Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen has been sat on the cliff at Watergate Bay in Cornwall for some time now. I’ve been for breakfast before which was very nice and given it’s beachfront positioning, when the weather’s good, the views are a real beauty. This visit however was at night, in the pouring rain, but it still felt atmospheric.
The restaurant was packed and although being a little too noisy for my getting-on-a-bit parents, the vibe was jolly. Waiters are young and enthusiastic and in the kitchen, a lot of the brigade are young apprentices found through the Cornwall Food Foundation, Fifteen’s charity .
We opted for the 5 course tasting menu (£65) after a pretty hard sell (possibly too hard?) from our waiter – although charming he was. But first, I couldn’t resist ordering some pig ears from the a la carte menu. Sadly they weren’t crispy enough and got stuck in my teeth which wasn’t great.
Crudo of hand dived scallop was a lovely and light way to kick things off. Some thin shavings of Amalfi lemon were not overpowering in the slightest. Mozzarella di bufala with peas and pecorino was another light nibble.
Taglierini of crab and pangrattato (that’s breadcrumbs to you and I) was superb. The pasta was freshly made and some of it had been coloured black using squid ink – a real comforting plate of food. Wood fired beef with polenta was the last savoury dish and it was just a shame the meat was overcooked – more grey than pink.
For pud, Amedei flourless chocolate cake, which was a nutty little number. With the salted caramel sauce and creme fraiche I was in puddingy heaven.
There were a few niggles about our meal and a couple of things that could have been better but the whole experience is really rather charming. Plus, all the profits from Fifteen go back to the charity, so you almost feel you’re doing some good by eating there. You could do far worse than eat here on a trip to Cornwall.