Seasonal seafood and inspired by the Devon landscape, plus a summer pudding worthy of Audrey Hepburn!
In A Word:
Anyone with an eye for a view would adore the superb views overlooking the English Channel, and beautiful sunsets. Within its contemporary nautical theme, the restaurant almost seems like fine dining on a cruise ship, and should appeal to both locals and guests, with its variety of local seafood dishes, including hand picked Salcombe crab. Whilst certainly luxury, the rooms are a contemporary, no-frills kind of luxury, which makes them sleek and sophisticated.
Driving to the hotel at Soar Mill Cove was so much fun because we had to hug roads that curved through the Devon countryside. Reminiscent of the Jurassic coast just round the corner from it, the route was ludicrously scenic. In collusion with this, when we stopped off for fuel, my stand-in companion for The ‘Tache, who has collaborated with me on her name The Gash, and I had a chat with a Devonian Emmerdale-esque character who was cracking wise about the difference between Devon and Cornwall.
Proud to have once had Audrey Hepburn staying, the hotel is nestled into the winding roads of Soar Mill Cove, just outside of Salcombe. Having won spots in the Good Hotel Guide, and being recognised by Sawday’s, this hotel is the epitome of comfort and luxury; in which we felt most welcome.
It’s customary for guests to receive a cream tea on arrival, but as we had arrived after a day of shoeless dancing in the hailstones at Bibury in the Cotswolds, replacing said shoes at Bristol and cruising through winding lanes to a 90s indie soundtrack, we were nearer to tea time than cream tea. Shame, because (SHOCKER:) I err on the Devonian side when it comes to cream teas, usually spreading cream first.
What we did receive on arriving was a lovely welcome card from the family who run the hotel, and room service of a nice cup of tea.
Largely glass and wood and stone, the building fits its surroundings, in amongst the bright gorse bushes that set the cliffs on fire. Even the colours in the décor have been picked to mimic their surroundings, which display a palette of tranquil greens and blues, as well as the wild flower colours and magical sunset hues.
Respectful and attentive, the staff in this family run hotel were excellent, and really made us feel at home. My camera started to mess around during the meal and the friendly waiter was trying to help us fix it. Also, I had a deadline the next day and was busy working, and the staff were so kind, we were given grace to stay past checkout. These things made our stay at luxury hotel Soar Mill Cove extremely special, and I will enjoy visiting again with The ‘Tache later in the year. I often emphasise the tricky balance between loitering too much and being attentive, but throughout our stay, these guys got it just right.
Bread and butter
Eating out as frequently as TB allows me to, I enjoy everything about the meal, including seeing each hotel’s take on bread and butter. One that shall remain nameless served us up pre made bread and margarine, which in a throwback way was kind of funny, but really a bit cringeable compared to what was served up here. Homemade rolls and hand churned butter served in a cloche were indicative of the extra mile that Soar Mill Cove were prepared to go to provide luxury and comfort to their guests.
Having bumped into the man behind the shell of Favis of Salcombe at a food fair, I was thrilled to see their handpicked crab on the starters menu. Kept pretty simple, with just some lemon mayonnaise to accompany the delicious meat, this was one of the better starters I’ve had, in essence because of its simplicity.
Rose had a fish cake, which was liberally decorated with pea shoots, and was made from fresh fish caught in the bay. Being able to see the trawlers cast shadows across the sea, and know that was where the fish was coming from made it all the more special.
Fruit of the sea
As is pretty much customary when eating at a hotel with fantastic views, I had a main course of mixed seafood. Local mussels, scallops and also shell on prawns were just some of the delights in a Pouilly-Fumé sauce. Cooked to perfection, and served with local vegetables, this was a fantastic main course, which I am reminiscing over right now.
A choc in the dark
Having spent a large part of the day listening to 80s power ballads from the likes of Ozzy, “A Shot in the Dark” Osbourne, it was a punny day. Most of our in-jokes are the kind that only close friends understand, but since I had customary chocolate and the camera was fucked, my dessert was worthy of the Ozzy-fied title. Rich, dark and full of flavour, the fondant met my expectations of being gooey, warm and dark.
The Gash had lemon posset, which was just the right amount for our full bellies to contend with, as we were on a 3 day gastro-nanza.
An impressive cocktail menu was ready for ordering as room service, or to drink in the amazing lounge or restaurant. Often locally sourced and always high quality, everything from the fresh milk served with teas and coffees to the Devonshire cider, and soft drinks from Luscombe, reflected the level of class and comfort offered at Soar Mill Cove.
Cocktails were not cheap, but sipping a cold one as you relax with the view as the sun goes down is a truly priceless experience.
Enormous beds, and good sized suites characterise the special accommodation at Soar Mill Cove. Decorated in comfortable contemporary, with luxury bedding and subtle bathing products, the rooms had everything a guest could need. With free WiFi and DVD rental, plus super TVs, guests are assured plenty of luxury to relax and unwind within the hotel, as well as in the surrounding beach and town.
One of the most relaxing and stunning places we have had the fortune to visit, Soar Mill Cove is the optimum in comfort and luxury with a refined menu to boot. Decorated almost as if you were within a cruiser, the views help position you within the sea.
Local seafood and affable staff are just two reasons which resonate with why Hollywood’s golden girl Audrey Hepburn would have holidayed at Salcombe and why anyone would want to now.
Located just 3 miles away from the popular and chic village of Salcombe, Soar Mill Cove is only a 20 minute drive from Totnes Station, and close to both Plymouth and Exeter. Accessible and friendly, the hotel also has a spa, which sounded amazing, but we didn’t have time to review! Better luck next time!
Soar Mill Cove Hotel,
For bookings or information phone 01548 561566 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The views and the atmosphere are spectacular.