Restaurants and Cafes

Best Restaurants and Cafes in Cornwall

Over the past couple of decades Cornwall has propelled itself to being one of the UK's go-to foodie destinations. It stands to reason when you think about how much fish and seafood is landed here, and this is what tends to dominate the menu.

Along with fantastic coastal locations and plenty of quality local produce, the allure of super-fresh fish has led to a host of celebrity chefs following Rick Stein down to Cornwall. The likes of Paul Ainsworth and Michael Caines have both set up shop here over recent years - but it's not only Michelin Stars and fine dining. Think chilled out beach cafes, country pubs with a roaring open fire and fish doesn't have to be haute cuisine - we've got plenty of good chippys too!

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  • Penrose Kitchen // Truro

    Penrose Kitchen

    Situated in tranquil water gardens just outside town, Penrose Kitchen is a world away from Truro's busy streets. The food is local and seasonal, and in some instances, even homegrown. 

    What sort of cuisine can you expect at Penrose Kitchen? Chef Ben Harmer's pedigree includes the Savoy and La Gavroche, so there's a light and refined touch to the menu at Penrose. Look out for the fresh seafood dishes or try some locally reared meat.

    The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner from Wednesday to Saturday, as well as for Sunday lunch. Families are welcome for lunch; however the evening service is grown-ups only. The restaurant is on one storey and has level access.

  • The Plume of Feathers // Truro

    The Plume of Feathers - Mitchell

    Head out of town to the village of Mitchell, home to dining pun The Plume of Feathers. This former coaching inn dates back to the 16th century, and still has a welcoming old-world feel. Choose from the cosy bar with its log fire, the airy conservatory, and The Plume's pretty gardens.

    Chef Andrew Dudley creates modern British menus using fresh Cornish ingredients. Look out for favourite local suppliers like Baker Tom's Bread, Callestick Farm ice cream and Fish For Thought seafood. The Plume's well-known for its steak, while veggies are well catered for with dishes like Homity Pie and hedgerow risotto.

    You can also stay at The Plume, which has a selection of luxurious suites just access the courtyard from the restaurant building. Some of the rooms are dog friendly, many have free-standing baths, and all come with the chance to have a fabulous Plume breakfast in the morning.

  • Porthgwidden Cafe // St Ives

    Porthgwidden beach cafe

    Porthgwidden Beach is a sandy cove tucked beneath The Island in St Ives and lined with traditional beach huts. It's also home to the laid-back Porthgwidden, the place to come if you love your seafood to be served with a view.

    There's a modern indoor dining room and a dog-friendly terrace, all looking out over the Atlantic towards Godrevy. The menu has a Mediterranean feel, with seafood tapas and incredible pizzas. Sitting on the terrace eating padron peppers, this really doesn't feel like the UK…

    Below the restaurant and directly on the beach, there's a takeaway and shop. Grab a cold beer, ice cream or warm coffee, depending on age and outside temperature. The cafe also owns the beach huts ("Pods"), and you can book them online.

  • Tremenheere Kitchen // Penzance

    Tremenheere Kitchen

    This splendid cafe is just east of Penzance, near Gulval. Tremenheere Kitchen sits in a beautiful new building at the entrance to Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens (a Penzance must-visit), and is open every day from ten until three. 

    The food is made from local ingredients, and beautifully cooked. The lively outside area is a favourite brunch and coffee stop among locals (and their pups). If you'd prefer to sprawl on the lawn, there's also a takeaway hut serving hot drinks, ice cream and delicious baked things. 

    Come here on a Sunday for a laid-back roast lunch in a beautiful setting. The roast potatoes are a highlight…

  • Zacry's @ Watergate Bay // Newquay

    Zacry's Restaurant - Watergate Bay

    Zacry's shares the dining scene with a handful of other restaurants at the Watergate Bay Hotel.

    The restaurant's dressed in stylish monochrome and huge pull back windows offer wall to wall views of the coastline that runs right alongside it.

    Meat and seafood dishes are served with a twist here. Head chef, Neil Haydock's outside-of-the-box creations include tandoori-spiced octopus, miso-glazed black cod and crispy coated monkfish with a katsu curry. Fear not plant-based friends, there's a full menu with your name on it so you can still get in on the action.

  • St Mawes Hotel // St Mawes

    St Mawes Hotel Restaurant

    The restaurant tucked inside this luxury seaside boutique hotel dishes up lunch and dinner seven days a week.

    The menu rotates with what's fresh when, but you can be sure there will be a selection of meat and fish dishes on the line-up. Daily blackboard specials spice the foodie offering up each day, and the restaurant's Sunday roast is well worth a look at if you're in town over the weekend.

    For something a little different, the dinner and movie night offers a two course meal and a film screening in a hidden cinema. For those preferring to enjoy the kitchen's culinary skills from home, a takeaway pizza service is available too.

  • Fitzroy // Fowey

    This place is housed inside a former bank, just beside Fowey's riverside.

    You don't have to take our word when it comes to this place, the guys at Michelin Guide agree. With three established restaurants in London, owners David and Jeremie have taken their success southwest to Cornwall.

    The menu changes daily, depending on what's fresh when. Small-sized seafood plates are pretty much guaranteed though. Food envy's a thing of the past here, dishes like half lobster plates allow for a couple of dishes come dinnertime. Save room for dessert though, the restaurant's dessert menu gets just as many kudos as its mains. 

  • Blas Burgerworks // St Ives

    Blas Burgerworks burgers

    "Burgers for people who give a damn!" Blas Burgerworks has been famous for its succulent offerings for years. A victim of its own success, Blas' tiny restaurant was just too small for the hungry customers who flocked here for the flavoursome burgers. But problem solved: Blas now majors on takeaways.

    As well as the legendary beef, chicken and bean burgers, Blas offers rotisserie chicken, and a special rotisserie of the day (example: Trevaskis pork). With sides, nibbles and drinks to order, you can easily put together a veritable takeaway feast.  Good news: all the burgers come with chips. 

    Blas advises booking your takeout in advance, by phone or email. Top fact: blas  is Cornish for tasty. Says it all.

  • The Old CoastGuard Restaurant // Mousehole

    On the way into Mousehole is the Old Coastguard is Hotel. This is long been a favourite of locals and visitors alike, and retains an upmarket feel with a hint of nautical shabby chic thrown in.

    The main dining area is split off into smaller sections for a more intimate feel, but it is the al fresco setup that sets the Old Coastguard apart. Step outside into a sunny terrace and a wonderfully large garden area with uninterrupted views out over Mounts Bay -  the perfect spot for a summer lunch or G&T on the lawn. Offering a traditional Brasserie menu there is always a good mix of local meat and fish and veggie dishes.

    The Old Coastguard also hosts music gigs and events, so it's worth keeping an eye on their website to see what's coming up.

  • Alverne Restaurant // Penzance

    Alverne Restaurant - Penzance

    This really is a little gem in the middle of town, and it's a rare day when you walk past and the outside tables aren't buzzing. Inside, it's comfy and cosy, and the perfect place for a pitstop when you're in town.

    Alverne serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, with the specials board changing daily (and often during the day) to make the most of the fresh Newlyn fish. 

    There's a sunny, Mediterranean feel to a lot of the menu, with tapas-inspired small plates, delicious sides, and a wine list that makes you feel like you're on holiday. Just make sure that you leave room for dessert. And cheese...

  • Rick Stein's Cafe // Padstow

    Padstein

    The Rick Stein Cafe is located in what feels like the bright and airy cottage living room in the middle of Padstow - which is more or less what it is. As part of the Padstein empire you are certain to get quality, innovative food, but this has been combined with a casual dining experience and reasonable pricing.

    The cafe has earned itself a reputation as one of the best spots in Padstow to fill up on a top-notch breakfast before a day's exploring. Whilst the full English cooked breakfast is as good as any there are also plenty of other options drawing on more cosmopolitan influences. As you would expect everything from the marmalade to the pastries is all homemade on site.

    It isn't just breakfast though; you can pop into Rick Stein's Cafe for a light lunch or an a la carte dinner. Whilst, unsurprisingly, much of the menu is seafood there are plenty of other options, including vegetarian dishes. True to the Rick Stein ethos there are an eclectic mix of Asian, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean influences on the cuisine which might not work under the management of lesser chefs. However, the cafe pulls it off and all at prices that won't make your eye's water.

    Please note, dogs are welcome in our courtyard only. Tables in the courtyard are very limited so please ensure you add a note to your table booking.

  • New Yard Restaurant @ Trelowarren // The Lizard

    New Yard Restaurant - Trelowarren

    The New Yard serves a set supper menu from Wednesday through to Saturday from a stable yard in Trelowarren – it's all part of a private estate that's been owned by the same family for more than 600 years.

    This stylish plot was awarded Green Michelin Star back in 2021 – which not only recognises its high-quality food but its sustainable practices too. You'll need to pre-book to try out the flavours and all diners need to show up at 6.30 in time for the first plate which is served promptly at 7pm.

    The menu changes each night the restaurant's open, with each of its courses made from produce that has grown from the estate's well-groomed gardens, or sourced locally.

  • Fat Apples Cafe // The Lizard

    Fat Apples Cafe

    Family-run Fat Apples is situated less than a minutes' drive from Porthallow Beach. A small cafe is joined by a back-to-basics campsite that spreads through an old Cornish woodland.

    It's all about home cooked food here, with local butchers, bakers and fishermen providing the produce. Things kick off with breakfast, which lines up a full-English option and veggie and vegan additions. Snacks and salads follow things up for lunch – in true Cornish tradition the crab salad is a big hit.

  • Jubilee Pool Café // Penzance

    Jubilee Pool Cafe

    It's the perfect day: relaxing in Penzance's beautiful Art Deco lido, with a break for lunch on the sunny terrace.

    There's dining indoors and out at the Jubilee Pool, which serves breakfast and lunch, as well as delicious locally made cakes. Enjoy a plate of mackerel or some Cornish cheeses as you gaze down at the pool or out across Mount's Bay.

    After your swim, head here for a chilled glass of wine or a hot coffee, depending on your body temperature. You don't have to use the Lido to come to the cafe, and there's a separate entrance if you're here just to eat.

  • Lewinnick Lodge // Newquay

    Lewinnick Lodge - Newquay

    Lewinnick Lodge is perched on top of the cliffs at Pentire Headland peering right over the Atlantic, and the views from up here are just as good as the one you're picturing.

    The menu takes classic Cornish dishes and gives them a contemporary twist, salt-baked cauliflower steak and clam spaghetti come highly rated. There's plenty of other choice though, as the menu swings with the seasons, ensuring only the best quality ingredients are used.

    The drinks menu keeps things local with locally brewed ales and beers, there are fine wines and classic cocktails to pick from, too.

  • The Rocket Store // Boscastle

    The Rocket Store - Boscastle

    Not many things come fresher than the plates the Rocket Store serves up. Fresh seafood is delivered direct to the kitchen from the restaurant's very own boat, while meat is sourced from its nearby farm.

    The menu here is all about what's available when, but whatever plate you choose you can guarantee the freshest of foods. The hotel takes its position right on Boscastle Harbour, with the lion's share of seating outdoors.

    You can eat outside in all weather, with parasols fit for days when shade's required, and blankets and heaters for when temperatures take a dip.

  • Restaurant Emily Scott @ Watergate Bay // Newquay

    Emily Scott @ Watergate Bay

    There are plenty of options for dining at the Watergate Bay Hotel, but for locally sourced seafood though, look no further than Emily Scott. 

    Floor-to-ceiling windows provide the Scandi-style restaurant with wide-angle sea views, while slow-go sounds give the place a super-relaxed feel. 

    Roasted scallops with truffle butter and baked Cornish hake are firm favourites, but in true Cornish style head chef Emily provides an ever changing menu in order to make sure every dish that's served comes super fresh. 

  • Porthminster Kitchen // St Ives

    Porthminster Kitchen - St Ives

    As far as locations go, Porthminster Kitchen really has blagged one of the best. It's not actually on Porthminster Beach (it's named after its big sis, Porthminster Cafe) but is upstairs in a Wharf Road building, overlooking St Ives harbour. It's worth a visit for the view alone.

    The food itself is lively and has a range of influences, from Asian to Mediterranean. Local fish features a lot on the menu - look out for their spicy fish dishes and Asian-style salads.

    Porthminster Kitchen serves lunch and dinner. Please book ahead, and if you're dining with kids, please book for before 7pm. Looking for luxe accommodation in central St Ives? The restaurant owns two apartments, also with harbour views.

  • The Old Sail Loft // Looe

    Old Sail Loft - Looe

    The Old Sail Loft is one of the oldest buildings still standing in Looe. It sits right on the town's harbour front, and its history dates back well over 450 years, when its thought to have been used by smugglers and sea faring men.

    Flash forward to today and the largely unchanged building is home to one of the seaside town's best-rated restaurants. Fresh fish comes straight from Simply fish – the restaurants quay-side sister company.

    Favourites include whole Looe Bay lobster, paired with Cornish new potatoes in garlic and parsley butter. There are plenty of meat options, too. Or, if you can't decide between the two surf and turf has got you covered.

  • Star & Garter // Falmouth

    Star and Garter - Falmouth

    Strolling up Falmouth's quirky High Street, you will find a hidden gem in the Star & Garter. Set in a Georgian townhouse this restaurant is fast becoming one of the best gastro pubs in Cornwall.

    It seems no detail is overlooked at Star & Garter. The chefs are very passionate about what they do, and it shows. The menu is refreshingly different, and you are spoilt for choice with all the dishes on offer. The meat on offer is butchered, cured and smoked by Star & Garter themselves.

    Aside from the delicious menu, you have world-class whiskies, a cocktail menu that will tickle everyone's fancy, and such a wide variety of rums that would even stop a pirate in his tracks!

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