Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Hub, St Ives

Looking out over the harbour in St Ives is the uber cool restaurant and bar 'Hub'. Stripped back with the usual urban decor, Hub emanates a chilled out atmosphere, enhanced by the ground floor windows that completely open up, giving a full landscape view of the sea.

With the promise of good New York style big American food, and a poster advertising Tiny Rebel Brewery beers outside, we were sold, and fought our way inside.

Hit with the threat of an hour wait once we walked in, we grabbed a table and hung onto it for dear life. Being a Bank Holiday, St Ives was looking crazy busy, and we had already struggled to make reservations in other restaurants. Figuring a couple of cocktails would ease the delay anyway, we studied the immense menu.

The Hub specialises in gourmet burgers, hot dogs, and just generally a bucket load of smoky meat. Being the huge glutton that I am, I wanted everything on the menu. Luckily for me, The Hub does a fantastic slider tray. A mini version of the pulled pork bun, cheeseburger and hot dog, you get a little bit of everything including added fries, pickles and a whiff of a salad. 

The wait for food wasn’t as long as we expected (or we were numbed by the excellent mojitos on offer) and out came this cracking lot.

Vegetarians avert your eyes now.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the epic slider tray. Let's take a closer look shall we?

I am not ashamed to say I needed a little help finishing these bad boys off, the tray was so huge! The 'Boston Bun' (the pulled pork roll) was by far my favourite. Packed full of juicy pulled pork, and plenty of sauce to dribble down your chin. I know amongst all of the outstanding meat on show that this might sound odd, but the buns are incredible, and really make the burgers and rolls shine. The Hub uses a local artisan baker, and they are fiercely proud of their fresh local produce. Quite rightly too, when it tastes this good!

The round up of the other mains...

 The 12 hour slow smoked Cornish beef brisket topped with meltingly gooey Swiss cheese.

The 'Double Double', a fantastic tower of pulled pork and sauerkraut hiding under a smoked pork hotdog, and balanced precariously on a bed of hand-cut fries. 

We also ordered a bowl of pulled pork nachos for the table, as we all wanted a bite, but no-one was ready for the commitment. We needn't have worried, they were huge. Chunky tortillas topped with pulled pork and grilled cheese, with healthy helpings of guacamole, sour cream and salsa.

It's fair to say, we were completely stuffed. All of our meals were of such a high standard, especially considering how busy the restaurant was. The prices were excellent value for the size and quality of the meals, and also the seafront location.

I'm looking forward to a repeat visit, especially to work my way through more of the cocktail menu!

Sunday, 14 September 2014

Splashing Around

After a good sleep, we woke up feeling refreshed and ready to get out in the sun! Sinking the obligatory two morning cups of tea that I need to function, we threw on some clothes and wandered down to the beach before breakfast.

We stayed in Hayle, which is only about a ten minute drive from St Ives, but in my opinion, the beaches here blow St Ives out of the water. Slowly shelving blue seas and a huge expanse of golden sands, and when the clouds disappear and the wind stops, you could easily feel like you were hundreds of miles away.

Losing track of time, we collected shells and paddled for a while, until our bellies rumbled for breakfast. We trundled back to the van for some food, and then jumped on the little train into St Ives for a bit more aimless wandering.

If you can jump on the train into St Ives, even if it's only for two or three stops, please do. You'll be rewarded with the prettiest view, as the train meanders along the coastline for a few miles. You can jump on and off to a few of the smaller beaches dotted around the area too, and it's much cheaper than the in-town parking.

I haven't been to St Ives for so many years, that everything seemed to different from memory. Hence lots of trawling up and down little alleyways, getting lost numerous times and getting sidetracked by pretty doorways and cute houses!

An hour or so later, the clouds started dissolving into baby blue and we headed down on to the beach to chill out for a while.

And 'chill out' we did. Utterly proud of myself, I did what I'd been threatening to do all weekend. Get brave and get in the sea! 

I felt pretty smug legging it back out of the sea in a bikini when 90% of the (sensible) population had chickened out in wetsuits! Challenge completed, we bundled ourselves up in fluffy towels and headed back on the train to warm up before our night out. But more on that later, as there is way too much food to come to fit on one post...