The Cornish pasty is authentic British cuisine at its best. Since its humble beginnings as a duo layered hand-pie, combining both meats and sweets, the Cornish pasty has developed into a brand, known throughout Britain. In fact, the Cornish people are so proud of their creation that it’s an offence to label a pasty “Cornish” if it wasn’t made in the original homeland. In recent years pasties have also experienced a surge in popularity throughout Australia, America and Mexico, partly due to the now legendary Portreath Bakery.
The Year of the Pasty
2015 will forever go down in history as a monumental year for pasty lovers due to the opening of the world’s first ever drive-though pasty shop. But, it’s not just Cornish pasties on the menu; drivers can also order a cream tea and pick up their weekly groceries without even leaving their vehicle. The innovative idea was born when owner and lifelong pasty enthusiast, Marion Symonds, needed to nip to the shops for some bread and milk, but didn’t want to leave her snoozing children alone in the car. Naturally, she decided that opening a shop was the best way to combat this extremely frustrating dilemma. Eighteen months later, the drive through at Portreath Bakery opened its… hatch.
The 3.5 acre site isn’t just a gimmick. It also boasts a 100 seat restaurant, gluten-free bakery, gift shop, and top of the range training facility for budding bakers. As the creator of the Cornish Pasty Festival, and previous contender on The Great British Bakeoff, Symonds certainly knows her stuff – she’s even made pasties for Tony Blair and Her Majesty the Queen! So, if you want to learn how to chop veg and crimp pastry with the speed and dexterity of a lifelong pasty artisan, sign up for one of her courses through Cornwall College.
A drive-through pasty store isn’t Symonds’ only major accomplishment in the pasty industry. In 2014 she travelled to Mexico to launch the most monumental feat of pasty engineering since the creation of puff pastry. Turns out, the mining region of Real Del Monte descended from migrant Cornishmen; so to celebrate their love for the glutinous delight, locals worked alongside Symonds to create the Mexican Chilli “Cornish” pasty… seems a little contradictory to the rules. To commend her honourable efforts in the field of pasty activism, Symonds was subsequently presented with the prestigious Pasty Ambassador Award at the 2015 World Pasty Championships.
How to Find Portreath Bakery
The Portreath Bakery drive through is open from 07:00 till 18:00, seven days per week. You can find it just off the A30 by following signs for the Duchy Business Centre (TR15 3RT). If you live too far away, no need to worry. To cope with the demand, Portreath Bakery now provides a nationwide delivery service, so you can order batches of pasties, scones, cakes and unique one-off specials.
Standard Steak: £3.10
Extra Large Steak: £4.00
Mexican Chicken: £3.20
Cheese and Bacon: £3.20
Standard Cheese: £3.05
Lamb and Mint: £3.30
Standard Vegetable: £2.95