Visiting Poole and looking for recommendations for dinner for a 21year old early Aug. Needs to cater for mixed group of 13 with mixed tastes in cuisine.
Thanks anywhere in particular that would be special?
Thanks looking for a nice menu and nice venue and special etc
There are not that many special restaurants for a special occasion in Poole town centre, in my opinion. The best I've been to is The Guildhall Tavern (don't worry, it's not a pub, it's a very French restaurant), which was good but I had issues with the quality of the seafood I was served, and it was expensive.
The two best local places I've eaten are a little way outside Poole. The food has been consistently excellent when I've eaten in both, with the emphasis on fresh local produce that is in season; service is good and both locations are stunning.
The first is The Priory in nearby Wareham (about 20min drive). It's in a beautiful walled old enclosure by the river but away from the bustle of the quay. Emphasis is French, it's not formal but there'd probably be frowns if you wandered in in shorts and a vest. If it's fine you can eat outside on the terrace.
The second is The Pig on The Beach, on Studland, which can be reached from Poole via the Sandbanks chain ferry - an adventure in itself. It's a bit more shabby-chic (which might appeal more to a 21-year-old) but has a superb menu and lovely grounds with views of Studland Bay and Old Harry rocks. I think they have a hut you can book outside for private functions.
Another contender would be the Rick Stein place in Sandbanks, about a 15min drive from Poole town centre.
For a really nice sea view: Branksome Beach Bar and Terrace (Branksome Chine, 2 miles from town centre) overlooks Bournemouth beach. The food is not as good as the others mentioned here but still pretty decent; it's the view, from the Isle of Wight to Swanage, that makes this place special.
Good luck deciding ... I myself would avoid Poole Quay like the plague in early August and frequently do!