If you’re anything like me, you’ll be the type of person who is forever looking for new kinds of food to try. I’m not someone who will stick to one type of food when looking for somewhere to brunch with friends or dine on date night. I enjoy finding something different, something with new flavours and dishes and also somewhere that’s Instagrammable is an absolute plus.
Well Turtle Bay in Colchester covers all of this!
I attended the opening of this restaurant a few months ago where we got to try some samples from the menu which were all amazing so this time I decided to drag my friend Tarnya along with me to try some dishes of our choice.
We started the only way you should in Turtle Bay…with Cocktails.
Lucky for us it was happy hour and we got 2 for 1 on each of our drinks. I went for the Bahama Mama, made with Koko Kanu coconut rum, Banana Liqueur, pineapple juice, pomegranate syrup and bitters. It reminded me of being on the beach somewhere nice and hot! The Vanilla and Passionfruit Mojito is also extremely good, in fact I think I’ve now tried 80% of Turtle Bay’s cocktail menu and they are all bloody incredible and definitely not skimped on the rum!
Turtle Bay’s starters or ‘Cutters’ are inspired by street vendor food across the Caribbean. I went for the Trini Doubles which are puffed up bars roti flatbreads topped with curried chickpeas, cucumber and mango chutney and coconut shavings. They are also Vegan- it’s worth noting here that the menu selection for vegetarians and vegans is great- I went for all veggie/vegan food and Tarnya covered the meat/seafood for me. She started with the Crispy Chilli Squid and really rated it- she said it was slightly hot but not too much for her- she’s not a fan of overly hot/spicy food so that was perfect for her.
Moving onto mains, I went for the Spinach, Aubergine and Sweet Potato Curry which came with steamed rice all in a little pot and flatbread on the side. It was quite a hot curry (well hotter than I usually go for) but I absolutely loved it. It was very filling and the Caribbean flavours are incredible.
Tarn went for the babyback pork ribs with sweet potato fries and said how tender the meat was and it just fell off the bone. They are jerk marinated so a little bit of a kick there again but such great flavour.
I just want to mention here how great the atmosphere is in Turtle Bay. The decor is beautiful- fairy lights and Caribbean themed decor make for a super chilled out relaxed vibe, along with gentle Caribbean music and amazing service just combine to make the best eating experience.
After sinking our second cocktails we decided to go all out and have dessert. The Caymanas Rum Upside Down Cake was that definitely made with a strong rum! It was delicious and the vanilla ice cream that came with it just cut through the rum nicely- honestly I could eat it right now!! Tarnya went for the Banana and Toffee Cheesecake which I sneaked a spoonful of and that was equally as tasty!
There was not one thing I could find wrong with the whole meal/experience in Turtle Bay. It’s somewhere I will always recommend to everyone now and the first place I suggest when arranging dinner with friends.
Go and give it a try, I guarantee you’ll love it and want to immediately book a flight to the Caribbean!
*This meal was complimentary in exchange for an honest review.