The Old Albion is a dog-friendly old English-style inn serving up excellent food on Cornwall’s north coast, west of Newquay
Set down a quiet lane, a stone’s throw from the centre of Crantock village, The Old Albion Inn’s dog-friendly status is immediately obvious from the numerous water bowls present around the tables on the front patio. This carries through to the interior where there are water bowls strategically placed around the main dining area.
The true test of an eatery’s appeal is whether you return after the first visit. Over the course of six days, we ate at The Old Albion four times – twice at outside tables, twice inside, and we guess that says it all.
The Old Albion is a family oriented pub, with a separate children’s menu; it’s definitely no drinking den, although we’re sure there must be more than a few locals who regularly enjoy a pint at the bar.
The staff are friendly, including dog friendly. In fact, we wouldn’t be surprised if applicants for jobs at The Old Albion weren’t asked “Do you love dogs?” at interview, such was the caring and accommodating nature of the staff. Service is also excellent, with orders being taken efficiently and food delivered in a very reasonable time, talking of which…
The well thought-out menu has something for everyone, with a range of seafood, meat and vegetarian dishes, and a separate children’s menu. We didn’t have time to eat our way through the entire menu, but we had a go:
- Baked camembert with brochettes and homemade onion marmalade (£7.50), from the Sharing Board.
- Nachos El Grande – Tortillas loaded with cheese, sour cream, salsa, guacamole, jalapenos, spring onions (£8.50).
- Vinegar beer battered catch of the day with pea puree, tartare and chips (£11.95).
- Spinach and ricotta pancakes baked and topped with cheese, crisp dressed salad (£10.00).
- Albion Burger – with cheese, bacon and gherkins (£10.50).
- Veggie Burger – homemade spicy Falafel burger with a mint and sour cream sauce (£10.50).
- Marinated lamb skewers, char grilled with a Moroccan flavoured couscous salad, with a yoghurt and mint dressing (£15)
- 10oz rump steak with chunky chips and peppercorn sauce (£17.50) cooked medium to a tee, from the specials menu.
All food is freshly prepared, reasonably priced, in our opinion, and touched by the hand of a chef who clearly knowns what he or she is doing. If we had a single complaint in the food department, it’s one that would apply to virtually every establishment we’ve visited: stacked burgers.
Tasty as they were, the burgers were stacked so high it was impossible for either of us to get our mouths around them. We’re all up for starting the ‘Flatter patties’ campaign, in an effort to get food establishments to understand that their customers like to walk away with some shade of decency after eating a burger.
Our stay in Crantock was brief. On an extended visit, like the two-week holiday we hope to have next year, chances are we would have ticked off all The Old Albion’s menu had to offer. Great food, friendly atmosphere and staff, and dog friendly: what more could a couple of old dog lovers ask for?