Crash and burn: five of Cornwall’s best fireside spots
If you’re salt-licked from a blustery coastal stomp, chilled after a winter surf or rain-beaten from a moorland romp, few things beat the Cornish cold better than a venue with a log fire or woodburner.
The best-planned winter activities should factor in a fire, be it a hearth-side Sunday lunch, a cosy pint and pork scratchings or just a large slab of cake and coffee.
Lusty Glaze: The Woodburner sessions
Set at the bottom of a giddy 133 steps, this private beach is much more than the sum of its beautiful parts. Activity centre, restaurant with a brand new chef (ex-Master Chef The Professionals contestant Nat Tallents), self-catering accommodation and one of the best music venues in the county, Lusty Glaze embraces winter with the Woodburner Sessions. These are intimate fireside gigs in a cosy beachside venue, with or without food, and with stunning views in the daylight. For more, go to lustyglaze.co.uk
The Crown Inn, Lanlivery
Originally built to house the masons and builders who were constructing the village church, The Crown Inn is one of Cornwall’s oldest pubs, dating from the 12th century. An ancient well, exposed stone walls and a huge fireplace, as well as some tasty pub food, make this the obvious choice for walkers looking for some sustenance and warmth on The Saints’ Way. Opt for the bar on the left as you walk in for a taste of local life and a prime fireside seat.
Baker Tom’s, Pool
Recent, and very deserving, winner of Cornwall Life’s Best Food Product of the Year, Tom Hazzledine has come a long way since he baked his first four loaves for his local farmshop. With bakeries in Wadebridge, Falmouth and Truro, Pool is the hub of his business and now has a bakery and cafe stacked with bread, pasties and cakes fresh out of the ovens. Settle back in the armchairs in front of the log burner for breakfast, lunch or just a mid-morning or afternoon snack (the pasties and blondies are highly recommended) and you won’t want to leave. For more go to bakertom.co.uk.
Woods Cafe, Cardinham Woods
Originally a woodsman’s cottage, Wood’s Cafe is tucked away in the heart of the Forestry Commission’s maintained woodland. Walkers, families and some serious mountain bikers fill the car park at weekends, making it the perfect excuse for re-fuelling after some outdoors exertion. Choose from the specials’ menu for lunch, or opt for the tried and tested soup and sausage roll, followed by a choice of freshly baked cakes. On a sunny winter’s day, it’s possible to sit outside, but the log fire calls on colder days.
The Gurnard’s Head
The Inkin brothers know what they are doing when it comes to hospitality. Just outside Zennor on the rugged Penwith peninsula, The Gurnard’s Head offers a welcome and warming respite from the winds and weather that have shaped this dramatic coastline. Open to non-residents for breakfast, lunch, dinner or just refreshments, it is an ideal venue to factor in after a long coastal walk. With the fires burning from breakfast, it is well worth setting off early to get back in time for coffee and a kipper by the hearth.