CLOSED: The Orrery

Overall rating: 4.5 stars 3 Reviews
Small vegetarian cafe situated in a lavish Grade II listed building. The menu is concise, serving snack type food. Cafe area has muralled walls and ceiling depicting the inside of a celestial globe, based on Alice and her famous trip through Wonderland. A giant planetarium is located in the ceiling. The rear of the building is a small museum devoted to the life and work of Donald McGill, King of the Saucy Seaside Postcard. 2.5 hours away from London Waterloo, you can get a train ticket which includes the ferry. The cafe and museum will close for periods when out of season, so please check both websites if you should decide to visit. OCT 2014 REPORTED SHUT BY HC MEMBER. Price: Inexpensive more-less
Lacto, Ovo, Beer/Wine, British, English
15 Union St, Ryde
Isle Of Wight, England PO33 2ER

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  • Cash only


First Review by wildfang
  • vegetarian

Friendly amazing place

Posted on 05 / 07 / 2013

I spent the long week end in Ryde and on Monday lunchtime I went to the Orrery. The place is literally amazing, especially if you like Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland, and/or you want to have a laugh with funny vintage postcards (there's a museum in the cafe).

You can have lunch in the Orrery (with panini, felafel...), and you can also have the standard cafe stuff. I also ended up buying a 70s postcard about rabbits, as I saw a lot of them walking around the island.

Pros: Friendly staff, Amazing place, Low prices
Cons: Small choice
  • vegan

Lunch at the Orrery

Posted on 02 / 17 / 2013

The 3 of us went for lunch midweek. We were served wonderful coffee with soya milk and falafel pockets with salad. It was the only vegan option. We had to wait about 40 mins for it, but was incredibly delicious. All came to around 20 pound which isn't bad.
The place is very interesting with a picture postcard museum and a spiral staircase down to the loos. There's plenty of information around about things happening on the island and local newspapers and magazines available for reference.
Don't miss the shiny ball outside of the building above the entrance!!

Pros: Interesting quirky place. , Nice wholesome meal , Nice service and reasonable value
Cons: Not a lot of choice , Little small
  • vegan

Vegan-friendly café on the Isle of Wight

Posted on 06 / 02 / 2011

We went to the Orrery about a week ago and had a nice time there. It's a sort of hip place with interesting interior explained by the fact that they're a museum at the same time.
All their three dishes of the day turned out to be vegan so we decided to try the hotpot (see picture above) and a toasted bagel with vegan cream cheese as well as a small soup (butternut pumpkin and white beans) which was all very tasty and not too pricy.
We both got a glass of orange juice and tried a piece of gluten-free vegan fruit cake (which was a bit dry) and two macaroon fingers. All in all we paid 17 pounds.
We wanted to come back the next day to try their jacket potatoes but it didn't work out unfortunately.
The two ladies working in the Orrery were quite friendly and helpful concerning vegan options. Confronted with the few options for vegans on the Isle of Wight I would certainly recommend this place to others.

They also serve coffee and hot chocolate with soya milk and have some small internet cafe as well as free wi-fi for guests.

Pros: many vegan options, interesting atmosphere
  • Caryne

    I would suggest the above review is totally ignored. After several emails with the owner it seems that the above menu was served for only a few weeks and has now stopped. There is no longer any 'full meals' being served and though the snacks are vegetarian there is very little for vegans except a 'felafel in pitta bread' and a 'flapjack'. Sadly it seems the owners feel there is little demand for vegan/vegetarian meals to be served in this location.Perhaps it's up to us vegans/vegetarians to go there and prove him wrong?

  • wildfang

    Maybe instead of just writing emails you should actually go and try this place. I went there less than a month ago so it's not very likely that suddenly the whole menu has been changed. Maybe the owner didn't write friendly emails to you - however, my partner and I were treated in a very friendly way by the staff and it might be better to get an own idea of what it is like and, as you have already said, raise the demand for vegan options.
    When I was there, they didn't have flapjacks or felafel in pitta bread - strange. Sounds like, since you are closer to them, you should go and see and update us on it :-) It would be a shame if one of the few 100% veggie places on the IOW had changed in such a disappointing way.



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Last updated: 2014/10/24


Added: 2007/08/01


Added by: Guest