Positive vibes fill Turtle Bay which is not just worth visiting for the food but for the whole experience.
The Caribbean restaurant which opened on September 26 is surprisingly large, has a range of different furniture including high and low tables, wooden and cushioned seats, and has the bar as a feature with lots of space around it.
After hearing about the success of the launch party last month, which involved a live band, free cocktails and a big crowd, I thought I would give Ealing’s new addition a try.
Of the drinks sampled, the winner for me was Turtle Bay’s home-made ginger beer with spiced pepper, cloves and lime, £3.55. I would go as far as saying it was the best ginger beer I have ever had, you can really tell it has been made with fresh ingredients.
To start I had Sweetcorn Fritters with hot sauce, £4.95, and my friend had Pulled Jerk Pork, with rocket, butternut squash, mango, orange and coconut shavings, £4.95.
She said her pork salad was nice and spicy with the mango balancing things out and keeping it fresh, but she did admit a serious case of food envy when she saw and tasted my dish.
The fritters were very satisfying, full of flavour, filling but not too much - a perfect starter.
We also had a side order of sweet plantain, £2.35. It is not every day you eat plantain so it was a bit of a treat.
When it came to main meals, my friend won the prize for the best choice.
I had the Trini Curry Fish ‘One Pot’ with salmon, prawns, squid, white fish, coconut, sweet onion chutney, rice ‘n’ peas, flatbread, £9.65. The portion was huge and I enjoyed the fish and seafood but there was one flavour that did not agree with me, although I could not quite work out what it was.
My dinner date’s Jerk Chicken (half) with Caribbean slaw and sweet potato mash, £9.95, on the other hand was a huge success. The term huge is apt because the portion seemed more like a double portion, and the chicken was great.
For pudding I had the spiced chocolate pot with orange zest, coconut shavings and coconut ice cream while my friend indulged in the Caymanas rum cake with vanilla ice cream, both £4.85.
Despite being intensely rich I managed to polish mine off just fine as it was moreish and the different flavours were exciting.
My friend said her spicy dessert was the highlight of her meal.
Turtle Bay seems to attract an absolute mixture of people of different ages and cultures.
When we walked out, the rest of Ealing central was so still and quiet in comparison. It seems everyone is flocking to the new Caribbean place in town.