On expanding my area of visit from the usual mid Devon area, I have decided to venture into Cornwall for the day and pay a visit to Paul Ainsworth at Number.6 in Padstow. The restaurant is an airy converted house consisting of a few small separate dining areas. This means service can be tricky as the staff has to be managed and distributed correctly to get the service right and they did this extremely well. My meal starts with a glass of Tokaji which is fragrant and full bodied along with some wheat free toast served with an airy cod roe mousse topped with crushed pork crackling. It is a great combination of light creaminess and crunch. Starter of torch blown mackerel (pictured) which is lightly pickled, torched brown but not crispy on a bed of creamy celeriac spaghetti. It is supported by crispy cucumber and parma ham which brings a savoury note to the dish, and garnished by some herby shoots and edible flowers. It is well balanced and there is a cleanness of taste in the mackerel which harmonise the dish well. Main course is Cornish red mullet which is baked, served with a saffron and chicken liver risotto, garnished with crispy chicken skin. The combination of the moist mullet, creamy richness of risotto and liver and yet more crunchiness of chicken skin works well together. There is also a drizzle of the sweet sherry reduction which lifts the whole dish up to another level. The only complaint is the chicken liver maybe a little too strong in flavour which can remedied by having smaller pieces instead but this is really nitpicking here. The desert is rhubarb, with set natural yoghurt  hazelnut and sorrel. There is a good mix of tartness, creaminess and texture with the nut and it is not too sweet either. Overall, fantastic service by the waiting staff who is busy but yet happy to linger and chat and not once do I have to wait to be served given the tricky layout of the restaurant. this is a very competent and high standard restaurant at a lovely fishing port location.


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