South Devon Holiday Update 2011
Published: Sep 15th, 2011 |
Recently back from south Devon after my annual stay on a farm at Wembury near Plymouth. The weather was kind some of the time and there were visits to some good pubs too.
The Odd Wheel, Wembury
Given it’s location just down the road from the farm it’s not surprising that this was on the agenda. I’m pleased to note that the pub is still attracting locals and tourists after being reopened in late July 2010 following a long closure. There have been some tweaks to the interior and there is now some new play equipment for the younger pub goers as well.
The number of real ales available at any one time has stabilised at 5 all of which are served via hand pump. Courage Best is still a permanent fixture but Sharps, St Austell and local Summerskills beers were available during the week and my takeaway container was busy. The Sharps Honey Gold was superb and my favourite from the week, but all the beers I tried were obviously kept well.
It still saddens me that faced with a good selection of beers there are still people who plump for the John Smiths on keg – aargh!
The Odd Wheel is a popular eating venue now and the food was good but not the best from the week – see The Foxhound below. Booking a table is strongly advised in the evenings during the peak holiday months. There are expensive items on the menu but some cheaper items are there too – and a childrens menu.
Clovelly Bay Inn, Turnchapel
One evening we headed over to Turnchapel after a gap of some years. The road around Staddon Fort provides some breathtaking views over the bay to Plymouth.
Turnchapel is a tiny, cramped little place and I would seriously advise not attempting to drive down the narrow hill to get to the pubs as parking is almost non-existent and finding somewhere to turn round is a challenge too. Having learned from previous visits we parked at the top of the hill and walked down.
There are two pubs in Turnchapel and the Clovelly Bay Inn is the first one you come to – on the left. It has a striking new coat of yellow paint so you shouldn’t miss it. It’s the current (2011) local CAMRA Pub of the Year – an award it stole from the Borringdon Arms just a little further up the road.
Four real ales and a real cider were available. I tried a taster of all the beers and liked the Dartmoor Legend the best followed by the Cottage Wicked Hound. My wife enjoyed the Skinners cider too.
Some might consider the food a little pricey but the quality is superb and the portions are large. The pub was initially quite empty at 6pm but quickly filled up. The atmosphere was very friendly and it would be a superb pub to have as a local. There were big smiles from all the family for the Clovelly Bay Inn.
The Foxhound, Brixton
Walked from the farm in Wembury over to Brixton one evening along the Erme Plym Trail. Our aim was to visit the Foxhound which Ron had kindly recommended to me in the comments for the Odd Wheel, Wembury review. Compared to walking along a regular pavement the walk was perhaps a bit demanding for my 6 year old but even she agreed it was worth it afterwards.
The Foxhound is on the main A379 road in the centre of the village and right next to the chip shop. There are two main bar areas and a small dining room off to one side at the back of the pub.
There were five hand pumps on the bar with some local choices (two from Summerskills) and some from further afield. Booking tables is advisable as the pub does get full of diners.
For the younger children there’s a box of toys. Bizarrely this is placed close to the bar in the larger of the two seating areas. Those wishing a child free drink may prefer the smaller bar on the right as you come through the front door.
We didn’t walk back to Wembury but used the reasonably priced local taxi firm.
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