May highlights: Mickey’s Beach, Boston Tea Party, Ben’s Farm Shop and more!


May has been a bit wet and wild. It is safe to say that it has been the wettest on record, but one thing that has been keeping our spirits high has been some of the events and places we’ve visited this month. May 17th saw many businesses reopening their indoor areas, and others opening for the first time since January.


Newly opened

Mickey’s Beach

After an agonising wait, Michael Caines has now opened Mickey’s Beach and the Dining Devon team were honoured to be invited along to help him celebrate it’s opening. The weather was wild and dramatic, but it only went to emphasise the glorious views over Lyme Bay and down to Dawlish & Torquay. We tasted samples of their menu and experienced the beautiful surroundings of this must anticipated restaurant.

Casual dining with that Michael Caines signature class, quality local ingredients cooked over charcoal gives it a real beach-hut vibe. With a wood-fired pizza oven cooking delicious pizzas, diners can either takeaway or eat in.


Welcome back!

We visited some venues that are welcoming back diners after lockdown.

The Pig at Combe, Gittisham, Honiton

Open for inside dining in the Restaurant and The Folley.

No need to book for The Folley or you can eat on the terrace on dry days too.  Enjoy delicious wood fired flatbreads with freshly picked vegetables from the kitchen garden. Excellent service and atmosphere.  Somewhere you can lose yourself for several hours. Just perfect.

Boston Tea Party, Honiton

Sue travelled over to Honiton to visit the Boston Tea Party in all it’s reopened glory. We visited the Boston Tea Party just prior to rules changing to allow indoor eating, and enjoyed a wonderful lunch in the lovely courtyard. Plenty of space with some covered tables for the rainy days.

Breakfast and Brunch, drinks, cakes served all day. Open 8-5pm Mon – Sat and 9am – 4pm Sunday #gifted

Coljan, Ashburton

Back open for indoor dining, Coljana in Ashburton welcomed their first visitors for months since adapting to lockdown cooking of delicious takeaways.

Sue was invited to attend the official launch of Coljan Natural Wine & their new relationship with Natural Growth Wine so they now offer a selection of natural wines to be enjoyed in or out, a wine club, shop (also online) and tastings. Partially #gifted.

The ribbon was cut by Councillor Jenny Giles, Mayor of Ashburton and we enjoyed an evening of wine tasting – Enoz Wines from Italy and Sharpham Wine along with a charcuterie & cheese sharing board.

With newly refurbished interior and brightly painted exterior the expanded team are excited to be back in full action, offering evening dining, Thursday to Sunday & Charcuterie platters & drinks Thursday to Saturday 9pm – 10.30pm.

Visit www.coljan.co.uk for full information on opening times of café, wine bar & restaurant and follow on Instagram

Harry’s Exeter

Two thirds of the gang visited Harry’s Restaurant in Longbrook Street, Exeter to test drive their new menu as part of a soft launch event (#gifted). The menu has always changed to match seasonality and availability of ingredients, but this was an exciting change that really showcased some of the things that Harry’s do really well.

If you’ve not been inside for a while, you’ll find a new stylish interior but still with that Harry’s charm and exceptional level of service. With new additions to the menu and a strong emphasis on sustainability, there are still some classic things that Harry’s do exceptionally. For us their grill menu is incredibly strong, and Chris reported that they sell most probably the only (and best) fish finger sandwich in Exeter.

Their PB & Chocolate Shortbread was an absolute winner with all of us. This was a #gifted event.


Buying food

Ben’s Farm Shop

Lauren discovered the wonders of Ben’s Farm Shops a couple of years ago, but has been enjoying their incredible organic meats and local goodies even more over the last year. Based at Staverton, outside Totnes, the farm shop has an array of local veg from Riverford Farm, a brilliant butcher counter selling organic meats, local drinks, a deli and plenty more. The deli fridge alone is worth visiting for!

They have just opened their ‘Harry’s Smokehouse’ on site too for yummy food cooked ready to eat.

Lauren gets interviewed!

Lauren was recently interview for Torbay-based Quay Magazine’s ‘Meet the Maker’ feature, talking about Dining Devon, how hospitality businesses have done amazing things during lockdown, some suggestions of where to eat and more! You can be read it online on page 22 here.

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2021 (C) Disclosure – all images, unless otherwise stated are copyright of Dining Devon. Some of our visits or products are #gifted and are noted as such, but do not affect our opinions and are not influenced or seen by venues before we publish or share our experiences.

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