The Channel Islands may not be the first place that comes to mind when one thinks of fine dining establishments. However, Jersey nurtures it’s fair share of award-winning and Michelin Star establishments. Here are three of our favourites:
The atmosphere in Ormer is one of intimate fine dining, with it’s soft lighting and stylish decor.
Ormer offers guests everything from light and affordable breakfast and bunch menus (available on Monday-Friday & Saturdays respectively) to a £130 Tasting Menu with a complementing Wine Flight.
On the standard a la carte menu, you can expect quality ingredients cooked to an accomplished standard. Among the starters, you’ll find dishes like Jersey Lobster Ravioli with ginger, coriander, crab and tomato bisque, or Tuna Tartare with dashi, ponzu soy gel, apple and miso. Further down the menu, you might be tempted to try the Duck with Caper and raisin puree & a foie gras sauce, or Belly Pork with chorizo and tomato puree, pressed Asian pear, grilled scallops and chorizo jam. Finish off your meal with a Tangerine Baked Alaska and your in for an evening of gastronomic delight.
During our visit, we chose to try to tasting menu with accompanying wine flight. We were dining during Shaun Rankin’s time as Head Chef and so we can’t vouch for the current standards of the tasting menu. However, we enjoyed several outstanding plates of food, including Pancetta Wrapped Rabbit Loin, a Heritage Tomato Salad and a Rhubarb & Ginger Panna Cotta.
While guests can enjoy a relatively affordable brunch menu at Ormer, dinner doesn’t come cheap. Most la carte dishes average around £30 (with the notable except of Cote Du Beouf, which is £80 between two). We don’t really see why you’d be dining at Ormer if you didn’t want to make the most of the setting and think that the menu is worth the price tag if you’re looking to immerse yourself in the experience. Alternatively, if you’re in a hurry, Ormer offers an Express Lunch, which is advertised as ‘One Dish, One Wine, One Hour’ and is priced at £19.
Needless to say, we passed on the express menu.
When we visited last year, the talented Shaun Rankin was still at the helm of the Ormer’s kitchen. Back then, we felt that the food was truly exceptional. However, Rankin has since moved on from the establishment so we can’t say for certain that the quality of the food remains consistent. That being said, the service and the atmosphere in the restaurant was also exceptional and subsequent reviews appear to confirm that Ormer continues to deserve its excellent reputation. Without a doubt, a foodie weekend in Jersey would not be complete without a trip to Ormer.
Read our full length review of Shaun Rankin’s Tasting Menu in 2017
Ocean @ The Atlantic Jersey
We really liked the look and feel of the Ocean. It’s interiors are inspired by it’s coastal setting and the whole establishment exudes a real grown-up elegance. Shades of blues, whites and beige create an overall classic-yet-contemporary finish, while hand-crafted furniture, specially commissioned artwork and white colonial style shutters frame exceptional views of the gardens and ocean beyond.
Executive chef Will Holland is responsible for creating the Ocean’s menu, which includes seasonal a la carte offerings, as well as a daily-changing market menu and specially crafted vegetarian dishes. Working with a network of local island producers, Holland is committed to using only the best Jersey ingredients and freshest produce.
An example of a typical Market Menu dish includes Freshly rolled tagliatelle with wild mushroom fricassee; while the evening a la carte might tempt you to order the Tandoori-roast Monkfish Tail or the Juniper Roasted Venison Loin.
The food is not as refined as that which we experienced at Ormer or Bohemia, however it was still very enjoyable and we dined on
Ocean is arguably one of the more affordable fine dining lunchtime establishments in Jersey, with a two-course lunch priced at £20 and a three-course Sunday Lunch offered for £30. Granted, this still isn’t exactly wallet friendly, but fine dining never comes cheap (the clue is in the name). Prices get a little steeper on an evening and while Ocean doesn’t offer a tasting menu, a three-course dinner from the a la carte menu will set you back £65 per person.
The Ocean is a beautiful restaurant with lovely attentive staff. This, combined with good food and a relaxing atmosphere elevated it to our top three Jersey restaurants and it’s well worth a visit if you’re planning on being on the island any time soon. Holland is clearly an accomplished chef and you’re guaranteed to be in safe hands.
Bohemia Bar and Restaurant
Bohemia is a beautifully designed restaurant that seamlessly blends the contemporary with the traditional. The staff are polite & attentive and the atmosphere feels warm while still exemplifying what it means to be a fine dining establishment. The restaurant really comes into it’s own on an evening, when white tablecloths and soft pendant lighting beautifully showcase chef’s food and enhance the intimate dining experience.
Bohemia is by far one of the most refined and accommodating establishments we have ever eaten in. Not only does it offer a ‘Classic Dinner Menu’ – containing dishes such as Belted Galloway Tartare, Lamb Loin & Braised Neck and ‘Veal Textures’ – but it also offers a wide variety of seven course tasting menus. There’s a Vegetarian Menu, offering dishes such as Slow Cooked Bantam Egg, and even a Pescatarian Menu, which includes Jersey Oysters and Local Crab Tart.
When we dined at Bohemia, we decided to try the standard Chefs Tasting Menu. Everything, from the freshly baked bread selected to the Oyster Cassonade and Belted Galloway Sirloin was delicious and we can’t help but feel that the tasting menus are the only real way to experience what Bohemia has to offer.
Once again, you’ll have to part with some of your hard earned cash to enjoy a spectacular dinner at Bohemia. The ‘classic dinner menu’ is priced at £65; while the 7 course tasting menu is £79 a head. If you’re feeling a touch more adventurous, you can also opt to enjoy a Surprise Dinner Menu for just £49, which will contain 6 courses that will not be revealed until they arrive at your table.
Head Chef Steve Smith is truly accomplished and his outstanding food has earned its place in our ‘Top Ten Meals’ of all time. We heartily recommend that you book your table at Bohemia if you’re going to be in Jersey. Simply sit back with a drink and allow the talented kitchen team to deliver course after course of flavoursome and stunningly presented food.