I think it’s fair to say the western end of Felixstowe’s beach front has needed a bit of TLC for a while now.

The eastern side has benefited hugely from the beautiful renovation of the seafront gardens, and the creation of the new pier, which is a massive draw to the town for families (including mine – who doesn’t like a 2p slot machine?).

And now it’s time to spread the love.

The creation of Martello Park has certainly helped. And there’s still more to come from Mannings, with the family having created Beach Street last year beside their amusements and arcades at this end of the resort town.

It’s still a little rough around the edges, but there’s a definite verve or coolness to the development, which has seen a clutch of independent gift, fashion and food shops open in reconditioned shipping containers.

East Anglian Daily Times: Beach Street features a number of containers converted into shops and restaurantsBeach Street features a number of containers converted into shops and restaurants (Image: Archant)

Could this be Suffolk’s answer to London’s Box Park or Spark York up north? The jury’s out, with more space yet to be filled. However, what IS there currently is pretty good, and well worth venturing over to on a day (or night) out in Felixstowe.

There’s plenty of outside seating available across the site, with the most highly sought-after surely those at the smokehouse, which is double stacked, offering uninterrupted views over the beach, and (in our case) the sunset.

We didn’t get a chance to try the food there, but will be back for the divine-sounding savoury smoked afternoon teas, or. maybe a smoked meat sandwich.

Parked on a bench, we sampled five of the foodie outlets, building our own veritable buffet in the centre of the table. And that’s the great thing about this place. If you’ve got a vegetarian or vegan in your group, or one person likes pizza, and another’s ‘on a diet’, there’s something for everyone. It’s a feast for the undecided.

East Anglian Daily Times: Pizza topped with handmade Italian sausage at Beach StreetPizza topped with handmade Italian sausage at Beach Street (Image: Archant)

East Anglian Daily Times: Pizza at Beach Street in FelixstowePizza at Beach Street in Felixstowe (Image: Archant)

While we waited for various bits and pieces to be cooked to order, we tucked into whopping great slices of New York style pizza from Four Three, where you can buy pieces individually (£2.50) or order a ginormous sharing ‘pie’.

The counter groans under the weight of at least four varieties – a kind of doughy pick and mix. Make your choice, and they’ll quickly heat and box it for you.

Also on the menu are garlic or cinnamon dough knots. I was tempted...but we already literally had bitten off more than we could chew.

On our table were a fully-loaded, a pepperoni and a cheese and tomato pizza slice. First off, I have to tell you about the dough. Perfection. Clearly a slower fermented, high hydration dough, this was crisp, super puffy and tender at the edges. They sell dips here, and I’d highly recommend buying one to plonk the ends of your pizza into. Absolutely flipping delicious.

The sauce was herby, and peppery, with a hint of sweetness. Cheese was dosed on generously. And the pepperoni was the real deal. But an absolute stand-out was the fully-loaded pizza, which was covered in the team’s crumbly, handmade, slightly spicy, fennel-filled sausage.

East Anglian Daily Times: The Phat Cow burger from Patty Macs at Beach Street in FelixstoweThe Phat Cow burger from Patty Macs at Beach Street in Felixstowe (Image: Archant)

Mr J went for a Phat Cow burger from Patty Macs, which sensibly shut down the kitchen when overcome with orders, so they could keep the quality high for every paid-up customer. The menu offers three beef and one chicken burger, as well buckets of fries or halloumi fries.

And the Phat Cow was quite a beast. It didn’t stack up huge, but it’s flavour, not size, that matters here. Within the brioche bun, a freshly pressed 30-day aged Aberdeen Angus patty that sang with the richness of dripping as the fat cooked through it. And topped with American cheese, pancetta, onion, lettuce, gherkin and a pile of melting, slow-cooked pulled barbecued beef brisket. I can tell you, my husband is STILL talking about this burger, and trying to make up excuses for a repeat visit to Felixstowe immediately.

We also ordered fries from Patty Macs. When they came out they looked pretty greasy. Very ‘yellow’. But appearances were definitely deceiving. They couldn’t have been more dry or crisp.

And they were a great foil for the dipping sauces that came with food from the newest addition to Beach Street – The Viet Street Co. These guys were so inundated by orders on their first night that they pretty well ran out of everything within a couple of hours.

East Anglian Daily Times: Pork spring rolls at Beach StreetPork spring rolls at Beach Street (Image: Archant)

It’s a short but sweet menu of authentic Vietnamese food. Rice paper summer rolls. Spring rolls. Pho (pronounced ‘fuh’) and dumplings.

Our pork spring rolls were spot-on. A large portion of delicate fried rolls, filled with minced pork, vermicelli noodles, and wood ear mushrooms (which don’t really have a flavour, but bolster the texture of the finished product). On the side was a soy dip, livened up with ginger, garlic and a hint of chilli. Addictive eating.

My son, who’s a chip off the old block, and spends a lot of time watching other people cook online, hadn’t tried pho before, and was keen to get stuck in.

The beef version was so, so good. Slippery, thick rice noodles, with bean sprouts, and gelatinously soft slices of beef brisket, in a clear, deeply nourishing, umami broth. Asian soul food. And just the thing for warming your cockles by the beach, if you’re trying to avoid fish and chips.

East Anglian Daily Times: Hopsters at Beach Street sells an interesting range of craft beers and cocktails in cansHopsters at Beach Street sells an interesting range of craft beers and cocktails in cans (Image: Archant)

Beside their set-up is an outlet from Hopsters, where you really can sample one of the best selections of craft beers for miles around. We had a drop from Suffolk’s award-winning Burnt Mill off the tap, where they also had brews from Duration on the north Norfolk coast. And the fridge and shelves are bursting with enticingly colourful cans from brands such as Tiny Rebel, as well as canned cocktails, wines, and interesting soft drinks.

East Anglian Daily Times: Dessert from The Waffle Shack at Beach Street in FelixstoweDessert from The Waffle Shack at Beach Street in Felixstowe (Image: Archant)

To finish up we groaned with fullness as we ordered from The Waffle Shack, which sells topped waffles and pancakes, as well as thick milkshakes.

Handily if, like us, you can’t quite handle a full portion, you can opt for a half waffle.

Ours came with M&Ms, chocolate sauce and strawberry ice cream, and with chocolate sauce and chocolate chunk ice cream. Firstly, the sauces were nice. Obviously bought in, but not the super super cheap ones that are so sickly sweet they make your cheeks hurt. And the ice cream felt of a higher quality too. I couldn’t help feeling, though, that the waffles could have been a bit puffier and crisper. We’ll just have to try them again, won’t we?

Go take a look next time you’re by the coast. Or make a day of it. We love a day out in Felixstowe. A top tip – go try out the indoors 18-hole mini golf within the Mannings complex. It’s only £3 per person and is like being inside Twin Peaks. We always have a laugh there.

Check the Beach Street website for details of the vendors and their opening times.