Trengilly Wartha, and Constantine General Stores.

OK, no big walks involved in today’s expedition, just great retail, eye care and F&B experiences.

We’re big fans of Falmouth, and although we wouldn’t contemplate leaving St Just for the place, we do like a trip over there a couple of times a year.

Today the drive was initiated by the need to go to our wonderful optician Alexander Miller on the old High Street. We’ve been using Alexander Miller since they opened and I’m always impressed by the personal service and gentle manner of both Andrew the optometrist, and Mark the optician. I now have a new pair of vary-focals to get used to – that’ll take a while.

En route we noticed new, but subtle, signs for the Trengilly Wartha, a cracking pub I used to go to decades ago, and we decided we’d return there for lunch.

The Trengilly Wartha

The Trengilly Wartha

The Trengilly is sort of nowhere, and that’s part of it’s charm. There is very little passing traffic and so it always has to perform very well to bring people in. I was delighted that it felt much as I remembered it, and particularly pleased to drink Potion No.9 from the Penzance Brewing Company in Crowlas. It used to be Courage Directors that was our favourite tipple there – no sign of it yesterday though.

The Trengilly is known for its excellent food. We were going for a big dinner with friends and so we shared a scampi and chips while reading the paper. It would have been easy to have whiled away the afternoon there, especially if there wasn’t the need to drive. One day maybe.

Our next stop was the other big attraction of the area. Constantine General Stores.

Does that sound boring?

Well, unless you know about the place then it probably does, but despite appearances from the outside, this is no ordinary village shop.

Beyond the good range of local produce is the biggest and best selection of wines and spirits you’ll find anywhere in the south west. Such is the reputation and influence of this humble store that new and interesting spirits such as Tarquin’s Gin when it launched can sell out the day they arrive. There are over 1000 whiskies, 150 rums, and more than 50 gins. There are also more than 1,000 wines and champagnes too. Tastings are regular and while we were there a couple were sampling many varied gins, and seemed to be taking a bottle of each they tried.

If mum and dad need an excuse to get over to Constantine and visit the stores, or the pub, then there’s a great excuse down the road at Gweek – take the family to the Seal Sanctuary and everyone will have a good day out. Take a walk along the Helford while you’re there too, it’s completely different to our more rugged side of Cornwall.