16 Best Cafe’s and Restaurants in Cornwall [2022]

Looking forward to a food adventure but unsure where to start? No worries. We’ve listed the top cafe’s and restaurants in Cornwall to help you plan your trip.

Whether you’re craving Cornish pasty at a quaint café or haute crab sandwich at a chic spot, the county has choices for every taste bud and budget. We will take you on a food journey, from unassuming takeaway kitchens to the best Michelin restaurants in Cornwall.

In no particular order, here are 16 of the best cafes and restaurants in Cornwall you should visit for an unforgettable gastronomic experience.

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1. Porthminster Beach Café | St Ives

Postcode: TR26 2EB

Located on the scenic Porthminster beach, Porthminster Beach Cafe is an award-winning seaside eatery that has been putting a refreshing spin on traditional Cornish cuisine, combining it with Asian and Mediterranean influences.

From the café, you can see a spectacular panorama of St. Ives Bay, making it one of the best restaurants with a view in Cornwall.

Relish not only the freshest seafood but also newly-picked produce from its adjacent garden and local ingredients foraged from the coast.

There is a range of vegan and vegetarian options as well. So, if you’re looking for some of the best restaurants to eat in St Ives, Cornwall, this café will surely impress you.

2. Outlaw’s New Road | Port Isaac (Over 10’s Only)

Postcode: PL29 3SB

In 2021, chef Nathan Outlaw closed his flagship restaurant in favour of Outlaw’s New Road.

This redesigned eatery continues to focus on seafood served in a more inclusive and casual setting instead of a formal dining environment.

The restaurant is famous for its sea-to-table dishes, such as grilled cod with clotted cream and roasted turbot with tartare sauce.

Unfortunately, Outlaw’s New Road does not allow children under 10, but there are still loads of fun activities you can do with kids in Port Isaac.

3. Paul Ainsworth at No6 | Padstow

Postcode: PL28 8AP

Rick Stein may have cemented Padstow’s reputation as a food hub, but he is not the only celebrity chef to leave a mark in town.

Located in a Georgian townhouse, Paul Ainsworth at No6 restaurant serves contemporary British food. Its talented team creates a unique à la carte menu with locally-sourced produce and ingredients.

Imagine deep-fried oysters, caramelised butter, homemade chocolates, and newly-baked crusty bread.

The restaurant has no stunning views, but the setting is cosy, unfussy, and relaxed. Plus, you can watch the chefs at work.

4. Rick Stein Fistral | Newquay

Postcode: TR7 1HY

From award-winning fish and chips to hearty Asian curries, this family-friendly Rick Stein restaurant blends succulent seafood and the rich flavours of India and the Far East.

Your choices extend to decadent homemade desserts, such as Cornish ice cream. The restaurant doesn’t take reservations, but you can take advantage of its virtual queuing system.

Just scan their QR code, and the staff will prepare a table for you whilst you stroll on the beach. The eatery also provides takeaway and delivery. It is not only one of the best restaurants in Cornwall for guests with kids.

It is also perfect for those who want to enjoy great food in the comfort of their own homes. After a hearty meal, explore the other famous attractions in Newquay.

5. Star and Garter | Falmouth

Postcode: TR1 2AF

Nestled among antique shops and charming boutiques at the top of the old High Street, this gourmet gastropub lives a nose-to-tail philosophy.

You get fish from the boat, meat from the farm and produce from local suppliers. The duck salt chips and grilled sandwiches with sauerkraut are justifiably famous. But nothing beats its Sunday roast, consisting of the freshest meat, veggies in season, Yorkshire puddings and silky gravy.

There is also a bar area on the roadside where you can enjoy world-class whiskies, rums and signature cocktails.

6. Nice Baps | Wadebridge

Postcode: PL27 6EL

Newly revamped and refurbished, this cosy Nice Babs is a no-fuss café and serves all-day breakfast boxes, baps, burgers, pastries, fresh cakes, doughnuts and a broad selection of coffee.

It also has vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options. Open from 8 AM to 3 PM, Nice Baps is something of a local landmark and voted one of the best restaurants in Cornwall.

#Some of its famous patrons include the cast and crew of the TV series Poldark, former Prime Minister David Cameron, and celebrity chef Gordon Ramsey.

7. Potters | Bude

Postcode: EX23 8BH

Owned and managed by Chef Oly Clarke and wife Nikki, Potters boasts simple but sumptuous dishes, something its talented staff calls their own version of Cornish tapas.

The menu includes small plates, large plates, snacks, sides, and desserts, featuring meticulously-sourced and seasonal, home-grown produce. With a setting that is cosy and intimate, Potters is one of the best restaurants in Bude, Cornwall, for relaxed but elegant dining.

The restaurant is open from 6 PM to 9 PM but also offers afternoon tea by booking only on Fridays and Saturdays from 6 PM to 11 PM.

8. Cowslip Café | Launceston

Postcode: PL15 8HN

Tucked away in a tranquil garden overlooking the Cornish hills, Cowslip Café is one of the best restaurants in Launceston, Cornwall, to enjoy excellent home-baked meals against the backdrop of spectacular countryside views.

Sample the quiche filled with broccoli, blue cheese or cheesy leek, or the beef and horseradish baguette with salad. Try the fruity lemon tart, warm brownie with chocolate sauce, and clotted cream vanilla ice cream.

This homely café is probably not as well-known as the fancier and more famous restaurants in Cornwall, but it certainly hits the spot.

9. The Shore | Penzance

Postcode: TR18 2QP  

Simple but unforgettable, this tiny waterfront restaurant delights with its uncomplicated but mouthwatering dishes. The ambience is warm and homey, with its unpretentious decors and plain tables. But its fish-and-seafood-only menu awes even the fussiest eater.

If you’re looking for an exceptional dining experience, the Shore is undoubtedly one of the best restaurants in west Cornwall for seafood lovers.

Booking is a must as the restaurant does not accept walk-in customers due to limited stocks. The five-or-seven course meal occasionally has optional drink pairings, such as the violet-hued digestif, Bitter Truth.

For some sweetness, there’s dark chocolate, miso ice cream, and matcha kasutera. 

10. Prawn on the Lawn | Padstow

Postcode: PL28 8AB (Padstow town), PL28 8LE (Trerethern Farm)

Is it Prawn on the Lawn or Prawn on the Farm? The names get confusing, but they’re the same award-winning seafood restaurant. In 2020, Padstow on the Lawn moved to a bigger space in Trerethern Farm, 2.2 miles outside town, to continue operations amidst the pandemic social distancing restrictions.

If you miss the original location, it will reopen in October 2022. So, what makes this eatery one of the best restaurants in north Cornwall?

It’s the well-curated ingredients, such as the daily catch from the surrounding seas, home-grown herbs and veggies, and local wines from the nearby organic vineyard. If you’r

e expecting traditional flavours, you’re in for a surprise. You’ll find unique combinations: scallops in Thai marinade with basil, cod cooked in Sri Lankan black curry, and lemon sole with nduja and tarragon.

11. Caffé Rojano | Padstow

Postcode: PL28 8AE

Considered one of the best Italian restaurants in Cornwall, this laidback trattoria serves fresh and tasty pasta dishes, hearty Napoletana-inspired sourdough pizzas, and seasonal seafood cooked using Mediterranean techniques.

Enjoy the tagliatelle pasta with slow-cooked beef ragu, chimichurri dressing, and Italian breadcrumbs. Taste the egg ravioli with chorizo and sage. For seafood lovers, try the grilled octopus or the cod in pesto broth, mussels, peas and macaroni.

Save room for their signature dessert, Whoopsey Splunker, made of brown butter soft-serve ice cream with Cornish fudge, roasted peanuts and cherries.

Caffé Rojano also has a children’s menu so you can dine with the entire family. While in Padstow, be sure to experience the fun activities for kids and kids-at-heart.

12. The Square at Porthleven | Porthleven

Postcode: TR13 9HQ  

Overlooking the scenic Cornish harbour, The Square is both trendy and classic.

On a sunny summer day, dine al fresco on the partially-covered terrace as you watch fishing boats come and go. Winter is ideal for cosying up and indulging in heartwarming coffee and cake.

The menu changes daily depending on what’s available. But you will surely get superb-quality fish, shellfish, meat, veggies, and other ingredients carefully selected from local suppliers.

After all, the restaurant received a Michelin Bib Gourmand for excellent quality and good value cooking. It also features a healthy kid’s menu designed especially for younger diners.

13. Appleton’s | Fowey

Postcode: PL23 1AH

Chef and owner Andy Appleton, former head chef of Jaime Oliver’s Fifteen London, brilliantly showcases classic Italian dishes, adding his own contemporary Cornish twist.

Named one of the best restaurants in Fowey, Cornwall for its homemade pasta and anchovy fritters, Appleton’s primarily uses local produce but also incorporates specialist ingredients from Italy.

Expect lip-smacking meals like squid ink and crab linguine topped with Italian breadcrumbs and Fowey mussels with leeks and spicy sausage. If you visit on a Sunday, you’ll get to enjoy its famous brunch menu.

14. Ugly Butterfly by Adam Handling | St Ives

Postcode: TR26 2NP  

A couple of miles from the bustling town centre, you’ll find this delightfully contemporary dining space, which offers splendid views and even more splendid cooking.

Ugly Buttery earned the reputation as one of the best restaurants near St Ives, Cornwall for its creative, beautifully presented, and flavour-packed dishes.

Additionally, it focuses on sustainability and zero food waste, utilising everything – from peels to stems to offcuts – in bar snacks or as a basis for their signature cocktails. 

15. The Seafood Restaurant | Padstow

Postcode: PL28 8BY  

The Seafood Restaurant put Padstow on the radar of food enthusiasts.

Rick Stein and Jill Stein opened this spot in 1975, and it has since maintained the status as one of the best fish restaurants in Cornwall. Its highly-skilled team uses only the freshest fish and shellfish to create simple but flavourful dishes.

Try the classic fish and chips, savoury grilled Padstow lobster infused with fine herbs, and exotic Indonesian seafood curry comprised of cod, bass, and prawns with rice and coconut salad.

If you’re looking for the best restaurants in Cornwall, the Seafood Restaurant should be your first stop.

16. Kota | Porthleven

Postcode: TR13 9JA  

Kota is undoubtedly one of the best restaurants in Cornwall. It holds a Michelin Guide Bib Gourmand award and is one of only five eateries in the country to receive three Rosettes from the AA.

It’s easy to see why. Kota strives to create an exceptional dining experience with its diverse menu of uncomplicated classics mixed with elaborate touches and subtle Asian influences.

There’s crispy monkfish with lemongrass, coconut bisque and saffron mayo. You’ll find venison tartare in hazelnut, apple and gochujang dressing.

For vegetarians, the menu includes tempura tofu, roasted cauliflower with hummus, and refried beans with corn salsa, chilli and avocado.

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