The Isle of Wight's best restaurants & pubs

Food and Drink

Posted by Ed Roberts on 28th July 2020

Where we choose to eat and drink receives an elevated status when we are on holiday. For most of us, dining out may occur once or twice a month, but on holiday there’s a high likelihood that we will be looking for somewhere to eat at least once a day. We recognise the fun that you can have seeking out some extra special place to enjoy a meal, whether you are flexing the credit card for a fine-dining experience or are looking for a quality takeaway option – this is why we’ve compiled a guide to our favourite places to eat on the Isle of Wight.

The food and drink establishments on the Isle of Wight are no slouches when it comes to offering up fine grub for the locals and visitors. There’s a good selection of Italian, Indian and Chinese takeaways, plus gastropubs, dog-friendly cafes, seafood specialists and so much more to discover; there’s even a Michelin-starred restaurant on the island. Shop for locally sourced ingredients and delicacies all across the island and try something different. Although the Isle of Wight is home to several high street favourites, predominantly in Newport, there is a whole host of true one-offs and independent eateries awaiting the intrepid diner.

 

Why not stay at one of our self-catering holiday cottages on the Isle of Wight? We have some excellent prospects for the gastronome and the budding chefs amongst you, with luxury and large kitchens, fully equipped with all you need to conjure up some culinary wizardry. If you are hungry, get ready, because we are about to tempt your taste buds in good time for your trip to the Isle of Wight. Step out and try something new with our guide to fantastic eating on the Isle of Wight.

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Top Michelin-starred restaurants on the Isle of Wight

Thompson's | £££

Photo credit @pebblesinmypocket

Book a table at Thompson’s in the heart of Newport. As of 2020, this is currently the only restaurant on the island to have a Michelin star. Specialising in contemporary British fare, Chef Robert Thompson’s flagship restaurant offers unforgettable dining. Select a dish from the seasonal set menu, à la carte, or an eight-course tasting menu. The kitchen offers a series of cookery courses where you can learn new skills and develop your tastes and repertoire. Book ahead to avoid disappointment.

Stay at: Virginia Cottage | Sleeps: 6 guests 


Top gastropubs on the Isle of Wight

The Red Lion, Totland | ££

This gastropub at the western end of the Isle of Wight is a great place for a slap-up meal and a pint at the end of a long day’s walk. Close to The Needles Landmark Attraction and Tennyson Downs, The Red Lion in Totland Bay is a perfect place for a pitstop and refuel after a long day of walking the byways and trails of the island. The food is tasty and dependable, cornering the market on deluxe versions of British mealtime favourites. It gets busy in the summertime, but that’s a sign of a good place to eat and drink.

Stay at: Milton Stables | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 2 dogs

The Horse and Groom, nr Yarmouth | ££

Just 3 miles outside of the harbour town of Yarmouth, you could make a trip to The Horse and Groom after you’ve arrived on the ferry from the mainland. It’s a superb place to eat with a sturdy menu comprised of family-friendly meals. For kids, there is a play park in the garden with slides and swings to play on, which makes it a great choice for all members of the family. It has won the best family-friendly pub award for three years on the trot (2017-2019) and judging by its success, the trend looks set to continue too.

Stay at: Apple House | Sleeps: 4 guests


Top Italian restaurants on the Isle of Wight

Ristorante Michelangelo, Ryde | ££

Who doesn’t love Italian food? A high street favourite since the late 1970s in England, Italians have been leading the way when it comes to plying the evening dining crowd with something exotic to eat and drink. Ristorante Michelangelo specialises in authentic Italian-style pizza, and pasta dishes to make the mouth water. Vegetarian options concocted to perfection bolster the options and make this a must-visit foodie destination when you are on your trip to Ryde on the Isle of Wight.

Stay at: Iona Cottage | Sleeps: 8 guests + 1 dog

Pavarotti, Shanklin | ££

Eat like a king at this fine Italian restaurant close to the beach at the popular seaside resort of Shanklin. Then, walk off your feast with an amble along the Esplanade. Pavarotti has a great wine list and a suitably relaxed environment in which to unwind, uncork and while away the evening with good company and exceptional Italian food. The pizzas are to die for and don’t miss out on the antipasti plate for the starter. You will think that you have travelled to Italy, so delicious is the fare on offer here. Book ahead.

Stay at: The Sea Terrace Cottage | Sleeps: 6 guests 


Top Indian restaurants on the Isle of Wight

Ryde Tandoori, Ryde | ££

With a frighteningly good range of curries and other Indian and Far-Eastern dishes, the Ryde Tandoori is a wonderful choice for those that love to wind down with something spicy at the end of the day. The menu is full of intriguing dishes that are bound to cause dilemmas amongst you and your party. Choose from balti, vindaloo, Madras, biriyani, korma and so many more interesting Indian dishes.

Stay at:  Iona Cottage | Sleeps: 8 guests plus 1 dog

Eastern Edge, Sandown | ££

The Isle of Wight is home to several good Indian restaurants; another one we’d recommend is Eastern Edge, located in the coastal town of Sandown, close to the beach. It’s got a great range of Indian beers to cool the edge off the hot curries that populate its extensive menu. Using the best and freshest ingredients for its sauce blends, curry fans should head into Eastern Edge if they are staying on the east coast of the island.

Stay at: Beaulieu Cottage | Sleeps: 5 guests


Top seafood places to eat on the Isle of Wight

Ventnor Pier, Ventnor | £

Photo credit @mjnehwam

This is a takeaway option but it’s well worth including on your hit list if you are in Ventnor. Strike that; it’s worth making a detour to Ventnor for this place if you love seafood. Located on a working pier at the east end of Ventnor’s small beach, you will find Ventnor Fish Haven. It’s a tiny hut that sells fresh fish for you to fry up at home as well as some takeaway dishes. We’d recommend the crab samosa and chips. It’s unbeatable, cheap, cheerful and oh so good. Open in the daytime only.

Stay at: Gilmerton | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 1 dog

Bellamy’s Bistro, Sandown | ££

Photo credit @szymos

For a sensational seafood experience of an evening, we thoroughly recommend a visit to Bellamy’s Bistro in sunny Sandown. Fruits de mer, prawn cocktails and a veritable ocean of seafood dishes are waiting for you and your fellow diners to indulge in. It’s a great place to people watch and enjoy the experience of seeing course after course of fish and shellfish appear from the kitchen. Bellamy’s is a firm favourite with islanders, and we think you’d like it too.

Stay at: Castle Cottage | Sleeps: 3 guests


Top dog-friendly places to eat and drink on the Isle of Wight

Fisherman’s Cottage, Shanklin | ££

Photo credit by @gregorvw 

Take your friendly canine companion along to the Fisherman’s Cottage in Shanklin. This dog-friendly eatery has been welcoming our four-legged pals along to dine with us for ages, and it’s a wonderful place to kick back and enjoy a bout of informal dining. The Fisherman’s Cottage is one of the oldest pubs on the island and has been trading since the mid-1800s. You can find it just beyond Shanklin Chine at the southern end of the beach. The views from the tableside are great; you and your dog will love it.

Stay at: Keats House | Sleeps: 7 guests plus 2 dogs

The Cow, Yarmouth | ££

Photo credit by @thecowiow 

Bring your dog along to join you for your dinner at The Cow near Yarmouth. If you like dining outside, your hound can accompany you in the large garden. The menu here is great and full of grilled goodies that cover all surf, turf and veggie options. It's fully-licensed so you can enjoy some wine or beer with your choice too.

Stay at: Lodore | Sleeps: 6 guests plus 2 dogs


Stay with us on the Isle of Wight

We have some lovely self-catering holiday cottages all over the beautiful Isle of Wight, close to many of the places to eat and drink featured in this guide. Where will you stay on your holiday to the Isle of Wight?

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.