Eating the Chef’s Pie at The Old Custom House in Padstow

The Old Custom House in Padstow is quite a grand looking building located right on the corner of South Quay alongside the Harbour.

Their food is what I would call upmarket pub food, some may say Gastro Pub, basically its a bit fancier than a pub

It is a much bigger place than you first think with a Hotel attached on one side and then sprawling out to the Cally Oyster Bar and Grill on the other side

Last year we tried to eat here but with the restrictions it was residents only so we were happy to be able to book a table this time we visited.

As it happens we probably didn’t need to book but were glad we did as we got a prime table in the window overlooking the harbour

The menu has all the classics on there, burger, steak, fish and chips, and a pie. All sounding slightly posher than a standard pub offering.

The Fish & Chips was described as being ‘coated in a St Austell Ale & seaweed batter with crushed minted peas, tartare sauce and lemon’ sounds tasty but for £16 I would take my chances at Chip Ahoy around the corner instead.

There was other great sounding stuff but we were here on the hunt for a mythical pie, hopefully the Chef’s Pie was going to be it

We once ate a really super meat pie somewhere near the harbour over 15-20 years ago but we could never remember exactly where.

I do know that there is a very low chance that the pie will still be the same, but it gave us a reason to come and we wanted to believe that the Chef’s Pie was going to be the pie of our distant dreams


The Chef’s Pie turned out to be one of Chicken and Bacon with Cornish Blue Cheese. I was very happy to find that it was a proper pie with pastry all around and not just one in a pot topped with pie crust.

It was really good pastry, not too hard and not too flaky, it did its job of holding the contents well. There was plenty of filling inside the pie and a quite generous amount of chicken.

The filling was really very tasty, I am never sure about blue cheese on its own but it does seem to have some magical quality when it is paired with other stuff. In this pie it gave a strong sweet tang to the flavours and with the salty bacon made a really good gravy sauce to go with the chicken.

The menu lists the dish very simply as ‘Chef’s Pie with seasonal veg and gravy’. It also comes with a potato side of your choice, the offerings being fries, chips, mash or new potatoes.

I opted for Chips having been assured that they were proper big thick pub style ones. The seasonal veg turned out to be French beans and peas, which must be in season somewhere I guess. There are no peas left in my allotment and I was on the last of the beans when I left. We are down south though so maybe still growing in Cornwall 🙂

Just for balance here is the same pie only with new potatoes, quite large ones as well it transpired. I preferred having chips but my dining companion was all over the boiled spuds instead. Butter and Gravy needed 🙂

Either way the Pie itself was excellent and we both got extra pots of gravy when we asked. I really don’t know why they just don’t give people bigger pots to start with at places. There is never really enough and it’s not like it’s made of gold dust. For the record it was a really nice gravy

In the end it was a really good meal, was it the mythical pie that we were seeking? It was certainly good enough to have been but we decided it was not as we didn’t think we had ever been here before in the end.

Of course it is entirely possible that it didn’t look like this inside 20 years ago and we had. I guess this is how myths and legends occur, there was no instagram back then and I didn’t take pictures of my food 🙂

For the record it is a Pie worth coming in from and at least this time to took the time to document it

The Old Custom House is located at South Quay, Padstow, Cornwall, PL28 8BL and you can follow them on their Instagram Profile and Facebook page

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