Some of our favourite Cornish food producers
8th September 2021
We produce a lot of food in Cornwall. We’re known for our fish, vegetables, meat and dairy, which are eaten all over the country. Then of course, there’s all the must-eat Cornish foods: it wouldn’t be a holiday here without a pasty, a cream tea, and fish and chips by the sea!
However, over the last few years, some more surprising food producers have sprung up; either making the most of our gentle climate to grow unexpected ingredients, or simply using their imaginations to create fabulous foodstuffs.
We always make sure we’ve a great selection of Cornish products in our shop. We sell some of these scrummy items, and for others, you may need to pop into St Ives or explore further afield. We’ve included links to their websites so you can easily track down these treats. Of course, there are many, many more irresistible local products – but we had to stop eventually…
Yeghes da!* Cornish tipples
Cornwall’s warm climate makes it one of the most suitable places in the UK for vineyards. While you’re here, try a glass of Camel Valley’s award-winning sparkling wine or their gorgeous Bacchus dry. You can also spend a lovely afternoon on one of their vineyard tours.
Close to home Polgoon produces wines, ciders and juices from their vineyards and orchards just outside Penzance. Again, they offer tour and tasting sessions, and their newly-opened Polgoon Kitchen is a wonderful place for a laid-back meal.
Cornwall has several excellent cider producers and breweries. We’re spoiled for choice, so we thought we’d focus on the most local ones: St Ives Cider in nearby Trencrom, and St Ives Brewery, who even have a brew called “Knill by Mouth” (named for the monument that’s on our logo!). The microbrewery has recently opened a superbly-sited eatery, the Brewhouse Café, above the town.
One we do have to mention outside of St Ives is of course the iconic Rattler cider – which must be pronounced in the Cornish accent for full effect!! Produced at Healey’s Cider Farm, only a few miles off the A30 in Penhallow, this Cornish cider has gained national recognition for its cloudy yet refreshing taste. Healeys is constantly developing new flavours, with Pineapple being the most recent one to hit the shelves. As well as sampling at the farm, it’s a family friendly destination that offers tractor rides during the peak season so there’s no excuse not to visit.
For a uniquely Cornish drink, head to Newlyn and try some Cornish Mead, which is available in a range of flavours as well as the traditional honey.
The brilliant bean
We have some incredibly good chocolate producers in Cornwall. In St Ives, call into I Should Coco on Fore Street, where they produce some fantastically imaginative designs in their little kitchen – and you can even book onto a chocolate making workshop! For healthy chocolate – and no, we didn’t dream that – grab a bar of Raw Chocolate Pie from The Cornish Candy Shoppe on Fore Street. Dairy, gluten and soya-free, their chocolate is a real treat for those who can’t normally eat it – and it tastes lovely.
Over on The Lizard, near beautiful Mullion Cove, you can visit Trenance Chocolate factory. Watch their delicious chocolates being hand-made by the team, then stock up in their shop (and their café is a great stopping off point of you’re walking this stunning stretch of coast path). You can also buy their chocolates at Trevaskis Farm Shop.
Located near Falmouth, Chocolarder import the beans direct from the farmers and carry out the whole process in their small factory. Watch out for their Wild Gorse Flower flavour – the taste of summer hedgerows.
Many local shops stock Kernow Chocolate’s bars, which are loved for their distinctive, railway art-style packaging and make great presents to take back upcountry.
The Cornish cuppa
Tregothnan Estate near the Fal Estuary is the first place in Britain to actually grow as well as manufacture tea. The micro-climate in this wooded valley provides the perfect warm and wet conditions for tea plants. Cornish Tea may not grow their own leaves; however their beverages definitely have a Cornish soul. Try their popular Smugglers’ Brew for a hearty cuppa.
If you prefer coffee, try another local company’s wares. Cornish Coffee hand-roast their beans in nearby Redruth, and supply many of our local bars and restaurants with their delicious drinks. Whichever cuppa you choose, don’t forget to add a scone or two, topped with jam and then a good dollop of Rodda’s Clotted Cream (or for a lighter snack, just dunk a Furniss biscuit).
Something a bit more savoury
We don’t all have a sweet tooth – and a cool pint of St Austell Korev goes down a treat with hot chili dipping sauce from the Cornish Chili Company and a plate of Popti Cornish Bakehouse seaweed thins.
There is plenty of choice when it comes to Cornish-made chutneys, sauces and spices and we’re lucky enough to stock one of our favourites here in the campsite shop. The Cornish Larder Company offer a unique selection of products having teamed up with fellow Cornish drink brands to produce some super tasty recipes. The Spiced Apple Chutney uses St Ives Cider for that extra rich flavour and the iconic Tarquins Gin can be found in the Orange Marmalade and Strawberry Jam. They haven’t gone unnoticed after recently being awarded 2020 Taste of the West Gold for Tomato and Chilli Relish, which uses St Ives Rum and Crab Shack’s very own Dead Man’s Fingers Spiced Rum. What are they going to come up with next!?!
With hundreds of acres of farmland covering our stunning county, Cornwall has a great range of dairies, and we’ve got one right on our doorstep. Trink Dairy is owned and run by the Knowles family. It produces pasteurised, non-homogenised cow’s milk from a herd that that grazes just a few miles from Polmanter. Trink opens its doors for dairy tours and also runs a local farmers market (check their Facebook page for details).
You won’t go short of local cheese while you’re in Cornwall. Trevarrian Cornish Creamery in Newquay offers superb creamy cheeses, including camembert, brie and goat’s cheeses (as sold in our own campsite shop!). If it’s a hard cheese you’re after, Cornish Cheesy Company’s blue cheese is a must, or try the famous Davidstow Cheddar for a classic taste.
If you’re a proper cheese lover, don’t leave the county without sampling Cornish Yarg by Lynher Dairies. There are delicious classic and garlic varieties, and both come wrapped in nettles.
A celebration of Cornish Food in St Ives
The famous St Ives Food & Drink Festival takes place in September this year, and has been timed to coincide with the town’s other festival (the St Ives September Festival). If you’re in St Ives between the 17th and the 19th, a visit to Porthminster Beach is a must, which is where the festival is based.
For these few days, the beach becomes the scene of the best street food (if you can call it that) in Cornwall, with rows of cheerfully coloured tents selling all sorts of food and drink.
There are also cookery demos from brilliant chefs, live music, and an artisan market, plus activities for kids. And of course, it’s taking place on one of the country’s most beautiful beaches. Not here that week? Don’t worry – as you’ve already read, it’s easy to get hold of fabulous Cornish produce.
So there you go – some of Cornwall’s more unusual foodie offerings, and we hope you enjoy them. And for some of these goodies, you won’t have to travel far as we stock them right here on-site. See our full list of Cornish produce currently available in our shop.
Omlowenhewgh agas boes!**
** Bon appétit!