After a fantastic albeit short night’s rest at the Mount Haven Hotel, Heather and I feasted on a hearty Full English as we prepared for our soggy day in Cornwall.  Today, we drove the quick half hour to Healey’s Cornish Cyder Farm in a constant drizzle which seemed to worsen as we went inland.  This is a working cider orchard that has begun offering an agri-tourism experience. Leigh met us out in the rain, and he offered us a coffee in the restaurant to cut the chill and warm up while he explained a bit about our day. He handed us over to Kieran, a recent college graduate, who would be our guide throughout our visit. Healey’s has recently added a giant cider vat that visitors will be able to look into and actually see the cider after it has been made. Kieran told us of the history, operation, and production aspects that go into running this farm.  They strive to be self-sustaining. They have a wind turbine that provides more than enough energy in the winter to run their operations and they even use spring water from the farm in the preparation of some of their spirits. After showing us the 16th Century cider mill, the farm horse and the bottling room Kieran led us into the only spirit cellar in the country that the general public can actually go inside. The cellar is kept cold and dark (no flash photography please) to help slow down the evaporation process.  This cellar also serves as the tasting room.  Yes, Please! Visitors young and old get to sample the various offerings from Healey’s.  There are several varieties of apple juice as well as their very own energy drink for those under 18 and country wines, ciders, and spirits for those over 18 who care to try them.  Kieran was an excellent host and encouraged us to “see, smell and taste” each beverage. By the end of our tour we were surprised to come outside and see blue sky and sunlight! But wait! Just as we were regretting our choice of an indoor activity for the afternoon, the weather changed yet again with the clouds rolling back in.

After a trip to the gift shop we were headed back to Mount Haven Hotel for a wellness treatment by local therapist Katy Emblin. After braving the steps of Tintagel Castle yesterday our feet were in need of some serious pampering, so we opted for the Reflexology treatment. All the profits from the spa treatments are sent to India to help support an orphanage for 34 street children.  Pampering for a worthy cause what could be better.

Having skipped lunch altogether we were quite ready for our meal at Mount Haven’s lovely restaurant.  The whole experience really promotes relaxation. Instead of immediately seating you at your table, Jake invited us to have a seat on one of the sofas in the lounge and peruse the menu.  Olives and peanuts as well as our drinks were brought to us as we decided what we would have this evening. Heather ordered a courgette and Haoullumi  salad and I ordered a very unique chili chicken salad. After ordering we were invited to enjoy the view of St. Michael’s Mount, skim a magazine or just sit and soak in the ambiance.  When our food was ready to be brought to the table our host, Louie    ( who wears many hats at Mount Haven,  and does so very well ) led us downstairs to the dining room.  Several of the staff served us various parts of our meal – all very friendly. Our salad starters were so unique, and so delicious, we did not want them to end! The entrees arrived in beautiful form – a Hake with crispy squid and a bacon cream sauce for me, and a peppercorn creme sauce ribeye with green onion, sage potato croquettes and kale for Heather. All outstanding! To top it off, the caramel pie with vanilla bean ice cream. We also enjoyed some local Cornish cider and a rose’.

As we ate, we watched the sky change from dark clouds, to blue, to wispy clouds, and all over again! And drizzle off and on. It reminds Heather of Brittany in France, where the weather can change every 5 minutes! By the time dinner was over,it was clear enough that we had a great view of the Mount castle illuminated…truly magical. Cannot wait to explore there in the morning….at low tide we will walk out on the causeway, which is covered during higher tides.

Enjoying the wet-dry-wet-dry journey-