I was in Brixton one weekend watching a local Volleyball tournament which took place at the local Recreation Centre. Having worked a major appetite watching people do exercise and competing in high-intensity matches for 2hours, I was excited to join one of the teams for some Caribbean food at a Turtle Bay restaurant located within a short walk from the centre.
Food - 7.5/10
Ambiance - 8/10
Service - 6/10
Value for Money - 7/10
Turtle Bay offers a great array of Caribbean food and has an excellent bar centred in the middle of the restaurant. Be sure to look out for their 241 happy hour times.
Price range: ££
Telephone: 020 7737 2264
Address: 382-384, Brixton Rd, Ferndale, London SW9 7AW
Nearest Station: Brixton
There were 16 of us in total, and the staff at Turtle Bay were gracious enough to let us have the entire back segment of the restaurant to ourselves, letting us arrange the tables to how we see fit, which was super helpful.
Most of Turtle Bay starters will cost you £5.50 (with some dishes accompanied by a £1 – £2 additional surcharges) but they do offer multi deals, so you can buy three starters for £15, four for £19 or five for £23. We opted for the three starter deal. We ordered the Jamaican Patties which are tasty traditional hand-crimped patty with mixed vegetables; Jerk Pit Wings which are grilled and glazed with Jerk Gravy and a Garlic Flatbread which comes with Scotch Bonnet Butter, Wild Rockets and Chilli Flakes.
There was some confusion when the food was delivered, which is common given the size of our party. The waiting staff were quick to apologise for the mix-up and we eventually received the Garlic Flatbread but at the very end of the meal.
I ordered the Browned Chicken Stew with a side of Plantain. The dish was a colourful one, served with tender Chicken Thighs, simmered in allspice, thyme, fresh lime, garlic coconut rice and peas. There is a lot going on in this dish and I was interested to see how the different flavours and textures would work together and I was pleasantly surprised. The chicken was succulent and smothered in jerk which went down very well. Now I don’t believe I have ever had coconut rice in the past (coconut rice it is typically made from rice being cooked in coconut milk and combined with shredded coconut); and it is something I will definitely be looking for again, it has most of the qualities of regular rice but it provides a refreshing taste to the pallet which I very much enjoyed.
This Turtle Bay in Brixton is a very large establishment and makes for a great place for large party gatherings as well as small, but I do have to knock off a few points for the service. Although the staff were friendly and helpful, there were far too many mistakes when it came to food and drink orders, which tended to interrupt our social gathering as we spent time figuring why a drink has come to a table that no one ordered or why someones main was missing. I am sure with a smaller group this wouldn’t be a problem, but with a restaurant as this large as this I did see lots of other large groups and I wondered if they faced similar issues.
Turtle Bay offers an excellent menu, with lots of dishes to choose from, It offers probably one of the most colourful dishes in terms of flavour and types of food that I have seen in any restaurant.
Sadly, due to an issue with my phone, I did lose some photos from my visit, hence why some dishes mentioned in my review were not indexed with an image :(.