I spend a large majority of my day thinking about food; snacks between meals, what to have for lunch and dinner, the biscuits and cakes I want to stuff myself with, new recipes I want to try, cutting back on meat and the take-outs or meals out I should treat myself with when payday comes around. So, yes, food is a big part of my life.
Though dining out is not something I often do, I love treating myself with something tasty when out with family and friends. In North Devon, I am lucky to have found a good range of places to eat at (a huge bonus from moving from Cardiff, which has loads of great restaurants), which have become favourites of mine, and there are still loads of places I want to try!
Welcoming staff, lively atmosphere and great Mexican flavours make Jalapenos one of my favourites. I have been several times and never been disappointed with the great food, cocktails and service. The Tex-Mex food of tacos, burritos, enchiladas and nachos are tasty and filling, and the sides are always good – if you have room! The number of onion rings in the stack was a surprise – thankfully I could take home what was left!
Monty’s Caribbean Kitchen, Barnstaple
A family run business, Monty’s Caribbean Kitchen has been in Barnstaple since 2014 and quickly became a favourite with locals. Monty’s has brought the flavour of the West Indies to North Devon, starting as a catering trailer before opening the restaurant. There is a lunch menu, takeaway and evening menu with a ride range of dishes such as house speciality Jamaican jerk pork, chicken or mushroom, mutton or goat curry, tasting platters, Rasta channa and loads of great sides (fried dumplings – YUM).
Tea by the Taw, Barnstaple
Tea by the Taw is a vintage tea room on The Strand in Barnstaple, overlooking the River Taw. Serving up cream teas, homemade cakes, sandwiches, tea, coffee and milkshakes, I have never been disappointed with the food at tea by the Taw. The fact it is always busy is a good sign, and you are sure to find a table yourself and tuck into big slices of amazing cake that will leave you full for the whole day!
Custom House, Barnstaple
Every town and city needs a good burger place, and Custom House is Barnstaple’s. The locally-owned restaurants specialise in British and American food, and the amazing burgers are their highlight. You can build your own burger (there are 750,000 different combinations!), and there is also challenges such as the Macho Nacho challenge where you can attempt a bucket load of nachos topped with brisket, pulled pork, chilli, cheese and more within 25 minutes and its free. A current special is the camemburger – deep fried camembert in a burger!
The Terrace Tapas & Wine Bar, Ilfracombe
The Terrace Tapas & Wine Bar in Ilfracombe serves up freshly cooked and authentic Spanish tapas. The relaxed dining style was something I appreciated along with an amazing variety of tapas dishes. I visited for my birthday and went for the endless menu option, where my parents and I chose three dishes from over ten different options that just seemed to keep coming! The cocktails were a great complement to the food, so I will definitely be going back again soon!
Places I Have Yet to Check Out
I have heard a lot of people rave about Block, a family-friendly place for casual dining. They serve breakfast and lunch, with a menu that often changes so you can enjoy amazing dishes every week. My aim for the coming weeks is to eat at Block and see if it lives up to everyone’s recommendations!
Escape Down the Rabbit Hole
Escape Down the Rabbit Hole is a fairly new addition to Barnstaple, combing a café/restaurant with escape rooms with a movie twist. The food served are not official recipes but inspired by all sorts of movies – Disney, Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and Pulp Fiction, to name a few! As a movie fan, I can’t wait to try this place out finally!
Do you have any favourite local places to dine out at? I’d love to know about them – maybe I will visit myself! – leave me a comment below!