Norwich – Turtle Bay

I used to really like Turtle Bay, but the quality seemed to slide a bit in 2019, but I’m hopeful that things are improving once again. The reviews of the Norwich outlet are still holding up, there are a few negatives, but nothing which suggests any serious problems.

Anyway, I hadn’t planned on going back in the near future, but just before Christmas, Turtle Bay sent a lot of people with the app £10 off their meal or drinks. When I was away in Poland, there was an update from the app suggesting that I use it for a £10 lunch deal, with no minimum purchase. So, since the offer was running until the middle of February, I thought that I should make the most of it.

The welcome was efficient and polite, with the staff member confirming that there was no minimum purchase with my voucher, I thought that it was best to double check. I went for the drink of the home-made fizzy mango, served in a bottle with an elastic band around it. It was a generous portion, consisting of mango, lemon juice and grapefruit crush. I got quite a taste of thick mango essence towards the bottom, since neither I nor the restaurant had stirred the drink particularly well. However, it tasted fine.

The lunch menu gives a choice of a burger or roti, a side and a soft drink for £10. The pulled chicken roti was fine, the chicken was tender, the avocado was soft and there were some pleasant flavours. The chips also had a little spice to them, but even as part of the lunch deal, the pricing is still a little punchy for the amount of food. If ordered in the evening, this would have cost nearer £15 for the three component parts, and I’m not sure that’s particularly good value for money.

One element that moderately surprises me is that they’re not pushing their core dishes at lunch-time, the offer is limited to burgers and rotis. I’d rather they’d offered something such as jerk chicken, or one of the curries, even at a lower price, to get a little taste of the Caribbean. I thought that I was more getting the taste of Dudley, nothing wrong with it, but there was no elements of surprise with the tastes and textures. I didn’t work out what was in that little dish, but I did liven up the proceedings by adding sauce to everything.

The service was effortlessly polite throughout, the restaurant was clean (other than the sauce bottles hadn’t been cleaned) and the environment was relaxed and comfortable. I can’t much complain about anything as the restaurant had given me the entire meal for free as part of their app deal, but I still can’t help missing Turtle Bay’s meals of old which were packed with tastes and flavours.