36-28 The Boardwalk, Port Solent, Portsmouth, PO6 4TP
The Watermark is a must for those who enjoy outstanding food and drink before donning their dancing shoes. The smart business furnishings create a relaxed atmosphere, with the menu putting a sophisticated take on home-cooked food. From the delicious slow-cooked shoulder of lamb to the ocean sharing platter, there really is something for everyone.
Watermark’s head chef Ian Buzzard has been cooking great British cuisine at the Port Solent restaurant since 2011.
Originally from Birmingham, Ian spent a decade as a chef in the Royal Navy.
Inspired to get into the cooking industry by his grandmothers, Ian says that life at the Watermark gets better every single day.
He said: ‘‘Everything is going really well for us at the moment.
‘‘We have started doing more private functions and that has been hugely successful so far.
‘‘We’ve got a wedding coming up in the next few weeks and have done a baptism celebration recently as well.
‘‘It is great fun to cook for these events – where we’re not a chain restaurant we are able to adapt the food we serve to whoever walks through the door.’’
The past 12 months have seen Ian and his team of chefs build upon the pre-existing menu – with subtle improvements to what they already serve up.
Ian said: ‘‘What we try to do is create good quality home-cooked food – the sort of thing you could have at a family meal but cooked to perfection.
‘‘We use the freshest ingredients and make almost all of the food from scratch, which I am really proud of.
‘‘You won’t see things like lobster thermador served here; it’s more like fish and chips and slow-cooked lamb shoulder.
‘‘It’s what our customers want and so that’s what we want to cook for them.
‘‘At the moment my favourite dish on our menu is the ocean sharing platter; that comes with haddock, cod fillets, whole king prawns and mussels.’’
With the summer looking good, Ian’s focus is starting to shift to the tail end of the year.
He said: ‘‘We’re now working on our autumn and new year menus – but I’m afraid I can’t give away any secrets yet!’’