There’s only one way to make it through the Cornish winter… and that’s with plenty of food & drink!
Luckily, Penzance has you covered.
As you may or may not know, The Old Coastguard in Mousehole suffered some serious damage earlier this year due to a fire that ended up burning down parts of the building. Owned by EatDrinkSleep, who also own Gurnard’s Head in Zennor and The Felin Fach Griffin in Brecon, The Old Coastguard is a traditional Cornish inn with 14 bedrooms and a popular restaurant too.
They are currently in the process of rebuilding the damage at the inn in Mousehole, but in the meantime they’ve opened a ‘pop-up’ restaurant at The Vault Kitchen in Penzance, serving sharing platters and tapas and plenty of wine!
Frankie and I headed down there for lunch last week, and ordered a selection of different plates to try out. But first, cocktails!
The Vault have just created a brand new festive cocktail list, so we knew we had to try it out. They all looked so delicious, but Frankie chose the ‘Darling Clementine’ and I went for the ‘Ginger Snap’. Would highly recommend trying these to get you in the Christmas spirit (literally!).
They have a variation of mini appetiser-style plates to choose from, including things like focaccia, oils and tapenade, pork crackling, and Porthilly oysters! Frankie decided she fancied trying one, and watching her attempting to eat it was hilarious. I can safely say I don’t think oysters are her thing… In the end she gave up and I ate it instead – tasty!
For our sharing platters (designed as tapas, ranging from £6.00 – £7.50 per plate) we chose crispy whitebait with tartare sauce, mussels in a chilli, ginger, spring onion and sake sauce, sashimi from Newlyn market with wasabi and pickled ginger, and sarrano ham & squid arancini with miso mayonnaise. We also ordered a side of chunky triple cooked chips with brie to share as well!
As you can tell by the menu items mentioned, there’s a definite Japanese/Asian theme with all the dishes – which is my absolutely favourite kind of food! They were all super tasty, although I did feel the sashimi was a very small portion for the price. We often make sushi at home so I understand that these cuts of fish are quite expensive, but I felt for the price it wasn’t particularly good value. I have passed these comments on though so they may update this – I’d be interested to know!
Both of us agreed that our favourite dish was the ham & squid arancini. I wouldn’t have ever thought of this combination but it was delicious, especially paired with the miso mayo – really different and really tasty!
For dessert, the specials board caught our eye, with their cinnamon doughnuts with chocolate mousse. We ordered a plate each, thinking the portions would be smaller like the main plates, but boy were we wrong! Three huge doughnuts appeared in front of each of us, and although they were incredibly delicious, we couldn’t eat them all so ended up taking 3 home with us too.
If this dessert is on the specials when you visit, I’d highly recommend it – so tasty and very festive!
As well as offering food & drink throughout the next couple of months, The Vault are also hosting plenty of festive events throughout December and January, including Wreath Making with RubyAlice Design, Christmas choir singing, New Year’s Eve drinks, plus you can also book to have your Christmas party here for £25pp (groups between 6 – 20).
To find out more, stay up to date on The Vault Facebook Page, and stay tuned for The Old Coastguard re-opening in 2020.
*We were invited for a complimentary lunch in exchange for review, but all opinions are my own.