Saturday 21st September was quite a day to remember…and an eating mission of a lifetime.
The event was an epic restaurant crawl for England’s Seafood FEAST in aid of The Fishermans Mission, to kick off two weeks of seafood celebrations. During England’s Seafood FEAST, which runs until 6th October, various restaurants in the English Riviera are putting on set menus, special offers and event to celebrate our seafood coast.
The challenge? To visit 7 restaurants, for 7 dishes in 7 hours! We were delighted to be invited to join in – challenge accepted!
Torquay was the location for this challenge, and what a great setting it was. With plenty of independent restaurants side by side, and most with sea views, we ate and drank our way through some of Devon’s finest food and drink produce along with 18 other local guests.
A restaurant with upstairs boutique-sized wine bar, sash windows overlooking the bay, we nibbled on tasty crab bon bons, and sweet white crab meat, two ways on toasted croutons. With a rich lemony colour, the citrusy Lyme Bay sparkling went perfectly with the cracking crustacean.
2nd in line and just next door, we all eagerly piled into Michelin starred The Elephant Restaurant by Simon Hulstone for Brixham scallops, roasted onion, Rusty Pig pancetta and sweetheart cabbage, served with a Salcombe Gin and Fever Tree tonic.
Incredibly plump scallops on a bed of greens, surrounded by foam reminiscent of the sea, and topped with super thin cured meat. A refreshing glass of gin was in hand to add to our enjoyment.
We were spoilt with more plump shellfish! Muscly molluscs, a dreamy creamy sauce and bread for dipping! The cider was a nice drink to cut through this indulgent bowl of shellfish.
No 4, and just over halfway, we were led upstairs to the garden bar at Twenty1Lounge where we were blown away by Mackerel bruschetta. Flame smoked mackerel, heritage tomatoes, mango, pomegranate, pickled shallots, sesame seeds and balsamic glaze, served with Sea Arch non-alcoholic gin & Fever Tree tonic.
A very cool vibe, with even cooler food but thankfully it wasn’t all smoke and mirrors. Expertly cooked mackerel fillets on a bed of lip smacking salad and bruschetta. The sea arch alcohol-free gin was really good and was dressed with mint leaves, cucumber and lime – refreshing and as good as an alcoholic gin – you wouldn’t know the difference, and ensured we could walk back down the stairs without mishap.
Gorgeous chunks of lobster, slaw laced with fresh apple and a nice crunch from the skinny fries, the lager was a great partner for this relaxed course.
2nd to last, and by no means least, at no 6 – we meandered along the seafront wall to Pier Point Restaurant and Bar where pan seared hake, clams, samphire, dill and seafood foam, served with Sharpham Wine and Cheese rosé for our final fishy course in the feast.
Nearly full to the brim, this melt in the mouth fillet of fish with delicate yet enhancing bedfellows of salty samphire, light foam and sweet clams made for a light yet heavenly dish. A dry yet fruity rose was delicious, full of fruity goodness, and went down very well.
No 7 already? Yes it was our final venue (sad face) but we found ourselves in 7th heaven! On The Rocks – Torquay treated us to a dessert of apple crumble, salted caramel fudge and citrus yoghurt sorbet, served with Origin Coffee Roasters coffee.
This was one of the best desserts I have had in a long time – crunch, velvety sweet and dreamy caramel, superbly cooked soft apples, and then the freshness of the sorbet. A wonderful cup of coffee washed it all down.
If that wasn’t all enough, England’s Seafood Coast sent us off with branded cupcakes too!
The verdict? What an array of talented restaurants and chefs on our shorelines. I plan to go to back to all of these venues at some point as they all have fabulous food on offer, aside from these events.
It was a wonderful way to experience multiple venues as well as celebrate the excellent seafood from our Devon coastline. In fact, it’s a great idea to devise a food trail of your own! Starters in one venue, mains in another, tapas and cocktails in between and finish on pudding and a pint somewhere else? Gather some friends or a special date and do it!
This event wouldn’t have been possible without all the chefs, independent restaurants and drinks producers involved. Plus Brixham Fish Market Brixham Seafood Food Farms, The Blue Sea Food Company, Carlsberg & SHOT BY ROB.
If you’d like to see our images from the day, head over to our Insta story.
*This is classed as an *ad* but we were invited as guests of the The Seafood Feast in exchange for sharing our experience as well as letting our readers know about the great venues and events; this has not affected our opinion and the blog has not been seen or approved before publishing.*