Although Brighton and Hove form one city together, Hove is often overlooked for the bigger, more popular Brighton. However, leave the Brighton lanes to come over to Hove and you’ll discover it has some of the best restaurants in the county; we pick the 10 must-trys in this seaside town.
The Farm Tavern is a cosy little pub located on Farm Road, close to the Brighton/Hove border. Recently refurbished, the Farm has the typical pub vibe you’re looking for; crackling wood fires, exposed brick walls, and a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Great food is served throughout the week, and for just £10.50 you can have an absolutely huge roast with all your favourites. The Farm Tavern also has a delicious vegetarian nut roast option; roasted cashew, vine tomato and spinach nut roast, with a veggie gravy, all for only a tenner. The Farm Tavern also happily caters their food to coeliacs, vegans or any of those with a special dietary need. The staff really make the Farm Tavern what it is, the service is quick and efficient, and they are always happy to help.
The Ginger Pig, or ‘The Pig’, is a firm favourite in Hove, having won Best Pub Food in the Brighton & Hove Food Awards three years running. This modern pub serves up traditional English food with high quality local ingredients from around Sussex. You’ll find beautifully cooked steaks, sky high burgers, and locally caught fish on the menu. The Ginger Pig also has an extensive cocktail menu, adding its own individual twist to the classics such as the Hove Cosmopolitan, or the House Daiquiri. You’ll find the atmosphere differs quite a lot at the Pig depending on when you visit, with more families visiting in the afternoon at the weekend, and an older, business crowd dining during the weekday evenings.
The Little Fish Market is a fishmonger-turned-restaurant on Upper Market Street. Owner Duncan Ray is also the sole chef and focuses on delivering high-quality fish using local Sussex produce and ingredients. The menu changes daily depending on what’s in season and what the local fishermen catch, but you can always be sure of having a beautifully presented and cooked dish. You’ll usually find such dishes as lobster, monk fish, seabass and salmon, with perfectly paired side dishes. The wine list is also created to compliment the dishes on the menu, both by Ray himself, and a specialist at Hennings Wine Merchants.
You’ll find Makara in the heart of Hove, serving traditional Mediterranean and Turkish food. There is a large selection of dishes on the menu from Ali Nazik (tender lamb on pureed aubergine with yoghurt, salad and rice) to warming casseroles such as the Tavuk Guvec (chicken, mushrooms, and peppers cooked in white wine, tomato sauce, and cream). If you’re finding it difficult to choose, share the Makara Kebab platter with some friends, where you can sample a mix of the grilled meats such as lamb Kofte, lam shish and chicken sish. There’s a great range of starters at Makara too, many of them vegetarian, and all served with freshly homemade Turkish bread. You’ll also enjoy a complimentary homemade dessert after your meal.
Archipelagosis a popular Greek restaurant situated on Western Road. The inside of the restaurant is nicely but simply decorated, and there is always a lively atmosphere with large numbers of people enjoying their meal. There is limited seating outside too, so on a sunny day it’s lovely to enjoy your meze out in the sun. The meze dishes are the best way to experience Archipelagos; this is where you can get lots of smaller dishes to share, and is a great way to try a variety of Greek dishes. The mezes are quite large, so you’ll only need three or four between two people, depending on your appetite. Try dishes like pitakia (cheese/spinach pie), dolmadakia (stuffed vine leaves), and larger ones such as moussaka, or mydopilafo. The staff at Archipelagos work quickly yet always have time to chat to customers, and are great for recommending dishes.
Seasons Italian Restaurant is on the edge of the Hove border, and serves up traditional Italian cuisine. This family run restaurant has a very friendly and relaxed atmosphere, and is popular with families and groups. The inside of Seasons is simple but elegant with a black and white colour scheme. The menu offers a range of traditional Italian dishes such as pizza, pasta, chicken, and fish. There’s also a good selection of vegetarian dishes, and many dishes can be made gluten free on request. The Seasons also has extremely friendly and chatty staff, and you’ll always receive a warm welcome when you dine there.
Rootcandi is the sister restaurant of well-known Iydea in Brighton. Located on the Brighton/Hove border, above the Iydea branch on Western Road, it is the UK’s first vegan tapas restaurant. It is a must-visit not just for vegans, but those who are looking for something a little different. Created by Steve Billam, Rootcandi was a response to the lack of vegan options in most other restaurants, and an opportunity for chef Reuben Waller to flex his creative muscles. The tapas menu is divided into three sets: the Preston menu has influences from South America, the Stanmer menu from modern-European cuisine, and finally Queens which is pan-Asian inspired. Each set serves two and is priced individually, and all the dishes in each set have been carefully selected to best compliment each other. If you want to mix and match though, you can choose those dishes which sound the best to you, and create your own menu.
Looks like it's closedHours or services may be impacted due to Covid-19
A new comer to Hove, the Market is from the same team behind Graze, and has the look and feel of a market inside, with green Victorian tiles, darker lighting, and the large Market sign adorning the front, an original from Camden market. The Market has retained Graze’s eccentricity with animal portraits on the wall, and an open kitchen where you can watch your food being prepared. Diners are encouraged to order a range of small, tapas-like dishes to share, ordering meals from the different parts of the menu: ‘from the green grocer’, ‘from the fish monger’, and ‘from the butcher’. The Market is the perfect blend of relaxed dining and high quality dishes.
You’ll find the Urchin, a popular seafood and shellfish restaurant, on Belfast Street in Hove. This is a stylish and newly renovated pub, with a cosy Urchin and a nautical theme, with dark grey walls, lengths of rope, and dim lighting. The seafood is some of the best catch from Brighton’s coastline, all freshly cooked in the kitchen. The menu is simple, and written on blackboards in the pub. You’ll find a good range of fish on the menu such as crab cakes, scallops, prawns, and lobster. The menu can vary between the times you go, and the chef is always trying new and exciting dishes and flavours. The Urchin does lack a dessert menu, but you can finish off your meal with a cheese board and real ale chutney. Beer enthusiasts will love the Urchin too with over 100 to choose from.
The Gingerman is the flagship restaurant of the Gingerman group, a collection of restaurants owned by Ben McKellar, also owner of the Ginger Pig. This small restaurant is right on the Brighton/Hove border, and offers fine dining without any pretension. The menu at The Gingerman is small, but all courses have been carefully created to offer a beautiful blend of flavours. Try the Assiette of Beef with goats cheese crumb, caramelised carrots, and truffle pomme purée. The starters and desserts are equally as tempting, and all dishes are well presented. The Gingerman itself is a cosy restaurant with a simple yet elegant design; there is exposed brickwork on the walls and it feels light despite the large number of diners. The prices at The Gingerman are reasonable too, given that the food served is top notch, and the service very friendly.