Review of Terroir Tapas in Southbourne
Its wonderful to live so close to the thriving Southbourne high street, full of delicious local restaurants and bars but its been a while since we have had the time (and the forethought) to secure a table at Terroir Tapas. Since our last visit, they have moved to a more ‘tasting menu’ style of service with Wednesday – Saturday evenings serving 10 courses and a 4 course menu Wednesday and Thursday evening and Friday and Saturday lunchtime.
Terroir Tapas is an eco-aware restaurant, and has always blazed a trail of sustainability and preservation without losing quality, something which has recently been acknowledged with a new and much coveted Green Sustainability Michelin Star. Everything is sourced as locally as possible and as sustainably as possible, including foraging, fermenting, salting and pickling (the list is endless) to extend seasonality without affecting flavour, and finding niche small producers, who often also take bi-products and create something new. It is incredible to hear the passion with which they care about each ingredient and each supplier and that comes across in every aspect of the meal.
There are no menus and we managed to book the ‘Chef’s Table’ where we were sat at the (large) bar area, overlooking the kitchen and included Head Chef Jesse Wells and his brilliant team carefully explaining each dish to us as it arrived. We also decided to share a couple of wine pairings between the 4 of us and were treated to an array of drinks, each choice carefully curated (from their huge range of English only wines) to match the dish.
I unfortunately have a lactose intolerance, which usually makes me wary of tasting menus, but the team could not have been more helpful creating dishes that were suitable for me, either slightly different from the others, or something completely different but safe for me to eat. It took away all of the anxiety and they couldn’t have been kinder about it.
At £100 per head for 10 courses, this experience is something that might need to be saved for, but this is perfect for a special occasion and in every aspect of the experience you can see where that money goes… its investment into the land, the farms, the growers, the producers and the chefs to keep creating their delicious art right in front of you.
The menu changes with the ever changing seasons, so I won’t list here what we ate as its unlikely to be the same in a week or two’s time… but I can’t wait for another excuse to return and see what else they have created with the food in season.
I would recommend booking as far ahead as you can as tables go quickly, but you can read more about the Terroir Tapas ethos here and see a sample menu – https://terroirtapas.com/ You can also book via their website or by calling 01202 259933.
Terroir Tapas – 81 Southbourne Grove, Bournemouth, BH6 3QX.
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The venue did not know I was a food writer and we paid full price.