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Restaurant review: Old Custom House, Padstow

Published on June 1, 2016
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Padstow may be synonymous with Rick Stein and his epicurean empire, but with top notch  pub grub, sumptuous seafood, contemporary bedrooms and knockout views across the harbour, the Old Custom House certainly lives up to the town’s foodie credentials

Old Custom House

One of St Austell Brewery’s stable of trusty dining pubs, the historic freehouse in the heart of Padstow ramped up the luxe levels by opening a slick new oyster and champagne bar this spring.

VISIT FOR a taste of Cornish glamour – minus the stuffy atmosphere – in the refurbished Cally Bar. Dive into a platter of fabulously fresh Porthilly oysters at the seafood bar, sip crisp champagne in the evening haze and indulge in a spot of people watching over Padstow Harbour from the floor to ceiling window – Instagram inspiration at its finest.

DON’T VISIT for a quiet break on the coast. This is a popular pub, slap bang in the centre of Cornwall’s holiday hubbub. Instead, embrace the lively nature of the characterful town and join the locals for a cheeky pint in the bar after dinner.

WE LIKED the private lounge with comfy sofas in our room, perfect for collapsing in  (away from the hum of activity in the bar below), after a tiring afternoon sipping Cornish cider in the sun.

INSIDER’S TIP If you’re an oyster virgin, try them lightly fried in crisp panko  bread crumbs first to test the waters, then go the whole hog and slurp ‘em down au naturel.

What we ate (dinner)

Starter Porthilly oysters with fresh lemon and Tabasco
Main Cornish dressed crab, soft boiled egg, salad
Pud Salted caramel cheesecake

Kathryn Lewis 

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