The Tavern - East Ferry. Excellent food in a lovely waterside setting
The stove was on and the welcome (from Sarah) was warm too when we arrived for a midweek meal at The Tavern East Ferry. There’s a line of fairly large windows here looking out over the water and the one opposite us was perhaps the largest.
The only thing missing was the sun but no doubt that will have its days here in this picturesque setting in the backwaters of Cork Harbour. It is, by the way, just a few minutes from Midleton (take the Whitegate Road and look out for the ground-level East Ferry sign on the right between Ballinacurra and Saleen).
Had a good look at the menu - at present the offering is the same from opening until closing time. It was mid-afternoon and we were hungry enough for dinner. They had a couple of sharing plates, a Soup of the Day, a Chowder, Mushroom and Goats Cheese Bruschetta and a tempting Little Aubergine Parmigiana.
But, being by the water, we were inclined to go for the shellfish starters. CL was very impressed with the Mussel A la Marinara. That was served with a top notch homemade tomato sauce with a pinch of garlic and chilli.
Meanwhile I was very much enjoying my Prawns that came with the same superb tomato sauce. And the delicious breads that come with each of these dishes have also visited the grill!
That grill is key here, especially in the hands of Chef Cristian. I was always going to have a steak, especially after seeing their meat ageing in the cabinets by the bar.
The meat is sourced from O’Farrell Meats in Midleton and is matured in-house on Himalayan salt blocks (for a minimum of 21 days). You may pick your steak from the cabinet or just order your rib-eye, stripling or fillet.
I choose the ribeye and wasn’t at all disappointed. On the contrary, it is perhaps one of the very best I’ve come across in recent months, tender and full of flavour and served with grilled mushroom (absolutely outstanding), house salad, chips and a choice of sauces (my pick was the peppercorn). Happy out! They also have quite a choice of burgers and a Kids Menu.
And more choices on the A La Carte: chicken, duck, lamb, pork and salads. And fish of course. The Cod dish with its Madagascar Sauce and Roasted cauliflower, some green beans too, was another to write home about, really top class, the expertly cooked fish enhanced by the slightly spicy Madagascar sauce that also added colour. Two really highly recommended dishes for you!
The dessert menu was on a board and we had a choice of four, all tempting: Warm Apple Crumble, Chocolate Fudge, Blackcurrant and Prosecco Cheesecake and Carrot Cake. Loved the crumble with its bite-sized chunks of fruit while the Blackcurrant and Prosecco certainly lifted the cheesecake out of the usual.
No doubt the menus will change as the season gets into full swing. Then the stove will no longer glow, hopefully replaced by the sun, and you’ll have a choice of going outside to two “roofed” facilities that overlook the waters, the boats coming and going and the casual sailors coming to land as customers of the Tavern (which has a full bar).
See The Tavern website here.
And stay up to date at their Facebook page