilly. The ocean wind was blowing with a wintry mood, and as we hurried into The Ocean Deck Inn for lunch, I was so glad that the heating was working very well in the restaurant.
With a selection of restaurants all along the beach, it’s a tough one trying to choose one restaurant, purely based on nothing. However, someone had recommended this one to us, and the list of dishes served outside the restaurant gave us a little reassuring nod as we went into the restaurant.
Going into the restaurant.
There’s a nice, airy conservatory section at the front of the restaurant, excellent for letting the light in on a not so sunny day. Not many people sat there, so it must have been slightly cold perhaps.
We sat round the back of the restaurant, right outside the kitchen. It looked warm and cosy, and it was next to the bar, plus it was right next to the kitchen, so the food would get there quicker, or so the theory goes.
Big menus sometime make me slightly sceptical. For those of you who’re quite on the ball, you would have noticed that that’s why this blog has something about not another big menu something or another in the name. My justification behind this skepticism is the fact that with lots of dish choices, come lots of waste. This equals lots of money to the restaurant. Unless the restaurant is into serving frozen food disguised as fresh, or the owners are into wasting lots of money, I don’t see how a restaurant can afford to keep lots of fresh items on offer, if they don’t have the continuous inflow of customers.
Why am I going on about this? Because the menu here was quite big. It was divided into three parts, and each part was printed on both sides. Lots and lots of fish choices too.
Guess my theory was proven right when we went to make our order.
‘One BBQ chicken, please.’
‘We’re out of BBQ chicken. We have the roast one though.’
‘Two grilled trouts stuffed with prawns, please.’
‘We’re out of prawns, but we can do king prawns.’ (woo hoo!)
Veggie sausage and mustard mash £8.25
To give it credit where it’s due, this tasted nice enough. However, you could also say that a restaurant has to at least be expected to be able to serve up a decent meal of veggie sausages and mash, so maybe there’s not that much credit to be given here.
Grilled trout stuffed with prawns £12.50
That’s what the menu described it as, anyway. The prawns were kinda sitting side by side with the trout, or, not stuffed in the trout. Maybe it was because they were king prawns and so wouldn’t have fitted inside the trout. Not entirely sure how they were going to stuff the smaller-sized prawns, had they had any in stock, into the trout either.
That little comment aside, the fish was actually really fresh. The prawns were crunchy and sweet, and the fish was grilled almost to perfection. Couldn’t say too much about the potatoes other than the fact that they were cooked.
We waited about an hour for our meals. With 3 other tables in the restaurant, and lots of waiting staff just kinda waiting around at the bar, we had expected the food to be served up quite quick. I mean, how long does trout have to be cooked for anyway? When we asked the waitress where our food was, they said something about the trout taking longer to be cooked, so unless they were busy thawing that out, or catching it fresh from the sea, that doesn’t seem like a very good reason for the long wait at all.
Would I recommend this place? It’s a tough one, this. The food tasted fresh, but it was quite plain, nothing fancy here so if you like that, then you might want to try it out. The waiting time might put you off though. Take some nibbles with you, that might help keep you and your other diners amused during the wait.
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