Occombe Farm Café, Paignton

Sue Cade loves the atmosphere, cooking and home-grown nature of dinner at this popular café, now open on Friday evenings

Restaurant Review

Occombe Farm Cafe Terrace

It’s always a pleasure to walk into an eaterie that’s spacious and filled with natural light. Occombe Farm Café does all that with views across the South Hams from its huge windows to boot.

My dinner guest, Julia, treated herself to a glass of Australian Chardonnay and I opted for one of my favourites, a Luscombe Sicilian lemonade. I’m always thrilled when soft drinks of this quality are available for the drivers.

This isn’t somewhere to dine if you’re in a rush. Each plate is freshly prepared by the chef and the wait is well worth it. We both plumped for scallops to start – and plump was the order of the day for these delicious Brixham-caught shellfish. Julia was impressed that the coral had been left on, and jolly tasty it was too, especially with a smidgen of the delicious pea purée.

Julia ordered the steak for her main, my choice was the mushroom risotto. Julia was very taken by the vine tomatoes accompanying her meal, which are grown on the farm. Both plates were piled high, and despite our protestations that we needed to leave room for dessert, we couldn’t stop eating.

Eton mess won out for me. The luscious strawberries were another home-grown ingredient, and I particularly liked the addition of blackcurrants for tartness. Although too early in the season for those to come from the farm, it won’t be long before Occombe-grown blackcurrants make an appearance in the café.

A relaxed service from Sue and Leanne helped to make our experience all the more enjoyable. The café only opens in the evening on a Friday and the menu changes weekly – upcoming menus promise panko squid rings, cranberry and brie Wellington, and pistachio frangipane. I’ll see you there!

Sue loves: the large, bright space, relaxed service, and Occombe-grown ingredients

Sample Menu

Starters

  • Homemade chicken and ham hock terrine, toasted brioche and homemade chutney
  • Greek salad
  • Pan-fried scallops, pea purée and crispy pancetta

Mains

  • Slow-roasted belly pork, wholegrain mash pot, spiced red cabbage, Chantenay carrots and a rich cider jus
  • Slow-roasted lamb shank, fondant potatoes, seasonal vegetables and mint jus
  • Wild mushroom risotto with truffle oil and parmesan shavings

Desserts

  • Occombe Eton mess
  • Crème brûlée with shortbread biscuits
  • West Country cheeses with a selection of savoury biscuits

Prices

Set menu £24.95

Occombe Farm Café
Preston Down Road
Paignton
Devon
TQ3 1RN
01803 696255
countryside-trust.org.uk/occombe/cafe
Sue Cade

Published 25 June 2018

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