Urban Reef Restaurant
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November newsletter


Welcome to our special Santa, festive, mulled wine, cinnamon and all things snugly inspired newsletter.
This month we're going to look at our rather exciting Christmas and New Year plans. We're salivating over Sunday Roasts, we get to meet the lovely Naomi in 'meet the team', Saeed and Lou and his beautiful photos in 'meet a customer', we get to learn some pork belly tips in 'what's in your tummy', we want your rubbish Christmas decorations in 'competition' and you get to meet 130 year old Pinks in our 'bestest friends' whilst washing it all down with a hot buttered rum in 'hiccup'. All in all a rather lovely jubbly way to spend the next five minutes of your lives we like to think.

As always feedback on this month's newsletter or anything else is appreciated via mark@urbanreef.com. Remember if you want to read any of our previous newsletters you can find them here.

Thanks so much for reading, enjoy the blurb, keep in touch and pop in and see us soon.

Cheers – Mark (Head Urbaner)

Mark Cribb Urban Reef owner  

The next 30 days

In the next 30 days clearly the biggest thing going on is Santa donning his boots, harnessing up the reindeers and getting sloshed on sherry and mince pies at the bottom of our chimneys. We've got a little carried away and will be transforming the restaurant into a 'winter wonderland' on the 1st December. It's cost us a few quid so please come down, take a look and buy a lovely glass of mulled wine or some dinner to help us out... then we will love you and survive the rubbish months of January and February before summer comes back and we can all breathe a huge collective sigh of happiness.

Christmas Menus

60 of you for Xmas day now. We're really looking forward to it so thanks for joining us. Enough space for about another 40, then we'll be out of turkey so book now so we can let the farmer know.

Both our party menu for the month of December and our Xmas day menu are now available online.
Emaillauren@urbanreef.comwith anything you would like to know since we pumped her full of Xmas cheer so the rest of us can carry on being just a little bit grumpy, but not Lauren, nope, she's whistling Jingle Bells as I write (just kidding by the way, we're all happy little elves really!) So, no naff Christmas parties for you, come and join us and we'll shower you with even more festive love and cheer, and actually proper quality food and drink...

Sunday Roast

We've had some New Forest venison, some Doset Lamb, some Hampshire Beef, some Dorset Pork and some great veggie dishes too. Giant Yorkshires, a nice shiraz, open fire, sea views... we can't really think of a better way to laze away a lovely Sunday afternoon. Lots of you seem to agree too so best to book and remember you can do that easily online here because we're fans of keeping things easy.

New Years Eve (that'll be the 31st of December you know!)

Oh, it's hard not to get excited about seeing in the New Year. In our winter beautifully lit and decorated wonderland we'll be throwing a great New Years Eve party to remember. Welcomed with a glass of champers as part of your stunning 6 course dinner and entertained and singing the night away with Urban Reef regular Jonathon Cotton you'll not want to miss this one. Details and menus can be found here and you can book by calling 01202 443960.


Also coming soon to a deli near you (well ours in fact!)....

We have decided to launch our own range of hampers! We thought that as we have so many lovely suppliers and so many lovely local products in our deli, what could be nicer than packaging them up in an Urban Reef Hamper!

Each hamper will contain goodies from our shelves plus sweet treats from Kay our baker (as so many of you love them!) all packaged in a lovely hamper. Ideal for Christmas or for birthdays or any special occasion at all really!


Sunday night live

Don't forget that that our new SUNDAY NIGHT LIVE event is on the last Sunday of every month with our resident musician Jonathon Cotton. Last month was hugely popular with all of you so make sure you come down for this one, we only have a few tables left so book in quickly!! Full details can be found here.

Music Wednesdays at the Urban Reef

Jonathan Cotton
28th November


Meet the team


Every month we like to introduce you to one of our team so you get to know the family and feel at home when you turn up in your slippers. This month I'd like to introduce you to Naomi. Naomi has been with us since the start of summer and is so damn efficient she can practically run the place on her own now!

Naomi grew up in Bristol, and from there moved down to Bournemouth to study Graphic Design at the Arts Institute. After an amazing 3 years she graduated in July 2009. With a baking hobby and having grown up around a trained confectioner (her mum) a stint at the Urban Reef seemed a natural way to re-enthuse a passion for all things food and drink. Naomi hopes to ultimately set up a cake shop to merge these passions.

Training - Naomi has worked in the hospitality industry for just over 10 years beginning as a commis chef and working her way through every area of the business from pot washing to waitressing. Hospitality and hard work both run in the family so starting at an early age Naomi is now on the top of her game and we're very grateful.
Favourite Food - A traditional roast dinner with all the yummy trimmings.
Favourite drink - A good bottle of shiraz wine, ideally with that roast dinner.
Did you know - Naomi has been to a total of 46 gigs and counting, many working for charities such as Oxfam as a steward. 'A great way to enjoy the experience whilst giving something back' Naomi informs us.

Meet the Urban team



Meet a customer

We love Boscombe, and having made it our home for the past four and a bit years we really want to recognise the amazing local community who make this place diverse! Each month we'll introduce you to a couple of our lovely customers, who as a thanks for being special will also get dinner for two on us. To nominate yourselves please email community@urbanreef.com and let us know what you like about Urban Reef, Boscombe and life in general xx

This month let me introduce you to:

Who: Saeed and Lou

Love: Saeed and Lou are both locals, well been here long enough to be called local now at least! Both escaped from their home city of Portsmouth over 10 years ago to the bright lights, or the sandy beach at least, of Bournemouth. They have only been a couple for a short time and had their first date at Urban Reef! In their words 'Great date location guys, lots of escape routes if needed! :)'.

Saeed is a local photographer who really loves the sea and beach and trying to capture those fleeting moments that others pass by and maybe go unnoticed. His favourite spot along Bournemouth seafront has to be Boscombe Pier, something about it is like a magnet to his camera. Saeed is always available for weddings, bar mitzvahs and funerals ;) www.focusvisuals.com. He's got some absolutely stunning shots of the local area here so you really must take a look!

Like the Urban Reef because: (Over to them...) 'You can't beat a beach BBQ with a mojito in hand, but it has to be dark rum. Nothing worse than a white rum mojito, well that or a Sunday without a roast! Still one of the highlights of Bournemouth has to be the beach in the winter months when it's deserted and all the tourists have gone home. After a windy walk there's nothing better than a cuppa and a large slice of lemon cake at Urban. Why anyone would want to live anywhere else is beyond us. We feel very lucky to be here. (We agree. Thanks for being loyal customers and please do enjoy a night on us by way of thanks xx).'

Urban Reef loyal customers

Saeed and Lou


What's in your tummy?

Pork belly with braised red cabbage

You can't beat a bit of perfectly cooked pork belly. Cook it long enough and it becomes beautifully tender and moist and literally falls apart on your fork. A little bit of acidity from the apple and red cabbage cuts through the fat beautifully and the cinnamon and nutmeg lifts the flavours and makes you feel warm and fluffy inside. If you can't be bothered to make it, just come and order it and it'll make you happy.

Main ingredients (serves 4)

1 pork belly, skin on
5 star anis
2 bay leaves
750 ml cold apple juice
500 ml dry cider
1 tsp butter
salt and black pepper
calvados to taste


Preheat the oven to 150C/gas2, line a deep roasting tray with parchment paper and scatter with peppercorns, star anise and bay leaves.

With a sharp knife score the skin of the pork belly.

Put the pork in, skin side up, cover with apple juice and cider, cover with baking parchment and kitchen foil.

Cook for 3 hours, until the pork is tender and the juices run clear, remove the juices and retain.

Turn the oven up to 200C/gas 6. Return the pork to the oven and roast another 15 minutes or until the skin has darkened to a rich golden brown.

Take the meat from the oven and let it rest 10 minutes in a warm place.

Boil the cooking juices and reduce finish by whisking in knob of butter, adjusting the seasoning with a little calvados, and salt and pepper.

Braised red cabbage (serves 5-6)

500g red cabbage
220 g cooking apples peeled, cored and chopped small
220 g onions, chopped small
¼ whole nutmeg, freshly grated
¼ level teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ level teaspoon ground cloves
3 level tablespoons brown sugar
3 tablespoons wine vinegar
½ oz (15 g) butter
salt and freshly milled black pepper


Remove the stalk from the cabbage and shred the rest finely.

In a large casserole, arrange a layer of shredded cabbage seasoned with salt and pepper, then a layer of chopped onions and apples, spices and sugar. Continue with these alternate layers until everything is in. Now pour in the wine vinegar, lastly add dots of butter on the top.

Put a tight lid on the casserole and let it cook very slowly in the oven for 2-2½ hours, stirring everything around once or twice during the cooking

Fondant potatoes Method

Preheat the oven to 200C.

Firstly peel your potato and cut in half lengthways in the middle, making sure that they are cut to equal size so that they have the same cooking time.

Take a high sided roasting tin and place on a medium heat add 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil and add the potatoes cut side down

When they are golden brown on one side, turn them over and season with salt and pepper.

Now add the chicken stock to just underneath the potato. Just before you put them in the oven, add a good knob of butter - this will help give them a great glaze.

Scatter with thyme sprigs.

Cover the tray/dish with greaseproof paper and place in the oven, cook for approx 12-16 minutes. You can check they are done if you can cut through them with a sharp knife easily.

Urban Reef recipe of the month

Pork belly with braised red cabbage


Oohh, a competition...

Tackiest Christmas decoration competition

So you've casually observed that Christmas is approaching and we've splashed out on some beautiful restaurant decorations. For the bar though we thought you could help and it would be fun for you to hunt down the tackiest Xmas decoration you can possibly find. So hunt in the loft, go to a pound store, or make one if you feel creative, but we'd like to be in possession of the most garish, tastelessly colourful, showy or elaborate decoration in the world so we can hang it behind the bar and give our team and our customers a good laugh (tis the season to be jolly).

Send your decorations to:

Urban Reef Restaurant,
The Overstrand,
Undercliff Drive,

or just drop them in, and as usual we'll buy dinner for 2 for the winner... what are you waiting for?

Last months winner of the pumpkin competition were Dominic (age 5) and his dad. You can see their beautiful pumpkin in the shot adjacent and more on our blog.

Urban Reef competition

Pumpkin competition winners


Some of our bestest friends


Each month we like to introduce you to one of our lovely lovely suppliers who help us provide you with the very best local produce that we can mutually find and create. This month let's meet 'Pinks'. Pinks was founded in the late 1880's by Fiona Pink's Great Grandfather... that's cool enough on it's own we think! Pink's became a household name and had the contract to supply Pink's Plum Jam to all the soldiers during the Great War. Pinks use organic ingredients that are sourced locally and all their products are made in small batches by hand in 'open pans' to ensure their quality.

We love Pink's because their products are made using crops from land that is not intensively farmed and without the use of high levels of pesticides. They also devote a lot of time into sourcing their products (something we are very familiar with!!) and will not compromise on the quality of the products they sell. They are also a lovely bunch and are very helpful, especially due to the fact they are sending us lots of samples for our taster evening!! Take a look at their website for a bit of culinary inspiration http://www.pinksorganics.com.

Urban Reef bestest friends




Hot buttered rum


50ml Pampero Gold rum
5ml knob of butter
Sugar or syrup or sachet of white sugar
2 slices of lemon
cinnamon stick

How to make it:

Put all ingredients in a small heatproof pan, except cinnamon.
Add dash of hot water.
Heat it all up making sure butter has melted.
Pour into a heatproof glass, stir and garnish with a cinnamon stick.

The Urban Reef Hiccup

Hot buttered rum


web: www.urbanreef.com

Urban Reef Restaurant
The Overstrand,
Undercliff Drive,
Tel: 01202 443960

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