I was very happy to award a 5-star ranking to this restaurant on our previous visit. This time we visited for dinner on a Tuesday night with two friends and were disappointed overall with the fare provided. We began, as before, with a parmesan biscuit and home-made rosemary flavoured crisps. The biscuits had an excellent texture, with a full cheese flavour. The crisps were too salty. The second amuse-bouche was some small cherry bread rolls, to be dipped in an oil (probably rape-seed oil). The rolls were somewhat hard, not perfectly fresh. The starters were OK - two of us chose the lamb kofta (£8), two a cooked goat's cheese (£6) on salad. The wines were excellent. I had a very tasty 175 ml rioja (£8.50), with a fine purple colour. Others enjoyed their sauvignon blanc (£7). Two of us continued with pheasant breast (£22). The meat was tender and tasty enough, as was the root vegetable puree. A large tranche of unexceptional and plainly cooked cabbage lay under the two pieces of meat. The thin carrots had a gelatinous texture; it was not clear how they had been cooked. The top decoration was of peashoots. These have a delicious taste when fresh - one of my favourites. On this occasion they were beginning to turn yellow and had no flavour whatsoever. One diner chose the plaice (£17), which had a salad accompaniment including some raw ginger which was overpowering next to a delicate piece of fish. My wife chose the wild mushroom stroganov (£16), which was OK although the underlying rice had no mushroom flavour; the mushrooms were placed on top. All in all, the quality of the main courses was not close to the excellent fare that we had enjoyed on a previous visit. They did not justify the price charged. It We ordered some desserts and the waiter then asked if we would also like some coffees. We ordered these too but were surprised when they were served some 5 minutes before the desserts. As I see it, coffees (£3.50 and £4.00) should not be served until the desserts have been finished. I would have requested this explicitly, had I known that they would do otherwise. Well, it is an attractive restaurant, pleasantly situated in a yacht harbour (Shamrock Quay), but we were disappointed on this visit.
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