UPDATE: 2019 – This review is of the old original Beckett’s, not the new refurbished one. It’s probably for younger people such as Helen who enjoys going there along with her pals, especially for the unlimited Prosecco brunch! Or, wilder people than myself and my husband 😉 I’ve been a couple of times and it wasn’t for me.
Beckett’s wine bar is situated on Belleview Terrace close to Clarence Pier in Portsmouth. I used to go here to celebrate my birthday with a group of friends for years and each time I would hope and pray that they hadn’t changed the menu because the lamb in cream sauce – which I always chose – was so tender it was to die for. Luckily, apart from the specials it never did change. So after four years absence I thought I’d check Beckett’s out and see if it was still as good as it used to be.
As soon as I opened the door I got the familiar whiff of Beckett’s. It’s dimly lit, making it cosy with pictures on the walls. If there are several tables of noisy parties it can get quite loud and you end up having to shout, but luckily it wasn’t like that this evening although most tables were taken proving it was still poplar. And guess what? It was the same menu. Hurrah! So for starters I had what I always had which is deep fried brie with a small side salad and cranberry jelly. It was how I remembered it. The crumbs coating the brie was dry, not greasy at all and as you open it up the cheese oozes out. Delicious!
The main which I love is the neck fillet of lamb – “cooked until tender in a cream and brandy sauce with mushrooms and onions” – is SO good. There’s plenty of lamb and it just melts in the mouth. Catia and I shared a dish of sauté potatoes and on the specials was cabbage with pancetta and onion so we thought we’d have that instead of mixed vegetables. The cabbage dish was excellent, I was half wishing I hadn’t decided to share after all.
Catia went for the cod which was rather a large piece. She couldn’t manage it all though which was annoying, because it was so nice she didn’t want to stop eating it! We asked to wait for the dessert as we were feeling a little full. We washed it down with a nice glass of sauvignon blanc each and some tap water.
I normally always go for the strawberry brûlée whenever I visit Beckett’s which I love, but thought I’d best go with what Catia was having for fear that I would have food envy. We both decided upon the chocolate and nut bread & butter pudding. Custard for Catia and cream for me. There were plenty of nuts and it was really tasty.
We recognised the waitress having been there for years and it turns out she has been at Beckett’s for 16 years. We finished the evening off with a coffee each. The bill came to just shy of £35 each.
We really enjoyed the meal and it was definitely as good as it always used to be. We shall have to go back again soon and not leave it so long next time.
Living life, loving cake
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