Bottomless Brunch Birthday
This year, I really thought that I would be having my birthday at home due to lockdown but I was extremely lucky because the government announced that pubs and restaurants could reopen from the 4th of July and it was also announced that people could stay overnight with family. My birthday is the 7th of July and I always spend my birthday with my parents in Crawley so you can see what I mean by extremely lucky as my favourite restaurant in Crawley is Turtle Bay, it was scheduled to reopen after the announcement and I could go and stay with my parents. I was over the moon as it also meant that for the first time since March, I could use some of my holidays at work to have a few days off.
As soon as I could, I called Turtle Bay and booked us a table for the Bottomless Brunch. The deal is that for £25, you get food and unlimited cocktails for an hour and a half. It used to be for 2 hours but they have to be careful due to restrictions so had to reduce the time a little bit.
We used to just book over the phone or on the app, quick and simple, but now you need to give card details to secure your booking. I booked over the phone so I gave my email address to get the email confirmation and it had a link that I had to go through to give my card details. Once that was done, I had another emailing confirming my booking. I didn't have to pay a deposit or anything to book, it was so they could take some money off my card if we didn't turn up. I've seen a lot of restaurants doing this now and I completely understand why, they have to look after their business as well as their customers.
I'm not going to lie, I was super excited, after months of not being able to go out properly, I got properly dressed to go out to Turtle Bay for an afternoon of amazing food and THE best cocktails you will ever have. Now, when I say properly dressed up, I am talking make-up, a dress and high heel shoes, I was not going to waste this opportunity to get a bit glammed up.
We arrived a bit earlier than expected, we were far too excited and ended up leaving my mum and dad's half an hour early even though Turtle Bay is only a 5 minute walk from their house haha.. We were pleasantly surprised that the place hadn't changed too much beside some clear screens between tables, a one way system around the bar and you aren't allowed to sit at the bar anymore. There was measures in the toilets to keep to social distancing like not being able to use all the sinks, soap dispensers or cubicles as well.
We were the only ones there at first so it felt like we got the VIP one-on-one treatment from the manager and the waitress. Both were brilliant to talk to, we were talking to the manager about their opening night which was the Saturday before and he was saying that as the night went on and people had had a few drinks, it was hard to keep people to the restrictions and social distancing rules. I felt sorry for the staff as I thought they must of had people getting angry with them when it isn't their fault that the restrictions had been put in place.
The time for the brunch started as soon as we ordered our food so we got straight into the cocktails. Even when there was a few other tables, we were perfectly located on the one way system so that the staff had to come past us to get to the bar. This meant that when they saw we had empty glasses (which wasn't ever for long haha), they would get us more cocktails.
We did have a little problem with things on the menu not being available but it was because their supplier had let them down, with all the pubs and restaurants being able to reopen, suppliers had huge orders coming in and they couldn't fill them all. It took us a few minutes to work out what we could have but we got there in the end, I had the Shack Stack Burger (on the left) and my husband had the Surf Side Burger (on the right). We did only just have the burgers as part of the brunch deal but they were both seriously yummy.
The Shack Stack Burger had a beef patty, bacon, cheese, onion relish, a baby gherkin, tomato, BBQ sauce and hot sauce. It wasn't as hot as I thought it was going to be but it had just the right amount of a twang to it that it was perfect.
The Surf Side Burger was a fish patty, squid, manga mole, pickled vegetables, wild rocket, tomato and jerk mayo. It was so nice that my husband wouldn't share it with me haha.
Between us, we managed to get through a lot of the cocktail list but I wasn't in the best state to remember by the time we left so I'm quite glad that I remembered to take pictures and tick them off the cocktail list as I was going. I hadn't really had a proper drink in months so I think it went to my head very quickly haha.
I do remember that my 2 favourite cocktails were the Strawberry Daiquiri and Koko Kolada. The Strawberry Daiquiri is a classic, I just love it and the Koko Kolada is the closest thing they have to a Pina Colada so there was no chance of me saying no to that.
My husband had his own favourite cocktails which were the Rude Boy and the Beach Coma Zombie. They are both a bit on the strong side for me but he loves them.
All in all, I had a fantastic birthday and can't wait to go again.