There is something about the salty sea air that makes you think and feel differently; more adventurous, healthier, an increase in appetite and it also makes seeing your dreams a little bit clearer as if you are nearer to them somehow. Every year for Glen’s birthday we take a little English winter retreat to our favourite seaside town of Padstow on the Cornish coast. We love this spot partly because of the stunning estuary and vibrant harbour beside which it lies and Padstow also happens to be a foodie’s mecca as it is home to Rick Stein’s amazing and renown Seafood Restaurant. A few days here every November after a busy wedding season allows us to refresh, recharge and dream up our new ideas and goals for the next 12 months.
Rick Stein is well known for his amazing food but perhaps less so for the fantastic accommodation available at his restaurants. The rooms at The Seafood Restaurant and St Petrocs Bistro are some of the loveliest and most comfortable spaces we have ever stayed in. This year we had an extra special treat with our room at The Seafood Restaurant having an incredible balcony overlooking the harbour. The outside was brought in with these magnificent views, making leaving the hotel to enjoy the surroundings completely unnecessary.
Padstow is full of Cornish charm. Still a working harbour the little town is a hive of activity every day with a mix of fisherman and plenty of local and visiting dog walkers with their exuberant four legged friends.
After lazy mornings being spoilt by the little luxuries of staying at The Seafood Restaurant we love nothing more than to go walking around the changing estuary and towards the sea.
Even though lunch times should be a fast in preparation for the evening feast we are always tempted by good old fish and chips that doesn’t get any better then when you are right there at the source, your fish fresh from the day’s catch. A cheeky cornish lager is of course a must!
The actual Seafood Restaurant is lovely, a fabulous mix of impeccable service and the seaside setting provides a refreshingly relaxed fine dining experience. The most stressful part of the entire holiday is deciding what to have for our three course dinner every night! A few of the highlights were the hot shellfish platter to start with every conceivable shellfish on the plate, the incredibly decadent Lobster Thermidor as a main and a delectable chocolate fondant for dessert, at which stage it is a bit of a battle of wills to finish as the food here is not only terrific but generous too.
The break provided plenty of opportunity for some play with our cameras and being terribly fortunate with the weather in November, wrapped up warm we could even enjoy the balcony in the early evening to capture the harbour atmosphere as darkness fell.
A few days away feels like a week and again we return to our lovely home in Cheltenham and our beguiling Burmese cat feeling ready for the year ahead.