Whitstable, Part II

The sky may look blue, but it sure is cold and windy on the seafront! After our lunch on the Harbour we had a look around Whistable Harbour Village - a collection of hut shops which sell arts, crafts and food. I had been told by friends that I would love the independent shops that Whistable has to offer but, I have to confess, both the Harbour Village and the shops on Harbour Street really underwhelmed me. Maybe it was just the stock they had in but, unusually, I came away from Whitstable without something to remind of the place. I couldn't even find a thimble, something I always buy whenever I visit a new place. 

Still, at least the scenery is pretty. After walking up and down the seafront we headed to Whitstable Castle for afternoon tea. It's not a touristy castle - you can't just turn up and expect to look around. You need to book in advance if you would like a guided tour of the interior. You can of course go for afternoon tea or enjoy the gardens without booking so do visit, even if you don't get the full tour.

In the evening after watching another fine sunset, we headed to The Pearson's Arms by Richard Phillips for my birthday dinner. This was by far the best meal we had in Whitstable - you definitely do need to book in advance for this place! If you can, book a table around sunset time and ask for a window table - we thought of this *after* we'd watched the sunset freezing on the beach and then headed inside for dinner. Doh!

For £110 (with service), we both enjoyed three courses and another bottle of Kentish wine. Richard Phillips started off his career at Le Gavroche and has won various accolades so we knew we were going to be in for something special. To start I had the asparagus with a duck fried egg and garlic butter sauce; Olly had the crab salad. My main was a mouth-watering wild boar dish whilst Olly opted for their rib eye steak; for dessert he went for their cheesecake whilst I had a chocolate, hazelnut and After Eight terrine with honeycomb ice cream and caramel sauce. Divine!

I don't think we'll return to Whitstable any time soon but we did have an enjoyable weekend there celebrating my birthday. Have you been? What's your favourite seaside town? x

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