After our recent trip to Merchants Manor and discovering how good the food was, we knew we had to go back to try dinner at the Rastella restaurant.
You may remember our very unique ‘High Tea’ experience we had? That was here at Merchants Manor’s restaurant, Rastella, in Falmouth, designed by chef Hylton Espey. After tasting his quirky creations for the ‘High Tea’ and meeting Hylton last month, we knew we had to go back for a date night to try the evening menu here too.
We arrived to a couple of glasses of fizz on arrival and seated in the cosy lounge area of the hotel while we had a look at the menu. It’s rare that with such a refined, pared back menu like this one that I am stuck between several different options, but this was definitely the case here – it all sounded delicious!
Eventually we decided, and were seated with some wine and some of the restaurant’s homemade breads and special butters in the restaurant area.
I chose a delicious crab bisque for starter, which came with a mini crumpet with crab meat on top, while Alex chose their ‘Game Bird’ starter with Roseland fowl, raisin jam and leek straw. It was beautifully presented and the flavours were incredible! Between this and the ‘High Tea’ menu we had, you can tell just how creative Chef Hylton is.
One of the great things about Rastella as well is their huge focus on local ingredients. I probably mentioned this in the last post about the ‘High Tea’, but it was reiterated here, with the menu even having a map of where all the suppliers and ingredients come from printed on it.
Much of the salad/green ingredients, such as the wild garlic and pennywort, are foraged by Hylton himself from around the Falmouth area, adding a real freshness to each dish.
For main course I chose the ‘Through The Gap’ dish, with hake caught from Newlyn, smoked mussels and a mackerel veloute, while Alex chose the ‘Bodmin Moor’; a brisket dish with greens and the most incredible sweet BBQ sauce. We were both drooling at the flavours here 😍
We both were pretty full after our starter and main courses, but when we took a peek at the dessert menu, we just couldn’t resist. There is nothing I love more than a smooth, creamy Posset, and this one came with a milk sorbet and an amazing white chocolate/caramel flavoured crisp on top. Honestly this was one of the best desserts I’ve ever had – and just writing this my mouth is watering and wishing it was in front of me…
Meanwhile Alex went for the cheesecake with walnut and pear which was equally as delicious.
Overall we were incredibly impressed with the food at Rastella. It is on the pricey side, but the restaurant does have a very prestigious 3 AA rosette award (the highest of any restaurant in Falmouth!) and you can totally see why.
The other brilliant thing about Rastella is the quality of the service. It really is an experience going here, as you’re treated like a VIP all the time. The staff are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable, and can’t do enough to make your experience feel luxurious. You won’t find service like this anywhere else in Falmouth!