Quirky places to eat on the Isle of Wight

Whether it’s from our farms, in our restaurants or in the kitchens, breweries and distilleries of the award-winning producers, there’s something about the Isle of Wight that results in food and drink of the highest quality.

Looking for something a little different? We have just the thing…

If you like to read while you eat and drink try the Gurnard Press in Gurnard village, where this stylish little store also offers artisan coffee and food with the newspapers and magazines.

Take brunch, lunch, dinner or a drink in The Bandstand, winner of the Isle of Wight Conservation Award 2016, a unique café-restaurant that has been lovingly restored whilst retaining its vintage charm. Situated in an elevated position on Culver Parade, every table enjoys stunning views over Sandown Bay.

For a streamlined, futuristic bar and garden serving bowl dishes such as slow roasted shoulder of lamb, saffron couscous and baba ganoush, visit Moocows in – where else? – Cowes. Their mezes can include mixed fish saganaki and sweet chicken in banana leaves, with vegetarian and gluten-free alternatives available.

For vintage kitsch with your afternoon snack, stroll along to Lady Scarlett’s Tea Parlour on Ventnor Esplanade. The loo has been kitted out as an Anderson shelter and the delicious British food is all about healthy eating and simplicity – as it was in the 1940s.

Along from Ventnor is The Crab Shed at Steephill Cove. You can’t book but the crab pasties and mackerel ciabatta at this beach-side eaterie are well worth any wait.

Routiers award-winners Mojacs, of Shooters Hill in Cowes, will serve you up a bunch of edible delights too, including crispy onion, fried spinach and polenta crumble, roasted vegetables, cannellini beans, tomato and herb sauce, although it’s also a bit of a palace for gin-lovers, too!

Lovers of mezzes and music may want to while away a lunchtime at The Piano Café in Freshwater, chowing down on homemade smoked mackerel pâté, prosciutto, a selection of Isle of Wight cheeses, and sourdough, while a real piano is played gently in the background.

But if shopping and street fashion is you love, you’ll want to try The Coffee Room at Skintrade in Newport. Named after a Duran Duran song, this stylish independent store has been trading for more than 20 years before opening up a coffee shop that’s no less cool. Fresh produce and local bread are the order of the day, including home-made cheese scones and sausage rolls and they serve up a mean fish-finger sarnie, as well as award-winning Jasper’s coffee.

The Chocolate Apothecary in Ryde allows you to browse a selection of eclectic trinkets, before sampling wonderful choccies, indulgent hot chocolates and deserts, including a sumptuous selection of gluten-free cakes.

And last – but never least – make time to visit our world-famous Garlic Farm which has been producing the pungent bulbs for more than 40 years. They’re always cooking up wonderful dishes in their restaurant, and their shop stocks myriad garlicky delicacies, from smoked garlic, to Black Garlic ice cream, beer and vodka.

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