NEW BAR HITS THE SPOT
The Cliff House in Barton on Sea has a newly extended bar area, if last Friday evening, and the packed seating area, is anything to go by it can't have opened too soon.
As a big gin fans Simon and I were keen to try The Cliff House own brand gin, aptly named Flip Flop gin after the co owner Steve, who it seems, is rarely out of his flip flops. The gin is distilled by Richard from The Dancing Cows Distillery in Lymington and is made using hand foraged plums from the New Forest. Originally made as a one off for the annual Gin and Beer Festival it proved so popular it is now stocked permanently behind the bar.
Incidentally, if you are interested in learning more about gin and the distillery process, tours can be booked on a Wednesday evening or a Saturday lunch time via www.dancingcows.co.uk
Not only can The Cliff House cater for those wanting a drink, they have a beautiful restaurant with panoramic views of the Solent and seven individually designed bedrooms available for those wanting to stay in the area.
We had booked for dinner in the restaurant, it has been thoughtfully laid out with plenty of room between tables and continues the coastal theme from the bar. The staff are very attentive and it wasn't long before we had decided on our food and placed an order.
The food was stunning as was the service, informative and casually attentive, perfect for the Ciff House's vibe.
They clearly have built a great front of house team and also a fine kitchen team. As always we chose the food we wanted to eat and taste, and we weren't dissapointed each dish was beatuifully presented, well thought out, and a real feast for the eye and taste buds.
Scallops and Pancetta
Sirlon Steak in a peppercorn sauce
Rump of Dorset Lamb
I went back a couple of days later to talk to the owners and appreciate the venue in the February sunshine. Hayley one of the owners told me she had lots of fun designing the bar area which understandable has a coastal feel.
We've been to the Cliff House numerous times over the last few years, and enjoyed sitting outside in the sunshine, watching the sunset, enjoyed the Gin festival, and even had to hold onto our drinks as a helicopter landed on the clifftop, but this particular Friday evening in February will live long in the memory, and we will back back in the very near future to do it all again.
Food and drink were complimentary, all photographs and opinions are my own.