Our expert guide to some of the best restaurants in Devon. Including Mitch Tonks’ award winning restaurant Rockfish in Brixham fish market, and Shoals café on the lido. Also check out the best foodie spots and restaurants in South Devon here.
The Gastrobus, Bantham Beach, Kingsbridge
The Gastrobus occupies an enviable spot on one of South Devon’s premier surf beaches. Try the Bantham burger (a 6oz patty with smoked bacon and a choice of Devon Blue or mature cheddar), local crab rolls and loaded hot dogs.
Open every day from Easter through to October, expect good coffee, baked goods, fresh local produce and decent ice cream for the kids. gastrobus.co.uk
The Glorious Oyster, Westward Ho!
The Glorious Oyster started as a mobile oyster bar trading from a Pashley tricycle in Bristol, but when youth worker Lyndsay was made redundant in the summer of 2014, she moved to North Devon and reopened her business in a converted horsebox next to the sea wall at Westward Ho!
The menu changes with the seasons but firm menu staples are the fish finger sandwich made with breaded MSC pollock, the fish burger, the local scrumpy-steamed Appledore mussels and griddled Bideford Bay lobster with spiced slaw, herb salad, samphire and sea purslane.
It has been so successful that Lyndsay has now opened a second beach shack at nearby Instow beach. Whichever you decide to visit, Lyndsay encourages customers to clean up after they visit the beach and all tips go to marine conservation charities. thegloriousoyster.co.uk
Crab Shack, Teignmouth
Located on Back Beach, looking directly over the estuary at Teignmouth, Amanda Simmonds says the main reason people travel from all over to the Crab Shack is because it has its own fishing boats and they catch most of the fish and seafood themselves (Amanda’s husband has been a crab fisherman for more than 30 years).
The menu is made up mainly from anything that can be produced from crab or lobsters, with the most popular dish being fruits de mer. Expect to have to crack, pull and tear apart your dinner here. crabshackonthebeach.co.uk
Part of celebrity chef and restaurateur Mitch Tonks’ growing collection of informal seafood restaurants, the Brixham branch of the award-winning Rockfish is perched above the world-famous fish market that supplies many of the UK’s top restaurants.
Grab a window table or seat on the terrace and watch the fleet of day boats bringing in the day’s catch as you tuck into fish and seafood that is often still in the sea an hour before you eat it.
Try the roasted half-shell local scallops with garlic and breadcrumbs or the fritto misto of prawns, sprats, monkfish ‘scampi’, cod and calamari with chilli and tartare sauce and unlimited chips. therockfish.co.uk
Shoals Café on The Lido, Brixham
Sean and Sarah Perkes have transformed a near-derelict building with limited water and electricity supplies into a thriving dining destination since opening Shoals in the summer of 2015. Above the open-air Shoalstone sea water pool, Shoals is open seven days a week during the summer, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner.
For Sean, a fifth-generation fish wholesaler and exporter who spent his youth at the iconic lido, it was only natural that this beach-side restaurant would showcase the very best local seafood and the menu changes daily depending on what arrives at Brixham fish market in the morning.
Get plates of local day-boat scallops and monkfish in a flamed whisky, bacon and cream sauce served with chips or crusty bread; and Elberry Cove mussels in a white wine, garlic and cream sauce. The fresh Brixham crab sandwiches and homemade mackerel pâté and melba toast are the stuff of dreams. shoalsbrixham.co.uk
Photographs | Red Air Drones | Shoals café on the lido