SUPPER AT THE PORT GAVERNE HOTEL
Whilst looking for info for the latest Foodie Diary, I discovered that The Port Gaverne Hotel has a great set lunch menu, which is also available between 6pm and 7pm as an “early bird” menu.
I’ve been wanting to visit the restaurant since hearing it reached no 23 in the UK Top 50 Gastropubs in 2017 (as well as winning many other awards for the pub, accommodation and food, including two AA rosettes) so this seemed the perfect excuse to go and try it out.
It was a bitterly cold night when we ventured down to Port Gaverne. Parking very close to the sea in the pitch black is not my forté, but after a bit of dithering (there were a huge number of cars outside the pub for a January week night) we made it.
Inside, the pub was warm and cosy; the bar was buzzing with a large group of friends having pre-dinner drinks, chatting and laughing, and creating a lovely atmosphere.
The dining area was surprisingly pretty, with various nautical decorations, fresh flowers, heaps of comfy cushions and coloured glass.
I sat right beside the roaring fire, in an attempt to defrost, whilst trying to decide which of the delicious sounding dishes on the menu to order…
To start, I chose the carpaccio, which was a hugely generous portion of wafer thin, perfectly pink, beef fillet, topped with rocket, green beans, bresaola and truffle oil.
Jim opted for the beautifully thick and creamy cauliflower and Davidstow Cheddar soup. There were chunks of smoked haddock hidden beneath the surface – this was a wonderfully wintery and warming starter.
Jim’s main course was a heap of braised puy lentils and curly kale, topped with three enormous proper Cornish pork sausages, and roast balsamic shallots.
I chose the pan fried pollock – another really generous portion – the perfectly cooked fish was served on a mound of crushed potatoes and tenderstem broccoli, and covered with a spiced crab butter.
For pud, Jim enjoyed the poached quince and frangipane tart. The pastry on this was so thin, crispy, and buttery, and the filling just divine. It was served with a scoop of muscovado ice cream.
I had the chocolate (of course), in the form of a dark chocolate pot. This was scattered with smashed honeycomb, three super-sized blackberries, and a little lime zest to bring it to life.
We thoroughly enjoyed everything we ate. It was proper pub food, in the sense that the portions were generous, and ingredients kept fairly simple. However, there were enough cheffy skills in evidence for us to tell that this was no ordinary pub kitchen, and very deserving of its accolades.
Service was friendly and efficient, and we’ll definitely be visiting again!
For more details, menu, and to make a reservation, visit portgavernehotel.co.uk.
The set price lunch/early bird menu is currently available from 12pm to 2pm, and 6pm to 7pm, Monday to Saturday, priced at £16 for 2 courses and £19 for 3 courses. Our supper cost approximately £55, including drinks, for two people, which seemed like exceptional value.