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Harbour House, Flushing

Rosanna Rothery discovers a flaming delicious pub menu in a Cornish harbourside pub

What’s the draw?

Superb seafood from the River Fal, an in‑house bakery, stonking cocktail list and a chef who is passionate about flame‑driven flavour. These are just some of the epicurean enticements putting the newly refurbed Harbour House firmly on Cornwall’s food map.

A short ferry ride from Falmouth, the Flushing pub is the latest project for seasoned restaurateurs Tamara Costin and William Speed (they also own Beachhouse in South Milton and Schoolhouse in Mothecombe). This new venture is growing an enviable reputation for great food, yet the pair have also managed to retain its rustic village‑pub vibe.

If you’re lucky enough to get a table next to the open kitchen you can watch the flame‑filled action taking place, although a window seat overlooking the waters in which your hot‑smoked seafood was recently caught is hard to beat.

Harbour House Flushing food

Who’s cooking?

Andrew Tuck, former head chef at St Kew Inn, who has featured on BBC Two’s Great British Menu and Rick Stein’s Cornwall. His creativity, flair and love of open‑fire cooking are put to great use in Harbour House’s reimagined coastal menu, where he uses super‑fresh produce from the surrounding land and sea (we’re talking metres not miles).

What to order?

Our pickled gurnard starter was exquisitely subtle in flavour and complemented by the sharpness of local rhubarb and the earthy sweetness of hazelnuts. We also loved a charred‑leek dish doused in smoky baba ganoush.

For mains we opted for delicate red mullet, fresh from a dayboat, which was offset with ‘nduja, foraged purslane and the briny beauty of Salty Fingers.

By contrast, a meaty 40oz 60‑day sirloin on the bone (smoked in a wood‑fired oven and finished over embers) was smothered in rich XO butter and accompanied by buttered greens with pangritata made with beef fat.

Andrew even brought flames to the fore in puddings such as burnt‑toffee tart and smoked pannacotta with poached rhubarb.

Need to know

To experience Andrew’s unbridled creativity but without the full sit‑down experience, perch at the bar where a knowledgeable front‑of‑house team serve small dishes such as briny Fal native oysters three ways: raw with cider shallots, in ginger‑beer granita and in a crispy buttermilk with fermented chilli mayo.

There are plenty of local sips to explore (as well as special‑occasion secret cellar wines) as you tuck into bar snacks and house‑baked breads served with apple‑smoked butter.

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