Tag Archives: Polkerris

A Perfect Day

Staring down the barrel of another winter, there’s nothing for it but to wrap ourselves in chunky knits and warm memories.

Before summer left us, I had a magical day of the absolutely perfect variety, that will no doubt haunt me for years to come in deep sleep and desktop daydreams.

It was a perfect day in a perfect week spent at Menabilly with my family. And it started very early – before the night had even left us. Armed with a torch and binoculars, I raced morning up the cliff path to watch the sun rise over the sea in a symphony of pink and orange. The silence was so complete that I could hear the fishermen talking from their boats on the waves below.

Menabilly sunrise1

Menabilly sunrise2

Menabilly sunrise3

If I’d had my paints with me I probably would have caught pneumonia on that hillside desperately trying to capture the wash of colour and the explosive moment the sun breached the horizon in a blaze of gold. Thankfully for my physical and mental health I made do with just my camera, and I arrived back at the cottage in time to catch the rest of my family finishing the last crumbs of breakfast. Some more hungry than others, we jumped in the car and headed into a fairytale – otherwise known as Tintagel. The legendary seat of King Arthur is perched on a Cornish cliff top on the north coast, and its rugged beauty had me immediately head over heels. The sky was blue, the sun was shining, and there were ruins, rocks, waterfalls, caves and beaches to bounce around. It was my idea of absolute heaven.

Tintagel 1

Tintagel 2

Tintagel 3

Tintagel 4

Tintagel 5

Waterfall at Tintagel

Cave at Tintagel

Me on the rocks at Tintagel

When I was done clambering upon all that there was to clamber upon, and had finished imagining round tables, swords in stones, ladies in lakes, and all things Arthurian, we headed to Polkerris for dinner at my favourite restaurant – Sam’s on the Beach.

That night Sam’s outdid themselves: my huge bowl of white wine soaked spaghetti was so delicious that dignity went utterly out the window and I ended up wearing more sauce than makeup; they seemed to be exclusively playing a list of my favourite songs; and as we laughed, chatted, and enjoyed each other’s company we had the best seat in the house to watch the sun sink into the harbour.

Sam's on the Beach

Sunset at Polkerris

Chlo at Sam's on the Beach

Mum and Dad

Olives at Sam's on the Beach

Best pasta of my life

Sunset at Polkerris

So the perfect day ended as all perfect days should – with full tummies and full memory cards. And when winter bites, and you catch me with a glazed expression on my face, this is where I’ll really be.

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Cornish Calories

As well as my (highly dubious) theory that calories don’t count when you’re on holiday, I also have an inkling that everything tastes better. Maybe it’s because you’re happy and relaxed (maybe it’s because you’re in denial about not gaining weight) but whatever the reason, I always enjoy food more when I’m away.

And the food in my favourite holiday spot never disappoints.

First off, let me take you to Fowey. The little town is a few miles from our slice-of-heaven cottage on the beach, and it oozes charm at such a rate that even short visits have the dangerous potential to melt your heart into a little puddle of gloop. My favourite place for brunch is no exception.

Welcome to Pinky Murphy’s.

Pinky Murphy's
You can bring your dogs inside, but you must leave your grumpiness at the door.

Pinky Murphy's
Once inside you would be forgiven for wondering if some kind of retro bomb had recently detonated. The telly might be showing surf videos, or old Tom and Jerry cartoons. The sofas are a hotchpotch of different shapes and colours, and the tables are named after musicians rather than numbered. And there is stuff everywhere. It’s a beautiful mess.

Pinky Murphy's

Pinky Murphy's
We plonked ourselves down at Bob Marley and ordered our elevenses. You can just glimpse the little galley kitchen behind my dad’s smile (it’s hard not to smile in Pinky’s!) which was expelling a steady stream of mouth-watering-ness.

Dad in Pinky Murphy's

The tea arrived…

Mum in Pinky Murphy's

And then the teacakes!

Toasted teacake and jam

Sis and I were two happy bunnies at this point!

Gem and Chlo at Pinky Murphy's

Toasted teacake and jam

In fact, I may have enjoyed myself just a tiny bit too much…

Gem the jam fiend
That’s my not-even-a-little-bit-embarrassed smile.

Still feeling a little bit peckish after that huge pot of jam? A dinner visit to  Sam’s on the Beach over in Polkerris will soon fix that, if you can bear to drag yourself away from Fowey. (If not, Sam’s have a restaurant in the middle of Fowey too.)

Stop to stroke this handsome chap if you see him on your way in…

Ginger Cat
…And then come on inside. My dad’s even holding the door open for you, look!

Sam's on the Beach
Sam’s was the Polkerris lifeboat station from 1859-1922, so the back wall is a huge window showing a fantastic panorama of the harbour, and the ceilings are high enough to fit the old Fowey lifeboat inside – and to make me with my love of space and light very content indeed.  

Sam's on the Beach

Mum at Sam's on the Beach
The décor’s pretty lovely, too.

Sam's on the Beach

Sam's on the Beach
Sam’s is a seafood restaurant but they do a damn good pizza, so no matter what floats your boat or tickles your fancy, perusing the menu is bound to make you smile – as demonstrated nicely by my mum who was positively beaming at this point…

Mum at Sam's on the Beach
We ordered bread and marinated olives to share for our starter (and my family forgave me for eating more than my fair share of the green ones)…

Olives at Sam's on the Beach
… And then I got down to business with this bad boy.

Pizza at Sam's on the Beach
The artichoke hearts, aubergines, olives, onions, tomatoes and rocket topped pizza went down a treat, until I was feeling decidedly stuffed. But it’s a well known fact that human beings have a separate stomach for dessert…

Beachboker Glory at Sam's on the Beach
That, my friend, is magical mixture of ice cream, chocolate sauce, cherry sauce, and marshmallows, named a Beachboker Glory. Calories? Never heard of ’em.