Taste of the ocean

A new eatery serving up the freshest locally-caught fish and seafood is making waves among dicerning diners.

From shacks on the beach to fancy dining restaurants, Dorset boasts a variety of places where diners can enjoy some of the freshest locally caught fish and seafood in the country.

One of the newest additions is The Noisy Lobster which opened its doors in Ringwood early this year following the success of its sister restaurant at Avon Beach.
Although the main menu is sophisticated, there’s no pretension and the emphasis is on relaxed, casual dining.

There is also a daily specials menu which included scallops with parsnip puree, root vegetable crisp, oysters and mains such as half or whole lobster or pan fried mackerel fillets.

For starters my husband and I shared tempura prawns (£6.30), four tiger prawns which were fleshy and succulent in a light, crispy batter, stylishly presented on a black slate with a wedge of lemon, salad garnish and a ramekin of homemade chilli jam which was perfectly pitched, sweet but with enough of kick to awaken the tastebuds.

We also had a generous portion of salt and pepper calamari (£5.80) on a bed of salad leaves with a tangy, homemade tartar sauce. My husband reckoned it was the best calamari he had tasted as it was full of flavour.

For mains I couldn't resist The Noisy Platter which was very good value at £23.50 and included half a lobster, two seared scallops with garlic and herb butter, a whole soft shell crab in tempura batter, a good portion of superb chips and a mixed leaf salad.

Once again a great deal of thought had gone into the presentation and I loved the little touches such as the slice of lemon wedged in the lobster claw.

My husband was tempted by the sound of the Maple and Cayenne Spiced Pulled Pork Burger (£9) served with an apple fritter, homemade slaw and chips.

But he decided to go for the mussels (£12) which were meaty and tender, served in a rich, creamy sauce with white wine and garlic, which he mopped up with a portion of fresh, buttered bread.

The dessert menu included raspberry crème brulee served with a pistachio biscotti (£4.80) and a strawberry and white chocolate cheesecake with a berry coulis (£4.60).

We opted for the dessert option on the specials menu: a selection of treats, passionfruit shortbread, a crunchy pecan praline and a dome of strawberry cranachan with a milky latte coffee all for £6.

Every dish was a good size and well presented and is an excellent choice whether you want a family friendly evening meal, an informal place for lunch or a relaxing place for a drink. There is also an outside garden and a good sized car back at the back.

There is a whole booklet devoted to drinks which includes cocktails and an array of gin options such Spanish style G&Ts, Bombay Sapphire, Hendricks and Sipsmith Sloe Gin. There is also an extensive wine list starting at around £20 per bottle.

I mentioned to our lovely waitress Sophie that I liked sauvignon blanc and she recommended Urlar, (£27) an organic sauvignon blanc from New Zealand which was an excellent choice with a clean, fresh, fruity flavour wit a hint of lime and passion fruit which enhanced, rather than over powered the delicate flavour of the seafood.

So if you want good value, locally sourced seafood then The Noisy Lobster at Ringwood is definitely worth a visit.

There are also special offers such as Fizz Fridays - a glass of prosecco and the ever popular fish and chips for lunch or dinner at £13.50.

For more information, visit www.noisylobster.co.uk