Review of 'Billy Hundreds: Fish n Tapas'

On the recommendation of our hoteliers after a late arrival in Southend on a Friday night we visited the local fish restaurant, “Billy Hundreds”. Located on the beach on the Easter Esplanade “Billy Hundreds” is a bit of a local hot-spot in an informal atmosphere with great views of the water. This was late November so it was a bit chilly in the basic enclosed dining area with transparent plastic sheets shielding us from the cold breezes. Heaters throughout helped to take the bite out of the air and there were blankets as well.

It was quite busy on the Friday night we visited at just after 9 in the evening but we were given a small table for two near the toilets (which must have been, frankly, very cold though we never needed it). Friday is “Fish Night” so the short one-A4-page menu was crammed with local fishy delights (their normal menu is quite a more elaborate affair).

Though really not that hungry I could not resist the rather unusual “Squid & Chorizo Kiev” (£6.95) though it was a bit of a disaster as it squirted all over the table when we cut into the body of the squid (indeed, when the waitress retrieved the empty serving platter she came armed with a cloth to wipe up the mess she told us she expected) but otherwise was cooked very well though a trifle bland with the chorizo being the strongest flavour on the plate.

Squid & Chorizo Kiev

For mains I had the “Seafood Pasta” (£17.95) which was an absolute delight. A massive portion of spaghetti pasta in a heavy cream sauce with all manner of seafood including squid, scallops, fish and prawns. Again, not full of in-you-face flavours but warm and comforting - Perfect. Despite the menu saying that “All served with a Choice of Mixed Veg or Dressed Salad and New Pots and Sauté Pots” I was not offered any of these but this is just as well as the paste alone was more than enough for me.

Seafood Pasta

My companion tried the “Pan Fried Red Mullet Fillets with Crushed Cesar New Pots” (£17.95) which she really enjoyed though I found the “Crushed Cesar New Pots” that I sampled off of her plate extremely fishy (too fishy for me - ironic given that I had the “Seafood Pasta”).

Pan Fried Red Mullet Fillets with Crushed Cesar New Pots

Though it was getting late we did find enough time to sample the “Lemon Cheesecake” (topped with strawberries?) which was surprisingly light and very good indeed.

Lemon Cheesecake

At £62.70 for the two of us with drinks it was not exactly cheap but the quality was certainly there. The service was OK and quite friendly though often difficult to attract their attention. This seems to be a place to linger with many visitors staying well after having eaten to chat and drink. Relaxed and unpretentious.

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2017-11-24

Cuisine: American/British

Address: Unit 12, Eastern Esplanade, Southend-on-Sea SS1 2YH ENGLAND

Public Transport: NRLOGO Southend East

Location: Southend-on-Sea (England)



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Telephone: +44 (0) 1702 808 350