Katy Hanley enjoys fresh fish and an amazing view at the Breakwater Bistro in Brixham
The last time I was in Brixham, I visited the fish market with its world-famous auction. When I was there this time, I had a chance to eat some of this superb produce at the great location of the Breakwater Bistro.
The waitresses and owners were enthusiastic in their greetings. Being steps away from a beach, there are, needless to say, amazing views over the sea and harbour. My first impressions of this venue were very good. It is the sort of place that customers could visit for an ice cream, a coffee or a full-blown three-course feast.
We sat inside, but there are plenty of tables on the two balconies, which would provide a fantastic spot on a blue-skied day. Inside, the large windows reveal the fish market, Torbay coastline, passing ships and pleasure boats.
The restaurant is pleasantly decorated, with several blackboards displaying the daily specials, fairy lights along the windows, a framed rugby shirt (a team sponsored by the Bistro), plus small wicker baskets of plastic toy lobsters and crabs!
I chose the crab pâté as a starter, but could have eaten this as a main. It was homemade with mainly brown crabmeat, chives and a little lemon zest and came with a crusty baguette and side salad. The crabmeat was sweet and the pâté well balanced. My partner had the fried whitebait; all was well cooked – crispy, golden and delicious, while the homemade tartare sauce contained a perfect balance of capers. We felt like we were on holiday.
My main course was hake cooked in homemade batter, served with golden chips and a choice of mushy peas, petits pois or side salad. My partner had the trio of shellfish, which was presented in a large lidded pan full of Exmouth mussels, four huge crevettes and four large crab claws. It was served with a crusty baguette – great for mopping up the seafood’s garlicky, buttery juices. To complement the dish, he had a glass of Sharpham Vineyard's white wine, whose herbaceous tones and acidity balanced the richness of the food.
The Bistro is open every day of the year and until 9pm on summer evenings. They allow dogs here.
On our way out we chatted to Lee Tyrell, the friendly owner, who is rightly proud of his regular following. We are certainly going to spread the word too.
Published 26 April 2014
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