City Guide: Gin & Olive

Grab a bite

As a student in Portsmouth, you've got plenty of options for delicious food

Portsmouth is a fantastic eating city.

All the big names and chains are here – you'll find most of them gathered in one place in Gunwharf Quays – but what sets the city apart are our great independent restaurants and cafes.

Places to eat

All the places to eat and drink below are independently-owned and run. They're all either a short walk from our main University buildings, or near a stop on the free University bus (U1) route.

And all these places to eat and drink are just for starters: there are even more amazing places to discover a little further from our buildings, and well worth exploring. Dig in.

(All images, copyright the individual businesses.)

Coffee | Cakes | Sandwiches

Bread addiction loaf, image copyright Bread Addiction

Bread Addiction

Unbelievably good breads, pastries, sandwiches and cakes, made fresh on site. It's tiny inside, so getting a table is tricky, but the sourdough sandwiches and cinnamon buns are worth it >

Donut, copyright Hideout Coffee

Hideout Coffee and Donuts

Opposite St. Andrews Court in the University quarter is Hideout – an insanely instagrammable place whose coffee and eye-popping donuts are as tasty as the interiors > @hideoutcoffeecompany 

Lunch in Hunter Gatherer, copyright Hunter Gatherer

Hunter Gatherer

Catch the U1 to Festing Road to find Hunter Gatherer, where specialty coffee and incredible brunches and lunches await – 100% of the menu is vegetarian and almost everything is vegan too >

Southsea Deli interior, copyright Southsea Deli

The Southsea Deli

An amazing deli in the heart of Southsea, where you can buy – and eat – fresh, healthy, seasonal food from small local and regional producers. Great for breakfast, lunch, and coffee >

Pizzas | Burgers | Street food

Burger at Noshbox


Street food business near Portsmouth & Southsea station serving brunch burgers, loaded tots , smoothies and juices. Look out for their student menu and offers >

Need Street Food, image copyright Need Street Food

Need Street Food at The Merchant House

The award-winning Need Street Food serve insanely-good burgers, gyros, mac and cheese, and vegan grub at the Merchant House brewpub. Every order also funds the shipment of life-saving food to children overseas too >

Image copyright Outside-In Food Court

Outside-In Food Court

Based in a renovated warehouse near Eldon Building, you'll find great street food vendors – at this plastic-free, cashless and popular spot >

Seafood | Roasts | Comfort food

Image copyright Strong Island media

King's Street Tavern

Home to unbelievably good roasts on a Sunday – and home-smoked BBQ meats during the week – the King's Street Tavern is a cosy spot for a real feast. Good beers too >

Image copyright Southsea Beach Cafe

Southsea Beach Cafe

Right on the beach and serving great fresh seafood, the views from Southsea Beach Cafe across the Solent are amazing all year round, but especially in summer. Try the fish and chips >

Image copyright abarbistro


A cosy and always bustling pub-restaurant just a short walk from the Library, it's a good spot to take the parents when they're in town (especially if they're paying) >

Image copyright Nicholsons

Nicholsons Tapas

Next door to Hunter Gatherer is Nicholsons, an intimate and relaxed place where you'll find authentic Mediterranean tapas dishes. A good place to take a date >

Asian food

Image copyright Viet Quan

Viet Quan

Opposite Ravelin Park and the Library, Viet Quan makes delicious and authentic Vietnamese street food, including traditional Pho, bubble teas, flat rice noodles, summer rolls and much more > Call Viet Quan

Image copyright Lins Thai Cafe

Lin's Thai Cafe

Lin's has been serving up great-tasting authentic Thai street food for ten years and counting, and you can bring your own drinks – two reasons it's been a student favourite for the last decade >

Image copyright


Portsmouth's first Japanese restaurant opened in 2009 and has been bringing fantastic sushi, sashimi, temaki, ramen and noodles to the city ever since >

Image copyright Noble House

Noble House Chinese

A great Chinese restaurant run by one of our Entrepreneurs in Residence, Albert Choi, the food and service at the Noble House are well worth seeking out >

Something different

Image copyright Pie & Vinyl

Pie and Vinyl

Southsea's very own record store and pie shop hybrid, Pie & Vinyl is a cosy spot where you can stock up on records in between eating some great pie and mash. There's often live music too >

Image copyright HUIS

HUIS Belgian bar and kitchen

You'll find amazing croque toasted sandwiches, sweet Belgian waffles, schnitzel, moules frites and craft beers at Huis – which means 'house' in Flemish. A cool, relaxed place for lunch or dinner >

Image copyright DICE


Dice is a board game cafe that stays open until 10.00pm. It serves a snack menu and has a library of over 500 board games >

Image copyright Agora


A family-run restaurant serving up original and traditional Turkish and Greek dishes – including delicious mezze and authentic kebabs cooked over a real charcoal fire >

Ice cream and gelaterias

Portsmouth also has 4 late-night gelaterias where you can socialise with friends over ice cream - look out for Scoops, Sprinkles and Swirls for a late-night sweet fix.



For the foodies

Specialist supermarkets

Portsmouth is a multicultural city and we're lucky enough to have a number of specialist supermarkets nearby. The Okey Chinese Supermarket, Mediterranean Supermarket, and Polski Sklep Delicatessen Maya are all on the U1 University bus route, or just a short walk from it.

Find out more about essential shops to pick up food and drink, including shops specialising in international ingredients

Food festivals

The city hosts food festivals throughout the year, including the Hampshire Street Food Awards, an annual Oktoberfest weekend, regular Vegan Festivals, and the yearly Southsea Food Festival in Palmerston Road.

Food delivery apps

Portsmouth has hundreds of restaurants – including many of those listed above – who deliver to your door through the Deliveroo, Uber Eats and Just Eat apps. They'll even deliver to the main entrance of our halls of residence (just don't keep them waiting too long...)



More inspiration for places to eat and drink

Discover more fantastic places to eat in the heart of Portsmouth, with these restaurants, cafes and pubs right on your doorstep.

Andre's Food bar

The oldest independent sandwich shop in Portsmouth and Southsea

Andre's offers healthy and fresh food with a 10 per cent student discount, including baguettes, salads, baked potatoes and paninis.

Andre's food bar was started in 1988 by my aunty and uncle.

We're very proud that he was the inventor of many of our unique fillings.

We've grown to two shops.

We've got one in Southsea and one in the heart of the university district.

We like to think we offer healthy, fresh food so that students feel like they're living a healthy lifestyle whilst they're at university.

It's just a very convenient and just healthy option, really.

Whenever I'm popping into the library or whether I'm going to lectures or seminars, it's always just a handy place to pop in.

It's easy just to pick up lunch on the way.

We treasure them.

As such, we offer a 10% student discount.

Portsmouth for me, there's always a lot going on, especially when it's sunny.

The mood is just unrivalled.

You've got the beach, there's also a nice sense of community.

I think especially because there's a lot of students, it feels very tight-knit.

With the waterfront, the historic dockyard, a really good mix of nationalities.

I think that it's the perfect place to come and study a degree.

You've got everything available to you.

The Southsea Deli

An amazing deli in the heart of Southsea

Buy – and eat – fresh, healthy, seasonal food from small local and regional producers. Great for breakfast, lunch, and coffee.

I'm Daniel, I'm the owner of the Southsea Deli.

My name's Luke, I'm the general manager here.

I'm Michaela, I'm a second-year film production student.

We pride ourselves on being a small, friendly cafe, shop, cookery school where local people can come in, buy great products that are made locally.

People supporting us in Southsea, they're also supporting a whole wider range of local amazing food producers.

The world is trying to push for more locally sourced foods, and that's a variety that they have here is great.

We've also got lots of nice places to stay so you can have your laptop and use the Wi-Fi and just have a change of scenery.

It's very modern.

We can come here to study, we can come in.

It's just two as well as obviously the amazing food they have.

I think Portsmouth is a bit of a hidden gem is such a signal to students.

It's a small, lively setting.

There's so many local independent businesses.

I think that's what makes Portsmouth and Southsea so unique in its own way.

Meat and Barrel

A family run business near Southsea seafront

Meat and Barrel offers incredible burgers, wings, fries and craft beer from both local and international breweries.


A Kitchen and Tap House based on Palmerston Road

Serving unbelievably good beer, wine and spirits, along with delicious late-night food and cocktail deals.

Croxton's is a tap house in Southsea.

 There's really good vibes at the nighttime with like cocktail deals and late-night foods, so everyone on a student budget likes a deal.

 Before 1809, Southsea was named Croxton after Thomas Croxton.

 All the owners are from Portsmouth, and I feel like the community is so strong in Portsmouth.

 So it's just all about bringing local people together and remembering the history of Southsea.

 It's the lazy seaside town.

 It just stands out from other places.

 Everywhere else down the road is chain based, whereas, here we have locally sourced craft beers.

 It's so much different to everything else in Portsmouth.


Find out more about life in Portsmouth

Take a closer look at more of the exciting things on offer in our amazing city.

Beaches, piers and parks

Portsmouth is a bustling city with the sea on our doorstep and green spaces all around.

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Essential shops

Find out where to pick up essential items including food and household items. Or order online from local stores.

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