Friday, 28 February 2014

Castletown (IOM) Photo-Set

The following is a photo-set of images taken on or around New Year's Eve 2013. Some of the pictures were snapped by myself, others by the bespectacled chap in the portrait below, R.A.P. Neither of us can recall exactly who took which, with one or two obvious exceptions.

[Image description: the police-station]

[Image description: my chums in another local]

[Image description: night-time view of the harbour]

[Image description: Castle Rushen]

[Image description: an aspect at the 'bus-stop]

[Image description: the shore]

[Image description: access to the shore]

[Image description: various shots of the quay]

[Image description: seaweed tossed onto the quayside]

[Image description: the writer wrapped up and
attempting to remain standing using two walking-sticks (canes)]

[Image description: the river-mouth]

[Image description: R.A.P., the lighthouse-keeper]

[Image description: Christmas-lights in Market Square]

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

The Garrison, Castletown, IOM: Review

We managed, despite deflection from the managers of our accommodation, to secure a table on New Year’s Eve at The Garrison restaurant. Mind, the slot was for very early doors! We were the first customers of the evening. However, this actually suited our plans as we had arranged to meet chums in The Union pub for the end-of-year celebrations.

As can be seen from the photographs below, the furnishings and décor are fairly austere; but the ambience was welcoming and warm (as was the temperature). Our hostess, the proprietrix, dressed all glam and with newly coiffed hair-do, did everything she could to ensure a good time was to be had. The food did not fail to impress either.

To start we ordered a round of apéritifs and a dish of toasted almonds liberally tossed in sea-salt and black pepper. They were so moreish that I forgot to take a snap until they were all but gone!

We decided - after personal recommendation from the restaurateuse - upon a Rioja from Arjona, 2012, to accompany our various selections. It transpired that this went well with our shared starters such as the deep-fried octopus (below).

The delicious wine also partnered well our various main courses (entrées): pasta dishes; Tex-Mex; and, my rather succulent (if slightly chewy - but that’s the luck of the draw with rib-eye!) steak. The lesson I learned from this is not to order rib-eye “bleu”; sirloin and fillet, no problem; but the veins of fat in rib-eye need a tad more cooking or the steak needs to be tenderised.

A bottle of Castell d’Olerdola was delivered in an ice-bucket to accompany desserts, cheese and our toasts. It is is a fruity pink fizz that is sure to go down well at any party; it assuredly assisted our festive mood!

Actually, no-one wanted dessert as my companions felt so full after starters and mains. Naturally, this cheese-lover had to have his fix, so requested the cheese platter, nothing of which remained barring a few crumbs and the grape stalk (see below).

The alimentation served at The Garrison is certainly not haute cuisine; but of its type, it is well sourced, well cooked, well prepared, well presented, and tasty. Prices are reasonable and appropriate for the standard and quality.

[Image description: the menu with prices]

Just do not order the coffee - it tastes of dish-water; the only comestible to be avoided! (It is possible someone omitted to rinse the coffee cups after washing!)

Nonetheless, I certainly recommend The Garrison restaurant and hope to dine there again in the not-too-distant future.