Opposite the Italian Gardens and a stone’s throw from the Royal Hotel, a chic bar serving Mediterranean food and drink offers you the chance to dine in the midst of Weston-super-Mare with southern European influences. Olea on South Parade offers a modern interpretation of Mediterranean food and drink with influences from Spain, Greece and Italy, as well as elements of traditional British cuisine.
With summer on the horizon and temperatures slowly but surely improving, it’s the season for cold drinks and al fresco dining, which is why we decided to take a look at Somerset’s tapas offerings. With a fairly elegant interior and a small outdoor seating plan, Olea occupies a prime location in Weston.
The wide range of hot and cold tapas is available for £13.50 for three dishes or £19.95 for two more. 22 different options from peppers stuffed with feta to halloumi in a sweet chilli sauce.
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It was a pretty bad day so I decided to sit outside. You’ll have to put up with the sound of stopping and passing vehicles, but it wasn’t too much of a problem. Alternatively, you can sit inside, which have top-notch decor and lots of city cocktail vibes — which brings me very much to the point of the bottomless brunch, which Olea also serves.
A mix of cold and warm tapas is allowed, with some difficult choices. Ultimately, after some serious and intense minutes of thought, I settled on shrimp cocktail, sweet chili halloumi, chicken teriyaki, potato croquettes, and honeyed chorizo — all served with slices of flatbread.
The service was pretty quick, with a bottle of beer of course. No complaints.
The tapas themselves were the perfect amount for an afternoon snack or small lunch. Ideal to accompany drinks with a few friends. £20 is quite high for the five dishes but in the end it was good food.
Weston-super-Mare has a wide range of chippies, bars and independent eateries but none quite like Olea. It was almost Turtle Bay with a twist – if not Caribbean.
Even better, the venue often hosts live music and invites local artists to perform, including the likes of local jazz artist Marvin Muoneké and singer-songwriter Harrisen Larner-Main in recent weeks.
So if you’re in the mood for a few cocktails or even a larger meal, Olea is a gem that’s walking distance from anywhere in downtown Weston.
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