Restaurants

Formal or fun, these are eateries where you can have a full meal, and which open in the evening

Wickham Bistro

wickhambistro.com

With a cosy atmosphere and rustic decor, this restaurant/café feels like a friendly family meal at home – but then, that’s what it is – a family affair, run by chef Sharon, and her husband and three kids. Delicious, healthy home-cooked food, reasonable prices, and super friendly staff. Make sure to book if for evenings – their evening opening days are Friday and Saturday. With a different menu every time, this restaurant is one of our absolute faves. Their Sunday roasts are apparently legendary – watch their Facebook page for their latest nosh offerings and special events.

Trattoria Italiana

trattoriaitaliana.co.uk

One of Bexhill’s Italian restaurants, the lovely staff here will treat you like royalty. Dress up a bit, and come to Trattoria for a more formal evening meal in a lively, friendly, warm atmosphere. There is a plentiful choice of pizza, pasta and meat and fish dishes to choose from on their menus.

It is in Trattoria Italiana that Julian and I first had our ridiculous idea of buying a holiday let in Bexhill…so it is obviously food that gets the creative juices flowing!

Look out for the moped on the ceiling…

Bentley’s Steak House

bentleyssteakhouse.com

Massive carnivore? Then you might just find what you want here. The owners here are local business owners also at the helm at the butchers over the road, and they hang and age their own meat on the promises.

With American-style booth seating and a large, lively restaurant space, this is a great venue for a celebration meal for all ages. You can stuff your face on some eye-watering steaks and other chunks of meat, and stuff yourself silly with a dessert afterwards too. Wear expandable trousers.

Bistro 45

Bistro 45

Well, since we’re only a stone’s throw from Belgium, why not?! This lovely restaurant, with its quirky interiors and homely feel, is a bistro that serves a bewildering array of mussel pots – succulent moules in all sorts of delicious cooking liquors. But if moules mariniéres ain’t your bag, don’t fret, because there are also mouthwatering burgers, fish dishes, crépes and other delicious mains, starters, lunch bites and sharing dishes to choose from, not to mention crépes and waffles for desserts.

They also have a fantastic menu of Belgian beers, including lovely fruit beers, blond beers, and dark beers, so if you fancy yourself a beer connoisseur you need to get down here.

Look for lots of Tintin references, reading matter in the loo, and beautiful booze bottles in use as water bottles – just to confuse you!

This one is Julian’s favourite.

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The Culinaire

www.theculinaire.co.uk

The Culinaire restaurant brings you contemporary Indian cuisine from chef Kuldeep, who has worked in the finest hotels in India. This is fine dining, with beautifully presented dishes and good portion control! There is a good varied menu, including fantastic children’s menu and a tasting menu too, if you just can’t choose one dish. Well worth a try, this restaurant has near perfect ratings and reviews on TripAdvisor, so get your taste buds at the ready and book up.

The Seafood Brasserie

www.seafoodbrasserie.co.uk

Sister restaurant to Trattoria Italiana, the Seafood Brasserie has the same warm welcome, professionalism and great food. Fast becoming a destination restaurant for seafood lovers, this is definitely one to hit if you’re looking for a tasty plate of food, with many stated on TripAdvisor that it is as good as a top London restaurant. Great for ‘those little extras’ like complementary olives, the Seafood Brasserie should be high up on your list of meals out.

Thai Chava

www.thaichava.co.uk

If like us you love Thai food, then head over to Thai Chava for your fix. Relatively new, it is a family run business, and unusually (and we think this is quite fun) it is unlicensed – so bring your own wine. They do of course charge corkage but by all accounts it is not ludicrous. It has a garden area, and has the kind of formal but relaxed atmosphere typical of many Thai restaurants, where you are treated civilly and looked after well by the staff. Best to book, as the restaurant is not huge, and you don’t want to be disappointed.

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Picasso Express

www.picassoexpress.co.uk

A welcoming and friendly restaurant with an easy-going atmosphere and lively decor, this is fast becoming a favourite of many who visit in Bexhill. Definitely one that will welcome the kids, and with a good, broad Italian menu that will deliver something for everyone. We like the urban industrial interior and funky colours in the bar, and this restaurant has a reputation for being good value for money.

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The Driftwood

The Driftwood

This very cool new boutique hotel has been drawing nationwide press attention for its hip interiors, fine dining and friendly service, and we would absolutely agree. It has settled into an asian-inspired evening menu which we haven’t sampled yet (it’s on our dining bucket list); but its breakfast fare is what has branded it our favourite breakfast place. Bexhill offers plenty of great greasy spoon caffs for brekkers, but if you fancy a classier start to the day, with smoked salmon and scrambled eggs, or eggs benedict, or french toast with berries, then we heartily recommend you include The Driftwood on your schedule! Honestly the best full English I’ve ever had.

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Athena’s Fish & Chips

Athenas Fish & Chips

When we have fish and chips, this is where we always go. Their fish is caught by local night boats and delivered daily, and on their blackboard you can see where their fish has come from that day – and their potatoes! They are passionate about the quality and environmental impact of their food, supporting British food industry and keep nasties out of your dinner.

So you can feel smug about the responsibility of your food choices while you stuff your happy little face on the beachfront, fish & chip box in hand.

Or do what we do, and eat them in Tobago’s diner!

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Cafés

Our selection of the best daytime eateries – good for morning coffees, snacks, light lunches, and afternoon treats

Di Paolo’s

dipaolocaferestaurant.co.uk

You will notice that a lot of Bexhill’s restaurants are traditional Italian family businesses, and Di Paolo’s is probably the one closest to our hearts, and this is due to its teeth-rottingly fabulous gelati. With flavours as dribblingly good as Snickers and their take on Ferraro Rocher, alongside old favourites like Rum & Raisin, Mint Choc Chip and new and seasonal flavours too (Apple Crumble anyone?) these are the town’s best ice creams. Prepare to find yourself drawn into a daily Di Paolo’s gelato ritual.

They’re not just there for ice cream though – Di Paolo’s do a good breakfast fry-up, and at lunch tuck into hearty roasts and pies of the day. It’s lunch the old fashioned way, your local caff serving you up a filling, frill-free main and pud to boot. Order at the counter for your informal drop-in, or you can have sit-down table service. Super friendly staff will greet you like you’re long lost friends. A very firm favourite.

Patty & Franks

Patty & Franks Facebook Page

This fabulous little shack is a hidden gem in Bexhill’s armoury of eateries – 100% plant based dishes, served in very generous portions from Patty’s shack at the end of the King George V Colonnade on the promenade. We were extremely excited when my dairy-intolerant and now veggie daughter discovered this place because we knew she could eat every single thing they ever make.

The hotdog was crazy good and bowled over our intensively vegan-sceptic friend, who said “I can’t believe that isn’t a proper dirty old saveloy!”; and their veg lasagna was just out of this world. The food defies belief – I can only assume Patty has magic potions in her fingers. Check when she’s open on her Facebook page and make a beeline for what might end up being your best lunch in Bexhill.

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The Italian Way

italianway.co.uk

Another of the Italian restaurants! More good food, hearty Italian cooking with very generous portions and good lunchtime fare. The interior is very atmospherically decked out, with supercool lighting and some amazing jars of chilli peppers and olives to visually whet your appetite.

Friendly staff and super tasty food, this is another of our favourite eateries. Have the seafood pasta, says Julian! And I say stuff your face with one of their very indulgent desserts. But be sure to loosen your belt first.

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Tea Beside the Sea

www.teabesidethesea.co.uk

One of the businesses that nestle on the seafront in The King George V Colonnade, just in front of the De La Warr Pavilion, which was built in 1911 to celebrate the coronation of the new king, Tea Beside The Sea promises you homemade seasonal jams with your scones, tasty breakfasts, filling café style lunches and delicious cakes. Perfect for a little rest from a bracing walk on the promenade – the sea air is good for working up an appetite don’t you know – a slice of cake or two won’t hurt.

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Alfredo & Sue Silva’s

www.silvas-cafe.co.uk

An unassuming looking little café in Western Road, the food in here is home-cooked, rustic and wholesome, with delicious quiches, the usual lunch fare of toasties and sandwiches, and some surprising international touches – tapas, Swiss salads and the best selection of teas in Bexhill.

Super-friendly, and with a salad dressing that goes into my top 5 best salad dressings in the world (yes, I have such a thing); this is home-cooked, lovingly prepared filling food at its best for a lunchtime treat.

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Mathilde’s Kitchen

www.mathildeskitchen.com

Run by Mathilde herself, this is a quirky, cute café with the very finest of French patisserie, a lovely arty atmosphere and something to tempt every tastebud. Definitely a must for a mid-morning coffee or afternoon treat. The décor is typically French, with many finds from french marchés aux puces – that’s flea markets to you and me. Look out for the genuine french handwriting on the patisserie labels!

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