When Urban Reef boasts on its website that it has 'the best sea views', it's not kidding. Situated right on the promenade at the transformed Boscombe Overstrand, the restaurant has a truly enviable location.

There is something infinitely calming about the sound of waves crashing onto the beach, particularly out of season when the seafront is deserted. And Urban Reef has certainly capitalised on that relaxed vibe - with a welcoming, chilled out ambience evident as soon as you walk through the door.

We are greeted by a friendly staff member, who offers us the choice of having a drink downstairs - where bar snacks are also on the menu - or going straight up to the main restaurant. We choose the former, and a seat in the window, enjoying the chance to catch our breath after a busy day at work.

But when we venture upstairs, the informal vibe continues, along with those stunning views, thanks to a floor to ceiling window which looks out onto the seafront.

Urban Reef's dinner menu features a good mix of fish, meat and vegetarian dishes, with daily changing specials thrown in for good measure.

I chose the scallop and crab thermidor (£9) to start, followed by the Dorset lamb and root vegetable pie (£16), while my husband opted for the slow cooked pork cheeks (£7) and the West Country sirloin steak (£20).

Both starters were attractively presented and generous in size. My thermidor, which was baked in the shell, was accompanied by a pleasingly tangy Ogleshield cauliflower cheese with a brioche crust, which gave a satisfying crunch to the dish.

The melt-in-the-mouth tender pork cheeks were served in a tomato and pepper ragout, with Roquefort and salsa verde, giving the dish a little kick of heat.

Our mains were generous in size - my pie came with a glazed lamb sausage, parsnip puree, dauphinoise potato and a rosemary jus. I was delighted the pie was a "proper pie", not just some filling in a dish with a top on. Both the pastry and the filling were extremely tasty, with the meat falling apart at the mere touch of the fork. The sausage was full of flavour, beautifully offset by the sweetness of the puree, and the potato was the perfect accompaniment.

My husband's juicy steak, which was served with grilled mushroom, vine tomatoes, confit of garlic and chunky chips, was cooked to perfection, while the chips were pleasingly crispy on the outside while light and fluffy inside.

By this point we were pretty full, but determined to give the dessert menu a try.

I chose a selection of ice creams and sorbets (£6), while my husband went for the day's special, passion fruit cheesecake (£5.50).

The three scoops of ice cream - one chocolate, one vanilla and one salted caramel - were all delicious, but I sadly had to admit defeat, while the cheesecake was the perfect, light dish with which to finish the evening.

We left feeling thoroughly full, and thoroughly relaxed.

(BLOB) Urban Reef, Overstrand, Boscombe, 01202 443960, urbanreef.com