GONE are suggestively-flourished oversized pepper grinders — modern Italian restaurants distinguish themselves with locally-sourced ingredients, creativity in the kitchen and less provocative condiment delivery.

Tramezzini in Ventnor is the sister venue to the phenomenal Smoking Lobster, so seafood is strong here.

Matt's baby prawn and Ventnor Bay crab tacos impressed — with generous servings of delicate shellfish, enhanced by simple tomato and lime salsa, all in crispy home-made taco shells.

Cat's chicken rillette starter was a clever construction of coarse-diced chicken, layered on Cajun-spiced crisps and spotted with black garlic.

Its zizzy Isle of Wight tomato salsa with a pep of citrus was the stand-out component, making Cat exclaim with joy at the first forkful.

If anyone thinks risotto is a curious accompaniment to battered fish, they are simply wrong and should be sent to Tramezzini immediately to be schooled.

The tender, light fish in the delicate tempura was perfect with this outspoken seafood rice.

The silky laksa soup was studded with prawns and fresh tomato chunks, all soaking into the rice to make a magnificent rich Asian-inspired risotto.

Chock-full of lobster and crab, with oodles of big prawns and flaked poached local cod, creamy lobster sauce and plenty of melted cheese, Cat's delicious lasagne was the perfect comfort food.

Its side salad was mixed with black olives, pickles and samphire, introducing sparks of flavour.

Fresh, hot churros surrounded a luxurious scoop of sweet white chocolate parfait that Matt polished off in pleasure.

Sashaying on its plate was Cat's panna cotta.

As the song goes, this was poetry in motion — the wibbliest of milky puds, none of that rigid rubbery stuff here.

Teamed with sweet and refreshing Caribbean flavours of coconut, pineapple and lime, this pina colada in dessert form was the perfect summer dish. A great end to the meal.

The team in Tramezzini's kitchen definitely knows its onions — and seafood.

The food at the little High Street venue was outstanding.

Using fresh and very local ingredients to create stunning dishes with exclamation-worthy flavours, we were delighted again and again.

It's yet another high-end restaurant we can recommend in Ventnor, and we say that if you like the massively trendy Smoking Lobster you'd be well-advised to seek out its more established sibling for a different but equally enjoyable meal.

Matt and Cat's bill

Smoked chicken starter £7.50

Prawn taco starter £8

Tempura sea bream risotto £21

Seafood & lobster lasagne £18

Panna cotta £6.50

Parfait £6.50

Total £67.50

Five stars: Exceptional — one of the very best places we have visited.

Read a longer version of this review, and others, at Matt and Cat's Isle of Wight Eating Out Guide.

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