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“How the Other Half Live”
Review of The Cliff

The Cliff
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$0 - US$300
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Business meetings, Special Occasion Dining, Romantic
Dining options: Lunch, After-hours, Breakfast, Dinner, Delivery, Reservations
Description: Open 6 days a week from December to May and June to November, Monday to Saturday. Office Hours 9 am to 5 pm.
Reviewed 24 June 2014

We were staying all inclusive elsewhere and had already eaten out twice so we were uncertain whether to try The Cliff. However it was my birthday and our last night and another couple at the hotel said it was "Awesome location, awesome food, awesome price." so we decided to give it a go. Puzzlingly they only take telephone bookings and then only between 9.00 am and 5.00 pm. They did however email our hotel back to confirm the booking and let us know they would charge your credit card if we didn't turn up.

The place looks plain from the outside but once you get in its very special. Set on a small narrow sand beach at the end of a rocky cove the L shaped building tumbles down to the sea. At night it was lit by large gas roman torches and the edge of the sea is lit up. You can see fish including a largish ray swimming by slowly. Its magical.

The top level is a large bar/lounge. The drinks service (G&T + Campari & soda) was efficient but surprisingly we didn't get given a menu until we descended to our table on the main restaurant at terrace level. There are a few intermediate levels with no direct sea frontage but with tables and ceiling fans which on a hot humid June evening is a real bonus.

They have a reasonably extensive menu of starters and mains about half of each are specials. There is no option other than a two course meal at BB$246 each (about £77 each). Deserts are BB$ 50 each extra. As you would expect there is a decent wine list with a reasonable choice of affordable wines as well as some wallet busters. We has a bottle of Kim Crawford SB 2013 for BB$90 and a glass of house shiraz for BB$20. Wine/water service was good and prompt keeping glasses well filled.

We chose open shrimp ravioli and lobster linguini as starters and grilled barracuda and beef tender loin as mains. The lobster linguini was the best dish with well balanced flavours. The shrimp and barracuda were OK but not memorable The beef tender loin was just OK ( I can do far better at home according to my wife). The desert was up to the standard of the linguini and they also did a nicely decorated plate with a mini (thimble) sized cake for my birthday

Back up to the lounge for a small beer and a Zacapa 23 year old rum and a bill (with a voluntary 10% service) of BB$840. When they said it was awesome they were right on two out of the three counts. Despite its reputation and own brand posh recipe book the food was a disappointment.

It wasn't bad or badly present it was just not very ambitious by present day British standards. I would definitely have put it below Michelin 1 star standard and probably just scrape into the GFG. I had hoped for something more like the standard of the Square on Bruton St (where I think you can still get a 3 course lunch for about £35 each).

As Barbados distinctly has a season and our visit was out of season we may not have got the full works if the Chef was away. However in our limited experience this is not a place for foodies or even just an occasional food treat. It seems to be aimed at people with so much money that they haven't even noticed or don't care that its not that good or any where near value for money.

My advice, for what its worth, would be to have a drink in the bar/lounge, enjoy the fantastic setting and the view and then go the Beach House or Cin Cin up the road for a far better value decent meal.
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4  Thank Midlands_New_Man
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 21 June 2014

This is a very good restaurant in a stunning location. Service and ambience were outstanding. The food was good but very expensive (about US$ 120 for two courses) and frankly didn't really justify the cost. For that sort of price I would expect three courses, some amuses bouches and a pre dessert or two as you would get in a top Michelin starred restaurant in the UK.

The biggest failing however is the bread which was white tasteless, textureless pap. At this level a restaurant should be offering an interesting range of different breads.

Now I don't want to put anyone off as the initial impression is breathtaking. I'm just trying to give the management some constructive feedback. Go and make up your own mind.

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Thank PaulofPleshey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2014

As much as I tell everyone not to miss dinner at The Cliff on a visit to Barbados, I also have to strongly recommend stopping by for drinks and dessert at the Lounge above the restaurant. The wonderful atmosphere along with drinks made by the incredible Papa Jules, and you have the recipe for a perfect evening. I have gone many times with my wife, and also with larger groups and have always been made to feel very welcome. Though I always love taking in the obvious atmosphere, I am also always in search of a quality cocktail !! I have sampled many of Jules creations, and I have always been impressed by how he infuses numerous fresh items with quality liquor, to create an always memorable cocktail experience. Finally, please dont be intimidated !!!! You will be rewarded with a memorable evening at The Cliff, whether you are visiting the restaurant, the lounge, or both.

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Thank Terrance M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2014

We have been to the Cliff many times before in fact I took my family there to celebrate my 60th birthday. So why a warning? We went to the Cliff in May, before going I tried to book from the UK unfortunately for whatever reason thier web page would not accept a booking. This is important as according to the Cliff rules (unless you are a superstar) tables are allocated according to time of booking in other words the better tables by the water are allocated to the earliest bookings. May I say not to worry if you are not near the water as most tables are super and you feel you are in a World Class Restaurant, that is unless they put you in or try to put you in a table by the kitchen door! That is what they did to us. When we were shown to our table everything seemed alright then we realised that we had a constant stream of waiters passing us not only that they had to pass each other it was like having a meal whilst sitting on Liverpool Street Tube station. We asked for the Duty Manager who appeared, we explained the situation she said there were no other tables. We said we would leave as a the table was not in keeping with what is expected of the Cliff. We went upstairs to reception to recall our car which took 15 minutes in that time I asked to see the Duty Manager again in order that she reported our annoyance to her superiors, she never appeared. Luckily our evening was saved by the owner of The Mews in Holetown were we had a delicious meal. This was not the end of the matter the next day I saw an email message from their Duty Manager to the Manager of our Hotel "The Tamarind" effectively blaming our concierge for not warning us that we would not have a"Water Side" table. As you can see from this report we were well aware that we may not get such a table. That was not the problem the problem was quite simple The Cliff should not put a table in way of the kitchen door its as simple as that. it would seem that to cram in another table the management are willing to for go their reputation
So the warning is book early or do not go unless you are willing to accept what we found unacceptable this a world class restaurant standards must remain world class Oh for "Michael Winner" what would the late great Restaurant Critic have said much more than this I am sure!

8  Thank Merseyside0151
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 June 2014

My Boyfriend booked The Cliff for my Birthday / Last night on our Holiday.
It was amazing from the start,The staff gave us a lovely welcoming, we were seated straight away at the bar/lounge area onlooking the ocean which started the night off beautifully.
The Barman walked us to our table which again on looked the ocean that was lit up to see the turtles, fish and rays.
All three courses were Fantasic, I had the Cajun Red Snapper for main, it was cooked to perfection. I was slightly worried it coming with Garlic mash and oranges but it went together great. And I even received a Lovely surprise from the chef! (birthday message with a chocolate treat)

Yes it's expensive compared to many places over there but worth every penny.
Do book before you go to the island to make sure you reserve a table on looking the sea.
Honestly can't fault anything, see you again in March!

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Thank Poppy P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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