Tuesday, 26 May 2009

East Beach Café

A near emergency of an on call required my attention in Littlehampton, West Sussex. The customer had been starved of music* for a few days and he had decided that the above was the culprit. Like a supposedly unwell pet that miraculously recovers in the immediate presence of a vet, there was of course absolutely nothing wrong with the unit. The 1¾ hour’s journey (driven irritatingly textbook-like according to The Highway Code by KC in a car that’s très rapide) proved fulfilling in the end.

Littlehampton can hardly be described as a town where the sun shineth (not just literally but metaphorically as well). I’ve always found Littlehampton to be two dimensional, if you thought that Worthing was nothing special then you haven’t set foot here.

The place is consistently grim during the winter months. Irrespective of whether the sun is shining or not you can see that the beach has a certain forlornness about it.

Thankfully credit has to be given to Littlehampton Town Council on granting planning permission for East Beach Café to be built over two years ago.

This little seaside town now has an iconic building that’s more than worthy of a destination status.

As an added bonus the food here is decent to boot.
For some reason mobile phones don't work inside- I'll go for yipee!

Townies beware, do yourself a favour; book a table to avoid disappointment. The place was packed when we arrived at 12.30pm. The inside doesn’t quite share the same impact as the exterior, but then again as suggested by its name it’s by en a café after all.

The buzzy ambience was accelerated by the view of the sullen English Channel. The service is headed by a chap of metrosexual leanings and in turn efficiently aided by a team of very blonde and pretty waitresses. Henny, the young lady serving us was outstanding- her smiles…swoon. Before I talk about the food; there was one thing that I'd noticed, nearly everyone else was tucking into fish and chips (was I missing out on something here?) and boozing. As for the latter we went for the prim and proper standard of tea.

Butternut Squash Soup
This dish has become so popular now that to fumble it would be churlish. The Boy KC said it was good for a provincial effort but in no way a patch on this.

Asparagus with Serrano Ham and poached egg
I should’ve asked first on how the asparagus were going to be served. Here they arrived fridge-cold and I can’t stand that. Otherwise the spears were perfectly cooked and the not so free-range looking yolk made the whole dish just about bearable.

East Beach burger with mushrooms & cheese & chips

This is another popular standard at this place. The Boy declared that it tasted better than the one we had at Hawksmoor. I disagreed as I thought the patty was too stodgy and over seasoned. The chips we agreed were very good.

Sea Bream fillet with mixed beans, spinach, radish and tomato salsa

The term salsa is disputable, personally I think a broth is more accurate. On its own, the broth tasted unexciting however when the salty fish is broken into it, this dish was tremendous. It was also a dish that suggested I was glad I came here.

Cherry meringue
The Boy enjoyed his pud and saw it as a fitting end to his meal here. I’ve never been that excited about meringues or cherries so I declined the offer to try some.

Treacle tart, lemon & honeycomb ice cream
The description of the above belongs rightfully to the ‘go weak at the knees’ category. My verdict- accomplished.

I ended my meal with a delicious cup of coffee, so good I bought some of the beans. Coffee Compass.

Cold asparagus aside, it was a splendid afternoon beside the seaside. I would love to come back but only during the summer months. A seaworthy recommendation.

*Let it be perfectly clear that music is the food of love, and without it I wouldn’t have the means to englut indulge in my pastime of foodism.

BN17 5GB


On our way back to London we had to pass this building.

It’s huge and yet it’s only known as a chapel.

It’s also my old school.


Gastro1 said...

Lancing College ? Well I never.....

bellaphon said...

Gastro1- I disliked the place then, the older I get the more I respect it.

tehbus said...

I went to Hurstpierpoint. I disliked it then, and Im pretty sure I dislike it now :)

bellaphon said...

Tehbus- I remembered the bogs at Hursty were atrocious: re Inter-Schools athletics.