Total MK checked in with Turtle Bay to sample its new menu, which offers meat-free diners a tempting array of vegetarian and vegan dishes...and we came away smiling...
The teetotaller amongst us is sipping the pineappleade - a mix of pineapple and fresh lime juice, topped with club soda. It sure beats the hell out of a jug of water.
Across the table, the 2-4-1 cocktails are offering up a sweet early evening kick.
Our new table friends are Bahama Mama and Caribbean Pimms.
The former is sweeter than your better half- a strong blend of Koko Kanu coconut rum, banana liqueur, pineapple juice and pomegranate syrup. Like we said. Sweetness and delight.
For a twist on Pimms, going Caribbean works perfectly.
It's fruitier than usual - with lime, ginger, orange slices, passion fruit and leaves and leaves of mint. Fresh, crisp and refreshing. Please, waiter ...can we have another!
Sweetcorn Fritters start us off, and are generous in portion, and with a warm glow, thanks to the Scotch bonnet working hard in the fried parcels.
Oh, and there's West Indian hot sauce at play too. Lots and lots of yum.
The same can be said of the Stuffed Pepper Roti which are disappearing quickly on the plates of my fellow diners – the trini oven baked roti are plump with shredded cheese, carrots, spicy potato and onion.
Empty bowls all round. Two of us dining tonight are non-compromising veggies, and we've been waiting for eatery's to come round to our way of thinking.
Our server, Courtney, knows her menu and makes some welcome recommendations, taking time to talk through the options and with reassurance.
Today, two of us take the Vegan Spinach, Aubergine and Sweet Potato Curry, which is cooked with Jamaican spice and plumped up by green beans, kidney beans and sugar snap peas.
It is remarkably flavoursome and when you dig in it bites back with a real kick.
One Spiced Chickpea Ital Wrap also finds its way from the menu, which is a juicy blend of jerk roasted mushrooms and red peppers, shredded carrot, crispy cabbage and Caribbean slaw.
Take it with spiced fries (as we do) or a dressed salad. Both dishes are surprisingly full fillers.
We've never eaten in Turtle Bay before.
Sure, the décor is cool and inviting, but we would pass by, sure that it couldn't provide a choice of non-meat options.
Staff say that was once the case, but certainly no more.
Turtle Bay have listened to the growing meat free fraternity and responded in delicious style.
Not only does this menu boast plenty of vegetarian options, but they do a fab new line in vegan lip-licking plate fillers too, as we have experienced.
We've all had our appetites dealt with and frankly, are feeling a bit sheepish that we've never stepped through the door before.
Pudding feels like one step too far, but we go for it regardless, with one Banana & Toffee Cheesecake which sounds thick and gloopy – triple layered with biscuit base, creamy cheese, banana and toffee – but looks can be deceiving. It is sweetness and light, literally and an easy finish. This could be our favourite new desert. It's that good.
We're so busy devouring ours that we forget to swipe a taste of the Fresh BBQ Pineapple across the table, and by the time we look up, it's done – gone.
The caramelised and grilled fresh pineapple, rum caramel sauce and coconut ice-cream obviously hit the spot someone!
The service was spot on, the food fabulous and those cocktails? Love 'em.
Turtle Bay is Caribbean class. You'd be a jerk not to try it!
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