Having traveled down from Highgate by train to Haslemere in Surrey for a few days to stay with friends, we then drove to their beach house in St Antony, Cornwall, a good 6 hour drive stopping off at their Devon Farm to raid the cellar. He’s a true Wandering palate with a taste for old German Riesling and Southern Rhone reds.
Our first day out fishing yielded one lonely Mackerel, hardly enough for my daughters dinner, necessitating a diversion to the Helford Royal Yacht Club for fish n chips for lunch and a couple of obligatory pints of Doom Bar Ale, brewed by Sharps at Rock, Cornwall – bloody good beer!
So, nothing for it but to visit the local butcher in St Keverne, J. Retallack and Son, where Paul Retallack continues his fathers business for well over 50 years, least our English wandering palate can trace him back to keeping his family in carnivorous heaven since 1958.
They are famous for their Rib of Beef, equally Pork, but we opted for the former, Paul disappearing in to the meat fridge and returning with an entire half carcass over his shoulder, and proceeded to carve off a two rib portion of considerable size.
When was the last time you were in a butcher where the butcher carved it from the carcass in front of you? Moreover from their own herd of cows.
By all accounts, this is about as good as grass feed beef gets in Cornwall, to which I shall report on in due course. Tonight’s menu is in fact mussels that we collected first thing this morning in the estuary of St Antony, a secret spot where the channel bed is laden with mussels, albeit bloody freezing knee deep in the water and our hands almost ceased up after 30 minutes of grappling.
By the way, the weather today in Cornwall was glorious with brilliant sunshine and quite warm (relative) but its 8pm and even though sunset will not be for another 2 hours, its cooled down so much we have the fire lit.