The Ergohacks Verdict

Cass loves good food. Growing up on a gluten and dairy free diet, she loves simple fresh foods. Type 1 Diabetes & EDS has made food a tricky thing over the last year and although she can now tolerate small amounts of gluten and dairy, new problems abound. Carb counting is our new way of life and we’re generally geared towards lower carb foods because her digestive issues make it extremely difficulty to match up her food and insulin. It makes eating out hard work. Finding a meal that is low in gluten, dairy and carbohydrates is harder than it sounds when you’re six years old.

We stepped into Rockfish in Torquay on a rare, warm, sunny day in late July. Cass was vibrating with excitement because they serve grilled fish instead of battered fish. She loves fish and seafood, calamari in particular. We placed a quirky order – adult grilled fish of the day, children’s portion of grilled fish and two fried calamari starters. Her glucose levels plummeted – as it does on hot day – whilst we were waiting for the food. She sipped on Chris’ coke – not something that happens as a rule, but being on holiday in Devon we bend many rules.

We discussed how impressed we were with their gluten free menu as we know how incredibly difficult it is when cross-contamination is an issue and how disappointing it is when the menu shrinks to one or two items when you’re on a gluten free diet. We talked about sustainable fishing and how her cod came from Norway, whilst Dad’s Bass came from Brixham’s fish market that morning. Cass’ activity pack arrived and she was thrilled with it. Sea stickers that she could colour in was the biggest hit. Food arrived before we knew it and it was the best seafood we’ve had in a long time. The fish was amazing, Chris was a huge fan on the unlimited serving of chips and Cass snacked on grilled cod and lightly dusted calamari rings. My favourite dish in the world is fried calamari and it was beautifully prepared to perfection.

We had a wonderful meal. The atmosphere was warm and welcoming, asking for carbs wasn’t met with a quizzical frown, but a waitress who disappeared to chat with the chef and returned with more information than we needed.  It was one of the best meals of our time in Devon. We can’t wait to try another Rockfish next time we’re in the region. Highly recommended.

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Cost 

The menu is reasonably priced for fresh, sustainably sourced food. Starters are £7-10, Mains £10-17 and the children’s two-course meal is £6.95. Unlimited chips and complimentary bottled water is served.
Extra costs: A service fee for the excellent staff is recommended.

About Mitch Tonks (owner)

Mitch Tonks started his restaurant empire with the Seahorse in Dartmouth and has since expanded it to the Rockfish chain in Torquay, Dartmouth Plymouth and Brixham and the Spiny Lobster in Bristol. The Torquay Rockfish was the third to be opened and is styled as a beach cafe.

More information here.

Design

Rockfish has a simple, elegant sea themed design. Tables are available both indoors and outdoors and the restaurant in Torquay has beautiful views over the harbour and the English Riviera Wheel.

Specification

Season: Open year round
Location: 20 Victoria Parade, Torquay, TQ1 2BB
Reservations: Not required but available
Opening/closing: 12:00 – 9:30pm
Parking: Plenty of parking nearby on-street and car parks
Public Transport: Excellent transport links as situated in the centre of Torquay

Special considerations
The entire menu is available as gluten free on request.
An informal family friendly restaurant for all ages with no dress code.

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 We based our Ergohacks Verdict on a lunch for three during July 2017. This article was first published on 5 August 2017.