01908 397 888
5 Mortimer Square, The Hub, Milton Keynes, MK9 2FB
There was a stunning ambience as soon as we walked through the doors to enjoy some ‘Caribbean social’. To say Turtle Bay was ‘buzzing’ would be an understatement. You can feel the energy. This is a great place to escape and unwind. We felt like we were on holiday and it wasn’t even the weekend!
We made our way to the attractive beach hut bar before taking our seats for dinner. I was in the mood for a drink and took advantage of the 2-4-1 on cocktails, opting for the classic that is Mojito. This is where I sensed a touch of irony. This is a drink I have enjoyed all over the world. Yet I don’t remember enjoying a Mojito as much as this one, right here in The Hub.
Where everything is so appealing
We took our seats and spent some considerable time making our choices. This was simply because we found everything on the menu so appealing. We also took time to look around and enjoy the atmosphere which is further enhanced by the open kitchen.
The starters are inspired by beach shack and street vendors across the Caribbean islands. My choice to begin was the Jerk Glazed Pit Ribs. 24 hour marinated, grilled baby back pork ribs, served with a fresh watermelon, lime & green herb chow with a classic jerk glaze. The ribs only needed the slightest of nudges with my knife and they fell apart. There was so much meat on just a few ribs I began to worry whether I would be able to eat all of my main course. They possess an abundance of flavour. The jerk glaze had formed a crispy layer to the ribs which were extremely tender. This was a lovely introduction to food at Turtle Bay.
Authentic – no doubt about it
Many restaurants can claim to serve food that is of the same taste and quality from where it originated. Having visited Jamaica, I can testify the dishes at Turtle Bay are most definitely authentic.
A great choice
It is rare indeed that I would struggle to make a decision about what to eat for main course. My problem? I loved the sound of all the choices from the Beach Salads section of the menu. The same applied to all of the burgers and buns, the Jerk Pit BBQ dishes and also the One Pots. The simple solution was to ask my waiter to suggest something for me. She duly obliged and recommended I try the Trinidad Chicken and Coconut Curry. Chicken breast slowly simmered with coconut milk, fresh mango & coconut, Caribbean spices, garlic, scotch bonnet, served with coconut rice ‘n’ peas & roti flatbread.
This was a great choice and it was impossible to fault. As the pot arrived our waiter removed the lid to reveal a great looking curry. I was greeted with the most irresistible aromas. With each bite I enjoyed an array of different spices and flavours. The mango adds even more variety to the curry and works superbly well with the tender chicken. The rice too was beautiful. In Guyana the scotch bonnet is called the ball-of-fire pepper. It certainly gave this dish some heat – which if anything, helped to elevate the flavours. Perfect!
After our main courses my guest opted for a glass of coke. This was another example of how Turtle Bay can turn something supposedly basic and present it in a unique fashion. If you haven’t visited this restaurant yet, we’ll leave it to you to find out what they do. It’s the small, clever touches like this that show their attention to detail, thought and sheer passion for food and drink. It’s this passion that makes Turtle Bay such a marvellous and hugely popular venue.
Both my guest and I were now incredibly full when we were presented with the Pudding menu. We were not too sure if we could eat any more. However, for you, the reader, we opted to share the Banana & Toffee Cheesecake. Triple layered cheesecake with crispy biscuit base, creamy soft cheese, banana & toffee. The cheesecake was lighter than expected, almost airy, and extremely pleasurable! I totally adored the biscuit base too and this dessert goes down in our book as a true favourite.
Our review was conducted mid-week. We strongly suggest that you book in advance to avoid disappointment.
Like cocktails? Read our feature on Bar Manager Tom Swain by clicking here
Want to know more about Turtle Bay? Visit their website www.turtlebay.co.uk