DINNER AT MULLION COVE HOTEL
Glowing from their recent award of two AA rosettes, the Mullion Cove Hotel has just launched two new winter menus alongside its locals’ Mullionaires Club, which entitles residents with a TR postcode to discounts and special offers.
Perched high above Mullion Cove, the hotel has been refurbished over the past few years and the restaurants are warm and comfortable spots from which to watch the sun set. Under the friendly guidance of General Manager, James Sharp, we tested out the food in the art deco inspired Glenbervie Bar, named after a famous shipwreck in the area.
Head Chef Fiona Were has put together two special menus for the winter months. She is adept at creating mouthwatering dishes – I’d heard great things about her cooking and had been looking forward to trying her food for a long time – on menus from which you would be happy to eat anything and everything.
The winter Farmers’ Market menu costs £18 for three courses (choose from items marked with cute little duck footprints) and is available daily from 11.30am to 2.30pm and 6.30pm to 8.45pm, excluding Sunday lunch.
Starting on 27 November and running through December*, guests can choose two courses each (items marked with a wine bottle) along with a bottle of Château de Grandmont Beaujolais-Villages Nouveau 2014, for just £40 per couple.
*or until stocks of the Beaujolais have been depleted.
The arancini (above left) were the best I’ve tasted. The Mediterranean vegetable risotto contained within the crispy coating was oozing, creamy and unctuous, and perfectly balanced by the watercress pesto, parmesan shavings and sweet, roasted tomatoes.
The terrine (above right) of pressed game (from the Tregothnan Estate) and calves’ liver was delicious, and fabulously pink. The accompanying flavours of sharp crab apple, sour cherry and sorrel worked extremely well.
For the main course, the confit Terras Farm duck leg (below left) was a great option. The meat was full of flavour and just fell off the bone; the Calvados velouté added the requisite sweetness. Pickled red cabbage and a perfectly executed gratin dauphinoise completed the dish.
I opted for the venison burger (above right) and it was enormous, a dinner in itself, and exceptional value at £12.50. Cranberries and chestnuts were packed into the delicious burger which was topped with Helford Blue. The red onion marmalade had the most fantastic hint of cinnamon which worked so well with the venison, and the handcut chips actually tasted of potatoes. The salad was well dressed and topped liberally with pomegranate seeds and segments of clementine for sweetness.
I couldn’t resist trying a pudding simply entitled “Chocolate” and this didn’t disappoint (below left). The chocolate courgette cake was accompanied by chocolate and raspberry sorbet, chocolate soil and blackberries. There was something Blackforest Gateau-y about the flavour combination – dark, chocolatey and fruity – and delicious.
Pretty as a picture, the duck egg crème brulée (below right) was rich and smooth, with a satisfying crack as the spoon hit the golden caramel, enhanced by the buttery stem ginger shortbread and sugared almonds.
Every element of the food was perfectly cooked, and not once did we find ourselves reaching for salt and pepper. Attention to detail meant that each plate looked beautiful and I struggled to do some of the dishes justice with my photography.
We concluded that both menus were very good value, and we’ll definitely be returning for some more of Fiona’s fantastic food. Reading through the menu today as I write this review, I am longing to try “Crab” (crab salad with radish, spring onion, pea shoots and orange), “Hedgerow” (quince frozen nougat, toffee crab apple, blackberries and apple blossom) and “Ragstone” (Ragstone goats’ cheese, gingerbread, marron glacé, quince jelly and dried cranberries). The portions were generous and as well as being a warming winter evening meal the menus would also make an ideal lunch after a long walk along the coast path.
We were guests of the Mullion Cove Hotel. Thank you to James, Fiona and their team for looking after us so well.