What do you think of when you think of Hastings? The Battle of Hastings in 1066, the Victorian architecture, the beaches, the funfair, the pier? Situated on our south coast and renowned for its fishing industry it was once one of the most important fishing ports in England, having had boats working from the beach in front of the ancient town for over a thousand years.
If you’ve visited Hastings you would more than likely have walked the promenade into the Old Town area, visited the amusement fun fair, sat on the beaches or possibly delved into an area named Rock-a-Nore situated at the farthest eastern point of the Old Town below the cliffs.
No day in Hastings would be complete without nestling down in a restaurant for some lunch and when you are, quite literally a stone’s throw away from the sea and the fishing fleet of Hastings, it would be sacrilege to go anywhere else other than a seafood.
As the name suggests, situated directly under the East Hill cliffs opposite the Blue Reef aquarium you will find Undercliffe House. A fish & seafood led restaurant that is renowned for its freshness and quality of dishes. The café that pre-existed was acquired by the current owner in 2003 and by 2008 in support for the local fishing fleet, was converted to the specialist seafood restaurant that you will find today.
All of the fish and seafood served is acquired fresh and daily from a local supplier R/X Fisheries. There is zero farmed fish on the menu and they will always stock Local South Coast sourced catch when available. The menu is well put together and offers a good selection of set dishes along with daily specials, non-fish and a children’s menu.
The main draw for me was the specials board. Being quite literally on the beachfront you are able to see the black cloaks of the Net Shops and the Fish Market from the doorstep. I’m not sure you can get more authenticity and promise of fresh produce from many other places not only in the area but the whole of the UK. Seeing what special daily catch has come straight from the boat and into the kitchen left me wanting to sample this menu.
A real standout of the meal for me was the roasted Turbot, served in a lemon, butter & caper sauce with Pommes Purée & Spinach. This dish truly was a delight, one of the most tastiest and fresh fish meals I’ve ever had the pleasure of eating and I was not shy to admit this. Presented beautifully on the plate its obvious what care and attention goes into each meal served from the kitchen here. Owner and cook Andy Manning clearly has the eye and knowledge on how a fish should be cooked and delivered to the table. Working in the kitchen along side Andy is chef Ionut-Adrian Argint who relocated to Hastings from London having worked in a number of well-known kitchens he brings a wealth of experience to Undercliffe House.
We are very excited to share our experience of our day at Undercliffe House and we highly recommend that anyone visiting the area takes a stroll along to see Andy and his team who will accommodate you to the highest of standards.
Undercliffe House, 27 Rock-a-Nore Rd, Hastings