When mum invited me as her +1 for a weekend of fun in Cornwall with her friends (my stepdad, fortunately for me, was busy), I was more than happy to oblige. With 50-odd guests expected and a 3-day party planned, I knew it was going to be a good’un. Having agreed that travelling there by train was our best option, both in terms of time & comfort, I booked our tickets a month in advance. Lo and behold, of course First Great Western decided to strike the only weekend that either of us had actually needed to take the train all year. Flummoxed, we tried to come up with our next best escape route out of the city. Every option that mum and I could come up with was pretty dire, if I’m honest, so it’s fair to say that I was over the moon when she called to say that our fabulous host, David, had offered to fly us down in his helicopter Thursday evening – now we were talking!
We were in for such a treat – all I can say is, England is so beautiful. Mum was picked up first, and was lucky enough to fly over the City of London en route to collect me, zooming by the O2 arena, the Shard, over Tower Bridge, and other iconic landmarks.
But my jealousy evaporated entirely as soon as we got off the ground from Canary Wharf, and I experienced the most incredible one & a half hour journey of my life.
We flew over plotted neighbourhoods and rolling hills.
I never knew England was so green & lush; it was amazing to see!
And then the greenery came to a halt, as we flew over built-up areas surrounding snaking rivers.
It was awesome getting to listen in on the radio and hear David do his helicopter-talk; it really is all “echo”, “roger”, “alpha”, and was very impressive. Aside from needing to be down with the lingo, however, he made driving a helicopter seem an absolute breeze, map reading both old-school style and via his iPad whilst steering us smoothly high up in the sky.
And then it was back to quilt patchwork fields & meadows, setting mum off belting various snippets of Jerusalem (who doesn’t love a good hymn?).
My favourite part of the journey, though, was the latter half, as we travelled above the sea and absorbed the ever-changing coastline.
^ He looked very lonely out there in the deep blue all on his own – I hope he wasn’t lost!
^ That being the sea & sky in one.
David and his wife, Karen, had a beach party planned for the weekend, and David had set his sights on an isolated stretch of beach for the big event. We circled low to take a closer look.
All I could think to myself was BRING ON THE WEEKEND! This clearly wasn’t going to be your average beach party, and I was super excited to see what our fabulous hosts had in store for us.
I honestly wouldn’t have thought it possible, but as we flew over idyllic St Mawes, I fell in love with England and the seaside just that little bit more.
And then it was time to touchdown.
What a ride. Karen picked us up and drove us the 5-minute journey to their incredible hotel, The Idle Rocks, where all the guests would have the pleasure of staying for the weekend.
Mum and I checked in to our sea view room and quickly took stock of our incredible surroundings.
The Idle Rocks hotel stole my heart right from the very beginning, with its extreme generosity and attention to detail. I mean, they even have their own rock made!
Everything about the décor was unique, seaside-esque and tasteful. I loved it.
Mum & I were quick to appreciate, however, as David & Karen were waiting for us downstairs in the main restaurant.
After a short & sweet perusal of the daily-changing menu all four of us opted for the light and healthy sounding starter of ‘Heirloom Tomatoes, Mascarpone, Pesto, Olive’ (£9.00). I swear to God, I would put this plate of food in my top 10 dishes of all time – the quality of the ingredients could not have been more noted – the flavour of the tomatoes, together with the exceptionally creamy & sweet mascarpone, tart olives, torn basil, homemade pesto, and crisp, fried bread, had me in absolute food ecstasy. It really showcased the meaning of good, simple food.
For mains, I had yet another astonishingly good dish; ‘Roast Cod, Bouillabaisse, Braised baby Fennel, Cornish New Potatoes’ (£24.00). The thick, succulent piece of cod was cooked to perfection, and so delicious together with the texture of the fresh clams & mussels and flavour of the bouillabaisse.
If you’ve been reading the blog for a while, or read my review of Galvin la Chapelle, you will know that I detest boiled potatoes, but these crushed, herbed, homegrown babies, were pretty decent in a bath of moreish seafood sauce.
Us girls shared the ‘White Chocolate Cheesecake’ (£9.00) and ‘Spiced Rhubarb Ice’ (£8.00). I don’t even like cheesecake, but the cheesecake was insane – so light and creamy, with the layer of raspberry jelly adding just the right fruity touch.
However, the ‘Spiced Rhubarb Ice’ was not really to my taste. It was quite ‘icy’ (surprising, I know), but in a crunchy, crystal kind of way, which just wasn’t really for me. Still, mum loved it, which just goes to show how wonderfully different we all are.
It was nearing midnight by the time we finished dinner and, after a long day, mum and I were more than happy to retire to our room. We crawled into our gloriously comfy bed and fell asleep to the sound of the crashing waves. It was the best night’s sleep that I’ve had in a very, very long time.