Rockwater was established in 2020 as the brainchild of Luke Davis. Having recognised the huge potential of the location Luke aspired to create a vibrant community hub offering a range of dining, well being and entertainment experiences in the heart of Hove. Fast forward a year, and despite opening during the height of the pandemic Rockwater is now a thriving restaurant and social hub offering a wide range of fitness classes and events – just as Mr Davis planned!
There are several options for dining at Rockwater depending on whether you’re just popping in for your morning coffee or looking for an indulgent, fine dining restaurant experience. Your options are:
Beach Deck – No booking required. Just rock up and order drinks or snacks via the Rockwater App.
Bar & Kitchen – Downstairs you’ll find the Bar & Kitchen where booking is recommended. Serving food from breakfast through until dinner expect hearty dishes like Lobster Mac n Cheese, Buddha Bowls, Rib – Eye Steaks and good ol’ Battered Cod & Chips.
The Lodge – Tucked away at the back of Rockwater, with views over the lawns is The Lodge. A laid back, lounge style setting where you can enjoy a coffee, pastry, pizza or even cheese foudue.
The Roof Terrace – Rockwater’s stunning roof top dining experience. Booking recommended. Bask in the sunshine while feasting on brunch, shared seafood platters or exquisite, tapas style small plates.
Roof Terrace Review
I was invited to visit the Roof Terrace at Rockwater to review their rooftop dining experience. I visited the restaurant on a Friday lunchtime with a gal pal. We were both chuffed to be visiting such a stunning location for lunch – something we rarely make time to do. This was a real treat for us both.
As soon as you walk up the stairs into the Roof Terrace Restaurant you’re greeted with wall to ceiling views of the sea sprawling towards the horizon. The vibe is very much more Balearics than Brighton with hanging plants, clean designs, cool furnishings and an overwhelming sense of space and light.
Service (Staff were unaware that this was a review until we asked for the bill)
We were looked after really well from the moment we arrived. Drinks and food orders were taken promptly with dishes was delivered within 15 minutes of ordering. We chatted to one of the table waitresses who was really friendly and had a giggle with us. I only gave 4/5 because there was a question about the bill that I had to talk through with 3 different members of staff – although they were helpful it felt a bit awkward.
I found the menu a little bit confusing. There are some fantastic, and very reasonably priced breakfast options, but then then there’s a section for Sharing platters which range from £13.50 for Vegan Tortillas to £90 for the Winter Fruit de Mer Hot Pot. The rest of the menu offers a range of Small Plates (although no large plate option) which our waitress described as being like large tapas style dishes. Maybe some guidance into the size of dishes is needed on the menu? Or a large plate option?
We ordered a selection of four small plates to share – dressed crab, cured baby carrots, fillet of beef and porchetta. The food was all beautifully presented and served promptly. The dressed crab was my favourite dish, served with crusted potatoes which were delicious. The fillet of beef was also cooked to perfection, accompanied by squid, shrimp and Chimichurri for a ‘small plate’ this dish certainly packed a lot in. The porchetta looked stunning adorned with a colourful fennel and radicchio garnish. The cured baby carrots looked wholesome and hearty but, for me, was missing a bit of zing. Overall, the selection of small plates looked amazing, tasted just as good and was filling enough to not have room for pudding!
The Roof Terrace is not cheap but you’re paying for a premium location, which I feel is worth the price. The small plates are reasonably priced ranging from £9 – £20 *for the beef fillet. If, as suggested you order two plates and a side each you’re looking at a total of around £30-£35 per person just for food. I would categorise The Roof Terrace as a luxurious dining experience for special occasions – and with those views it’s worth the blow out every once in a while..
I really enjoyed our lunch on the Roof Terrace. The setting really made this a stand out experience with my friend and I both commenting several times how we felt we were on holiday rather than just 30 minutes from home. The venue creates a real sense of luxury and escape. I enjoyed the small plates which offered a chance to explore a wide range of tastes and flavours all at once. I’d certainly go back but it’s a little out of my budget so I’ll be saving my next visit for a special occasions. Fortunately it’s my birthday his month so who knows..?
Dressed Crab – £13
Cured Baby Carrots – £13.50
Fillet of Beef – £20
Porchetta – £12.50
Disclosure: We received a complimentary lunch at the Rockwater Roof Terrace for the purpose of this review.