Having only visited this site many years ago, I was not sure what to expect when a friend suggested a pre-theatre dinner at Mad Hatters.

We arrived promptly at the opening time of 6pm and what a surprise. The restaurant is small, with a large skylight feeding light into the room, a back mirrored wall gives a feeling of space. A completely different ambience.

After a warm greeting and cocktails a bread board appeared with hot varied rolls and garlic butter.

The menu offered something for every palate and obviously had been carefully thought out. I started with a mixed leaf salad with herbed goats cheese with balsamic dressing and my friend pronounced the stuffed mushrooms delicious.

It was followed by a roast rack of lamb cooked exactly as requested, one medium and one well done, an attractive side dish of croquette potatoes, snow peas and broccoli completed the entrée.

The portion of lamb was generous, and well trimmed. Two cappuccinos completed our dinner.

Having enjoyed dinner so much I returned with yet another friend for lunch. Here again, this is not a hurried sandwich menu but the chef uses excellent ingredients with a thoughtful menu supplemented by specials.

Cream of tomato soup was both delicate and well seasoned, followed by special of the day, rockfish which carried a small supplement. Dessert was apple and cherry crumble with a side jug of English custard.

Once again, Mad Hatters proved that it is a serious eating place with competitive prices - the only minor criticism is that for such an excellent restaurant paper napkins rather added a down note at lunch.

Mark Turner and chef Ben Jewette are to be congratulated on this intimate restaurant where food is taken seriously, service is attentive and caring.

Lunch Monday-Friday 12 noon to 2pm: Two courses $19, three courses $24, Table d'Hote Menu with daily specials.

Dinner Monday-Saturday 6pm to 9.30pm . A la Carte Menu with daily specials.

Service is not included, but is up to the discretion of the diner. Due to the small size of the restaurant reservations are suggested.