A number of Chinese restaurants and cafés that serve authentic Chinese food have popped up in Portsmouth over the last few years. Most restaurants will now have a separate Chinese menu in addition to the standard menu. Golden Bowl is a café / takeaway towards the northern end of Fawcett Road that has a menu of Hong Kong Cantonese food alongside more Westernised fare. This place is small (around 25 covers) and no frills and is reminiscent of a café in Hong Kong – there is a ceiling fan and behind the counter, you’ll see a curtain that cordons off the kitchen and a TV playing Chinese channels. Continue reading →
We stumbled across what appeared to be a pop up shop called Ammolite Cafe, tucked away off a road at the top of Portsmouth’s Commercial Road. Ammolite is a semi precious gem stone mined in the Rocky Mountains in the US and Canada. Much to my surprise, rather than a gem stone and coffee shop, Ammolite Cafe turned out to be a Malaysian café. The menu was split into noodle dishes, rice dishes, side orders and dim sum. There was also a selection of East Asian drinks and an impressive cake counter of East Asian inspired cakes. To top it off, they sold New Forest ice cream.Continue reading →
January. The excesses of the Christmas season are now memories and thoughts turn to detoxing and embracing healthier life choices. Dry January and the Dryathlon are two charity initiatives where people give up alcohol for the month of January. Veganuary is a campaign to encourage people to become vegan in January while also providing advice and information to help those who wish to transition to a vegan lifestyle. To mark Veganuary, I decided to write about a delightful and independent vegan wholefood shop in Portsmouth which also happens to have a takeaway counter and juice bar, Wild Thyme Wholefoods. Continue reading →
The Italian Bar and Grill is housed in an elegant listed building on Great Southsea Street and is an independent Italian-American restaurant. The building is steeped in local history and I couldn’t resist including a few notes on this at the end of this post for anyone interested. We have visited The Italian Bar regularly and it is one of our favourite places. The menu is big and features typical Italian-American classic such as creamy pastas and various takes on pepperoni pizza, as well as burgers, salads and grills. They also do Sunday roasts. The food is cooked to order which has meant that understandably, we have had to wait for our food during busy times. Continue reading →
I love artisan coffee shops and in the age of Starbucks, Costa and Nero, it is heartening to see independent shops opening. Southsea Coffee Co opened just over two years ago in Southsea in Portsmouth and serves coffee roasted by hasbean. There are espresso based drinks (latte, cappuccino etc) and hand poured coffee (this changes regularly). They can serve you a long black, a coffee I got to love in Australia and one I have rarely seen on offer in the UK. They also serve a selection of special blend teas and herbal teas, hot chocolate and smoothies. In the Summer, there are iced coffees and teas. There is a beverage for everyone!
Steki Taverna is a charming family run Greek taverna that has been established in Southsea in Portsmouth since 1998. The decor is inviting and similar to the tavernas you see in Greece – terracotta tiled floor, wooden tables and beams. They opened a second branch in Brighton in 2006.
Over the years, we must have sampled most items on the menu: as with most restaurants, some dishes are better than others and we are always drawn back to our favourites. There are a good number of meat, seafood and vegetarian choices. This is a good place for vegetarians – most of the hot and cold starters are suitable for vegetarians. Menu items include the usual favourites such as humous, moussaka, Greek salad and baklava. They do not serve one of my favourite Greek dishes sadly, spanakopita, but there plenty of other items to choose from. Continue reading →
UPDATE 22nd August 2015: Kitsch N D’Or has closed.
The wonderfully named Kitsch N D’oris a very charming French restaurant in Southsea that has been a firm favourite of mine over the years. You will find it tucked away in a quiet residential street which is lined with a mixture of period houses and modern builds. The restaurant has an attractive blue and white shop front. Inside, you will find a homely and relaxed atmosphere, with wooden tables and French signs and pictures on the wall. The food is described as ‘provincial French’ and the menu changes regularly. Continue reading →