Food and drink

Whether you’re looking for a quick snack en route to the beach or an elegant sit-down meal to celebrate a special occasion, Cornwall is guaranteed to have something that suits your tastes. Carrick Roads is particularly well known for its succulent Falmouth Bay oysters, but you can also sample locally caught fish, scallops, and crabs at the many establishments specialising in seafood. A number of restaurants can be found right by the water, giving diners a beautiful view to go along with their meals.

Many Cornish establishments use only locally sourced, sustainable ingredients, which means that your meal will not only be tasty, but eco-friendly as well. You can’t go to Cornwall without trying a pasty or a Cornish cream tea. If you really want to treat yourself, you can visit one of the several Michelin-recognised restaurants that rival any eatery found in London. On the other hand, you can keep it low key with a visit to one of the many local cafes where you can sip a cup of tea and nibble on delicious homemade pastries. 

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There is no shortage of excellent eateries near the Penryn and Truro Campuses, cumulatively offering a range of culinary genres. Penryn’s Miss Peapod’s specialises in sustainable food served up with a side of river views and, on many weekend evenings, live performances. Falmouth boasts a number of restaurants—including Oliver’s, Samphire, Wildebeest, The Shack, and Cribb’s—owned and operated by local chefs, as well as franchises of popular chains such as Zizzi’s and Pizza Express. Prior to taking in a show at Truro’s Hall for Cornwall, diners might drop by to Hooked! (which has a sister restaurant in Falmouth) or Manning’s. Gravy Boesti and Tabb’s, recommended by international food publications, are also excellent choices. 

Penryn, Falmouth, and Truro all host a number of nationally known food retailers. However, Falmouth and Truro are also home to several specialty stores where shoppers can purchase more unusual ingredients, such as items needed for international recipes, or food that has been grown or produced locally. There is a farmers’ market at The Moor in Falmouth each Tuesday, and another at Lemon Key in Truro on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

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There is such an abundance of cafes here, you’ll have a hard time choosing where to indulge in your first cream tea; in fact, you might end up having several just so you can sample all the different venues. Particularly beloved establishments in Falmouth include Dolly’s, Gylly Beach Cafe, Espressini, and Picnic. Destinations in Truro include Charlotte’s Tea House, Fig Café, Lemon Tree Café and Bistro, and, for spectacular views, the cafes at Hall for Cornwall and the Truro Cathedral. Several pasty shops—such as Rowe’s, Warren’s, Oggy Oggy, and Choak’s—can be found in the vicinity of the Cornwall campuses. There are also a number of venues selling fish and chips—including the award-winning Harbour Lights in Falmouth.

Food plays a central role in several events near the Cornwall campuses. First and foremost is the Falmouth Oyster Festival (October), an annual celebration of Cornish seafood. Local ingredients and cuisine also play a prominent role in Falmouth Week (August) and the Falmouth Folk and Cider Fayre (March). Both Falmouth and Truro hold Oktoberfest-style events in the autumn. Truro also hosts the Great Cornish Food Festival (September).