Review – The Jetty Christchurch

Delish dishes with one of Christchurch’s finest views.

My Wife and I visited the Jetty this weekend as a surprise for our 1st wedding anniversary.  On arrival we were warmly greeted and taken to our table placed at the front of the restaurant, which has the most beautiful views over the Christchurch harbour, I can’t do it justice by writing about it really so just take my word (or look it up on google).

Unfortunately, it was a little colder on the day so were unable to dine outside but if you are lucky enough to have the weather on your side, I would one thousand percent recommend booking to dine outside as the view hugely compliments the whole experience.

Even though we were seated inside, it was not a let down in any shape or form as the view still added to the overall experience.

I felt the initial service to be a bit rushed as we offered drinks before even had a chance to relax or the opportunity to view the wine list.  We were then asked if we were ready to order shortly after the drinks arriving; the restaurant was extremely busy so maybe they were hoping to have us out sooner rather than later.

However, the vibe was really great as mentioned, the restaurant was packed, we saw that the main man Alex Aitken was behind the bar keeping check on things which was great to see and after speaking with the Manager, he said it’s a regular occurrence.

The staff did seem a little stretched but none the less managed to pull it all off and all of our food service and turnaround didn’t seem to be affected, and I wouldn’t say we were left waiting for dishes any longer than normal.

The standard a la carte menu has a huge selection to suit every palate, even for those of you not fond of seafood.  Along with this, there is also a fine choice of options offered on the daily catch menu or you can choose the tasting menu!

As a pre starter snack we opted to try some of the cockle popcorn which you have to have (trust me I could have eaten a bucket of that stuff!), along with some tempura oysters, very small but very tasty, and then the triple fish taco selection which I can’t stop thinking about, especially the scallop and blood sausage one which literally melted in my mouth!

Put it this way if I was local I’d hit the Jetty up for those tacos and cockle popcorn at least once a month, if not more…

For starters we opted for Steamed Asian Style Minced Shrimp and Pork Dumplings, served with soy and a pineapple salsa along with Seared Scallops and Spiced Chicken Wings, with salted mango and a hot and sour sauce.

Both of the dishes were presented well and the flavours again were incredible, to the point that if I had the money I’d have ordered thirds of both… I don’t think I stopped saying a selection of expletives and mmmmm noises for the whole period of eating them both.

For our Main courses we had the Trout selected from the catch of the day, served on a beurre blanc and shrimp sauce seasoned with lots of dill; this was perfectly cooked and well-seasoned along with a deliciously crispy skin.

Then from the main menu we had the Butter Poached Cod served with a shellfish broth (mussels and clams) and crab dumplings.  The only issue we had was that the crab dumplings were unfortunately way, way too salty but had they not been, the concept and flavours would have been a perfect paring.  Post meal we did mention this to the waiting staff and we were very kindly were offered free dessert wine as a compensation.

We then finished up with the dessert of Iced Honey and Hazelnut Parfait with toffee popcorn crunch and salted caramel sauce, along with the two complementary glasses of the Château Fayau Cadillac Bordeaux France 2011, which with this dessert was a delight to drink and if I was not so full I would have gone another round.

I know Alex has opened multiple Jetty restaurants across the country and our closest is Brighton but based on the fact this is the original and it has won several awards we had to make the pilgrimage to put it to the test.    (I think that this was his original, but might be worth checking….)

Would I go again?

Without any question of a doubt yes I would.  I will be trying out the Brighton Jetty when time and funds permit and I hope that it is just as good.

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