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We gave this restaurant a second chance recently.  Ocean is the title of the new ‘fine dining’ offering occupying the excellent harbour side room, previously the much praised Samphire before its sad demise.  The first time it was fair to middling, helped by a very personable front of house chap who spoke to everyone as they arrived and settled them happily.  It was nowhere as near as good as its predecessor, but the waterfront views compensated.  I noted the wine was vastly overpriced.

These faults did not deter a second visit when prompted by friends to join a table.  I doubt we would go again.  The wine was still very pricey, but the food was distinctly poor.  My starter was passable, pleasant prawns.  I should have asked for two and left it at that.  My main course fish steak was overdone, dry, cold.  Aiming for a tasty crust, the chef had forgotten that the interior still needs to be soft and pliable.  He failed.  The vegetables were cold and strangely tasting of curry.  The plates were all near to cold, luke warm at best.  The friends had steak, one of which was reported as being exactly as ordered, the others said to be very fatty.  Deserts seemed fair.

The seating is an improvement on the old interior, but that’s not hard.  It’s nothing to write home about.  Mostly cold stone walls against which new banquette seating helps to damp the sound.

Why do women insist on yelling in restaurants?  There always seems to be a Mrs Raucous on the next table pointed at me.  She seems to follow me around every time I go out to dine.  I now carry ear plugs.

We will not be seen on another Ocean voyage.  Which is a pity, because it’s a splendid spot.

Edited by war baby
Small typo and omissions

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You should try Seven Kingdoms, the chef from Samphire has set up camp there. Gone there twice now and not been disappointed

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I can agree with that.  But keep it quiet or else it will get too popular and we’ll never get in :)

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Another brief report on my third visit to Ocean.  Once again this restaurant was selected as our meeting place by friends.  I will modify or dilute some of my earlier critique.  The wine continues to be very pricey for what it is, which is a pity.  Surely they can find some good ‘vin ordinaire’ to offer as a reasonably priced ‘quaffer’.  They don’t show the drinks list on their website, unsurprising as the cost would deter customers.

This time I would rate the food as edible or a bit better.  The starter went down fine, but was so in memorable that I forget now what I had, so no comment.  For main course I played safe and asked for a rare steak.  It was fine and arrived medium as I expected.  Not rare, but very tender and tasty, having been well hung I guess.

The host was attentive and polite.  I told him, without being rude, that I did not enjoy my food when I last visited.  So, overall the experience was fair to not bad. That’s a glowing review, considering what I wrote about the previous dinner.

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On 5/30/2018 at 1:47 PM, Neil Down said:

You should try Seven Kingdoms, the chef from Samphire has set up camp there. Gone there twice now and not been disappointed

Tried this venue on reading your brief revue, food ? some of the best seafood I have had on the Island, Tan rogans, just as they turned from raw to perfect, The cod was spot on, just beyond sushi, lovely in fact. Price? I think was value for the quality we had.

Negatives? The venue is an acoustic nightmare, we sat at the part of the mezzanine overlooking the bar and it was hard to converse over the hen party guffaws. Would I return? Damn right but I would avoid  Saturday and sit away from the noisy edge [they did offer us this when we were seated, stupid me said, no this is fine]

If you hate overcooked fish then this is the place for you.

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Agree about 7 Kingdoms. Wouldn’t return to Ocean if they paid me. Owner/Manager is arrogant and ignorant and the food was poor. And, yes, the.wine is seriously expensive. They sell an Albariño for 5 times what exactly the same wine costs in Tesco. I expect mark up, but £20 a bottle on a £5 retail cheap white is taking the piss.

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Can't say anything about the food at 7 kingdoms because I haven't eaten any, but their very expensive mojito was absolutely tremendous.

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25 minutes ago, John Wright said:

Agree about 7 Kingdoms. Wouldn’t return to Ocean if they paid me. Owner/Manager is arrogant and ignorant and the food was poor. And, yes, the.wine is seriously expensive. They sell an Albariño for 5 times what exactly the same wine costs in Tesco. I expect mark up, but £20 a bottle on a £5 retail cheap white is taking the piss.

It's coz we is the Monte Carlo of the Irish sea!

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