I have probably seen the San Fairie Ann Restaurant, located at 43 Alexander Street, Southend (opposite to the car park where we operate as a soup kitchen), most Saturdays for the past few years, without even realizing there was a restaurant there. That changed a couple weeks back when a friend, who along with others in our party that liked the place, arranged for a group of us to enjoy a night out there, which in one place has been described as “bohemian”, whose food I am inclined to describe as (fancy leaning) European.
I should say it was an enjoyable evening, with good food and service in a congenial atmosphere, and an opportunity for friends to hang out in a relaxed setting and enjoy conducive company and good talk. It was quiet (besides us) and our waiter was attentive to our wants and needs. The setting was certainly something that stuck out and for anyone feeling bored, there was a lot to see inside. Pride of place must go to the paintings of the ceiling that reminded me of a secular version of what I might expect if were to visit the Sistine Chapel. I have to confess, I am more a rough and ready (good plain honest grub with pleasant service and not too expensive) man rather than posh and pretentious, when eating out, and I would place San Fairie more in the latter category. But it is often horses for courses and could see why my friend was attracted to the restaurant.
According to its website San Fairie Ann is “hiding away, just seconds from the bustle of the town centre, San Fairie Ann fine dining restaurant & cocktail lounge sits peacefully on Southend’s historic Alexandra Street“, and reminds us that it does a lot more than evening meals. One friend related how she enjoyed a perfectly pleasant afternoon tea there with friends. I wasn’t disappointed with my visit other than thinking there was not a wide enough selection and it was a touch pricey (maybe to pay for the art work). I enjoyed my dishes though: prawn starter and steak main, with creative vegetable etc. selections to go with it and decent house red, and so did my fellow guests. It wouldn’t be high on my must return to list of restaurants though, but if the right horses came along I might be.