Katy Hanley enjoys a relaxed vibe and the freshest seafood here
22 August 2016
We enjoyed a really pleasant meal at this Brixham restaurant, with the evening sun streaming in through the large windows. There is a fish and chip takeaway here, too, but the Bistro was very busy – and with good reason.
I must first mention the waiting staff: the place ran like a well-oiled machine. We had a friendly welcome and nothing seemed to be too much trouble. There was a happy atmosphere and it achieved a good balance of formal/informal – somewhere I felt very comfortable.
The restaurant is owned by one of the local fish companies, Roberts Fisheries, so you cannot get fresher fish and seafood than this. Alongside an appealing menu, there’s a specials board – not the usual blackboard but a screen visible to the whole restaurant. The floor is interesting, too: it appears to be made of inlaid pebbles, a reminder that we are literally a stone’s throw from the water’s edge.
My husband had the scallops from the main menu, followed by the hake special. He described the four scallops as sweet and delicious, and the garlic, buttery sauce was complementary, and didn’t overpower. They were served in their shells alongside some crusty bread to mop up the juices.
The hake was cooked simply, perfectly seasoned, served with mussels, a rich creamy sauce and chips. He accompanied this with a New Zealand ‘Green Lip’ Sauvignon Blanc (aptly named after mussels). This was preceded by a pint of local Bays Gold, described as being a ‘cross between a lager and an ale’.
I had the fish goujons (gurnard and monkfish) with a salad to start, then dressed crab and twice-cooked chips. The starter’s tempura batter was light and tasty, and I also enjoyed the combination of the two fish, as it enabled me to compare the taste. The twice-cooked chips were superb.
Dessert-wise, the chocolate fondant was pleasingly runny in the middle, with the bitterness of the chocolate offset by the creamy sweetness of the vanilla ice cream. My mango parfait was layered and circular, topped by a chocolate swirl that satisfied my desire for something chocolatey!
The live music playing (it was a Friday evening) was a solo act – the guitarist/singer giving us some old classics and other more modern songs. This made it feel like a proper ‘night out’: late-evening sun, good local fish and some well-played music. A winning combination.
This is the place to come for a relaxed vibe and some very fresh fish and seafood.
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