There are plenty of places in Devon & Cornwall where it would be a shame not to eat outside. For exceptional food to accompany the views, these restaurants and feast-makers offer great al fresco dining experiences for more memorable nights out.
Catch the Puffin water taxi from the marina or kayak over the glittering River Exe to reach the picturesque River Exe Café. It’s moored in the middle of the estuary so the views are special and we recommend booking for the early evening, as the sunset washes through the restaurant. Mussels will likely come from the very waters that surround you and the fishermen who caught your seafood may pass the floating barge. The food is fresh, local and a very high standard. This is a truly unique dining experience.
Al fresco dining is all about sensing and enjoying your environment and Sharpham Estate’s outdoor café, Cellar Door, is perfect for just that. Surrounded by the green, sloping Dart valley, you’re in for a treat when you pay a visit. Fish is sustainably caught and hauled in from South West waters, artisan cheeses are made metres away from the kitchen and the menu often uses ingredients picked from the estate. Make sure to wash it down with a Sharpham wine of course, or book in your own mini wine tasting experience.
Bring your own plates, alcohol and cutlery and be treated to great company and exceptional wood-fired food, eaten to the sight and sound of the tide. If you are lucky enough to get a ticket to one of Hidden Huts’ feasts on the South Cornwall coast, expect a special dining experience shared with strangers-turned-friends on one of their beachside long tables. As the beach changes throughout the seasons so do the feasts. In autumn expect cosy and warming local pork belly, in summer joyful fresh lobster and chips, and hot smoky shellfish.
The Wild Wine Club designs its feasts to be a sensory delight, eaten outdoors amongst smells of woodsmoke or sea salt. No two feasts are the same. You might be kayaking to your food, dining in sunny woodlands or gathered around sand-dug tables. One constant is the passion and knowledge about wines that the curators bring to the table and the impeccable food that’s served. Expect to be introduced to new vinos (and the stories that come with them) that carefully complement every flavour on your plate.
Situated in between the Tate St Ives and the beach, Porthmeor Beach Café is the perfect place to take in the glorious Cornish coast. We like to sip chilled cocktails here on their decking or enjoy breakfast in one of the booths, listening to the gentle crash of the waves on the beach below. Their menu showcases contemporary cuisine and tapas, and makes the most of the abundance of local produce.
Seemingly on top of Cornwall, Tremenheere Kitchen is a relaxing spot with a sunny terrace surrounded by the Tremenheere sculpture gardens. Usually eating outside gives you a slight buzz and after a stroll around the gardens, mazing throughout its artwork, it’s a satisfying place to mark a pause while you take in the unrivalled views of St Michael’s Mount. Homemade local lunches, cream teas or local G&T’s are all on offer to accompany the striking views.