We woke up happy to see the sun shining – it was a beautiful day out. We walked over to St. Ives to grab lunch before hitting the beach for a few hours. We were both on the lookout for crab sandwiches and decided on the St. Ives Tea Room – and we were sure glad that we did!
We ordered fresh crab on fluffy white bread with a side of mayo. The crab had been caught earlier that morning and it was delicious – exactly what we were looking for. We demolished it in about 2 seconds.
We also ordered the special, which was the real star of the show. Cornish Mackerel Filets on grilled sourdough with heritage tomato and herb salad with salsa verde. Holy mackerel, it was good. It was hands down, one of the best dishes i’ve ever had.
After our lovely lunch, we hit the beach to chill out in the sun. There’s three different beaches in the area – Carbis Bay, Porthminster and St. Ives. All are within walking distance of each other and all are equally beautiful. St Ives was packed, so we found a spot at Porthminster Beach and fell asleep basking in the sun. Being from KC where the summers are hot and everybody hits the pool – it was so nice being able to relax in the sun.
Later in the afternoon when the sun began to hide behind the clouds, we decided to take a trip to Seal Island. We walked over to the harbour and waited for the boat to take us out there. Two seals popped their heads up out of the water to say hi – they had been rescued, nurtured and put back in the sea after they were rehabilitated. They loved being around people!
We jumped on the ship and headed for the island. It takes about 45 minutes to sail out and the water was very choppy – our stomachs dipped with the boat. The scenery on the way out was incredible – it was crazy to think that we were sailing on the edge of England.
We were freezing by the time we got back to shore. We warmed up in a little cafe with teas and I tried my very first Cornish Pasty – Apple & Blackberry and a mince meat and potato one. I love trying traditional English foods you can’t get in the U.S. We devoured both of them – they were so good. Hearty, filling, delicious – they’ll warm you right up and trust me, they’re worth the cals.
After we were warm and toasty, we grabbed pre-dinner drinks at the Sloop Inn – Cornwall’s oldest pub dating back to 1312. It is packed in the summertime! It’s a classic fisherman’s hangout. Fun, lively and great music. Definitely worth a visit if you’re in St. Ives.
Later that night, we grabbed dinner at the Porthminster Beach Cafe. It’s an award winning seafood restaurant underneath the slope of Porthminster point, right on the beach with unbeatable views of the Bay.
The service couldn’t be beat and the food was outstanding. I ordered the Shaved Hand Dived Scallops with Vadouvan spice, radish, apple and tarragon to start, followed by the Baked Cornish Cod Fillet with Lobster Claw anglaise, crispy potato, tarragon and shaved mushrooms. The scallops were plump, made the way all scallops should be and melted in your mouth. The Cornish Cod filet was evidently fresh, moreish yet so filling. All the elements in each dish were methodically thought out and worked so well together.
We shared a bottle of wine and ate til our hearts were content. There were even fireworks from a wedding taking place at the hotel. It was truly one of the most memorable evenings to date and the ideal way to end our trip. Thank you Porthminster Beach Cafe for the fabulous hospitality! Next time we’re back, we’re picking up the cookbook.
All in all, it was a trip I’ll never forget. We ate our weight in seafood, drank some amazing wine, saw seals, basked in the sun and enjoyed a new adventure. On to plotting the next one…