Muddy eats: Prawn on the Lawn, Padstow
Prawn on the Lawn was recommended by a girlfriend, and I’m literally jubilant to have made its acquaintance. Nestled down Duke Street in Padstow is the restaurant cum fishmonger with a great London vibe going on.
The first Prawn on the Lawn seafood bar opened in Islington a few years back but last spring, owners Katie and Rick decided to move to Cornwall. Lucky us, they’ve set up a second restaurant, Prawn On the Lawn Padstow! It follows a similar format to the restaurant in London – being a fully licensed fishmonger and seafood bar with the addition of a hot food license. This has allowed Rick to experiment with different dishes, making the most of the local Lobster and Crab and cooking them on the charcoal grill installed in the kitchen. Still a small operation with only 24 covers, the menu changes every day and aims to be as sustainable as possible, working with local suppliers in Padstow.
The fish counter is really popular, and offers filleted and prepared fish and seafood depending on what has been landed.
The day we popped in, we’d visited the National Lobster Hatchery whom Prawn on the Lawn supports via the Hatchery’s BOSOF – Buy One Set One Free campaign. They add a discretionary donation to every restaurant bill which supports the work at the Hatchery. Most of their shellfish is landed in Padstow so it’s a way of giving something back to the sea which is a jolly nice sentiment.
The Padstow venue is a twin in terms of looks to its London sister, so it has a hard industrial theme similar restaurants are hesitant to adopt, but Prawn On The Lawn pulls it off, and I know It’ll appeal you you lot. There’s a sort of nautical-egdy-industrial-metro-thing going on in simple black and white scheme. It doesn’t need chandeliers and bright flocked wall paper – the food is all the art needed.
We started with complimentary local fizz (thanks Katie) which I can totes recommend. This was the Trevibban Mill ‘Black Ewe’ – a sparkling white Brut made right in Padstow. Lemony and slightly sweet it really complimented my oysters. They also serve fizz from Italy, Spain and France, a comprehensive wine list, aperitifs and digestifs, spirits, beers, ciders and soft drinks so you are spoilt for choice.
So what did we eat? Full on seafood tapas in all its sexy glory. Those are battered oysters (heavenly), that I could of quite happily munched all day long – infact I only let Mr MC have one of those, and *may* have stabbed him in the hand with my fork. Don’t worry, he got to eat most of the moules and the Thai crab salad, which was so bloody briliant he’s been trying to recreate it at home (and failing!). We also shared some plaice with choritzo which was beautifully light and tender.
The Padstow staff are lovely local chaps, from Padstow and the surrounding villages. Friendly, professional and knowledgeable about their respective crafts. This is a muddy favourite – I’ll be popping in for lunch on my next shopping trip.
THE MUDDY VERDICT:
Good for: Seafood lovers of course! Fans of clean elegant design and unpretentious dining. Locals wanting good preped fish to take home. Late dining – last table from 10pm which is fab.
Not for: Those who don’t like seafood. While there are veggie dishes, there’s no meat alternative. Al fresco dining. There’s no outside space sadly. Those who favour bling, pastels or chinz. Sunday Monday dining – tis closed. I wouldn’t bring my kids, but only because I’m a bit tight – they’d easily chomp their way through the menu before I’d finished my fizz.
£££: Comparable with up country prices. Small plates (tapas) from £7.50. Trevibban Mill ‘Black Ewe’ £60 a bottle. This is a little bit of London cool on the coast. You gets what you pays for.
Tuesday – Saturday from 10am (fish counter) 12pm (dining). Last table 10pm Prawn on the Lawn, 11 Duke St, Padstow PL28 8AB