A greatest showman of an evening at Exmouth’s Queen’s Drive Space

Posted by on August 2, 2018 in Katie's Blog | Comments Off on A greatest showman of an evening at Exmouth’s Queen’s Drive Space

If you are visiting the region this summer and are struggling for things to do with the kids – look no further than Exmouth – the new Queen’s Drive Space is chock full of fantastic food and drink outlets, a spacious and sandy playground, lots of things to see and do, and of course it’s right by the beach. Winner! Most Thursday afternoons during the holidays there are circus workshops being run for children and on Fridays there are cinema screenings, sometimes of child-friendly films in the afternoon along with more adult offerings in the evening. There is a fantastic selection of movies coming up this summer. If I could I would go to all of them and revel in the nostalgia of my youth. How’s this for a line up of al fresco films? (and yes, they all warrant exclamation marks in my opinion):

Grease! (3 August)
Jaws! (17th August)
E.T.! (24th August)
Back to the Future! (31st August)

There are also Saturday music sessions and live music some evenings at the bar. We were treated to the husky tones of Sadie Horler from Exeter singing some fantastic songs that took me way back, for example very laid back acoustic covers of Oasis and Tracy Chapman numbers.

Taste of the West, an organisation that champions food producers and awards quality marks to West Country produce, has organised the food stalls at the Queen’s Drive Space. To find out where other food events are happening throughout the year visit their website. There is plenty of seating at Queen’s Drive Space, largely made out of pallet wood, with attractive cocktail-style tables, wooden sofas and also a couple of hammocks. The kids were happy there was giant jenga and plenty of sand to play with.

We were impressed by the variety of food on offer. Felix indulged his passion for fish and chips at the Kenniford “beach hut”. Kenniford are perhaps better known for their hog roast stands (such as the one at Mole Valley in Cullompton where you can get a fantastic pork bap or a great value pork roast dinner) and their farm shop and cafe at Clyst St Mary just off the M5 near Exeter, so fish and chips is a new venture for them but Felix said his was fantastic and he should know as he tries them just about any opportunity he gets!

Mia had a brilliant burger with cheesy chips from Bush Farm Catering. She went for traditional beef but they also had bison and venison burgers on the menu. The portion sizes were generous and I can assure you the cheesy chips were very good as I had to sample them (just for quality control you understand).

I decided to plump for a dumpling from The Earl of Gravy Dumpling House. I saw them first at the Gate to Plate food festival in Honiton earlier in July, but didn’t really feel like a dumpling and gravy at 11am. This time I debated long and hard between the four flavours on offer and eventually settled on Stilton and Walnut with redcurrant jelly. The Earl of Gravy is a new concept in street food (at least new to me) – the “stew” is encapsulated by the dumpling which floats in a sea of gravy with peas and pickles. A sort of fusion between traditional English food and Asian filled dumplings. It was hearty, delicious and warming, just what I needed on a slightly chilly Friday evening when the weather was breaking after a heatwave and we were watching open air cinema! A friend sampled the Devon beef with horseradish which was tender and tasty. They were out of the pizza one on the evening we went but they did have Mexican tamales in addition to sage and bacon. I will definitely be trying the other flavours when we return.

Talking of weather breaking – we missed out on watching the promised blood moon due to heavy cloud cover but we did see another spectacle in the sky – the Greatest Showman on the big screen outdoors! I hadn’t seen it before and I loved it, I was hooked from the opening bars. The sound and picture quality of the open air screen at Exmouth is great and there was plenty of room for everyone. Note you can take a picnic in to the open air cinema but you can’t take alcohol. No matter as there is a cute little Oddfellows Bar on site, an outpost of the Exeter and Exmouth gastropubs (note to self, sample both soon).

And if you need something to follow your gorgeous savoury food check out Panda’s pan roll icecream. You can choose from a myriad of different flavours (including some well known chocolate bars) and have them mixed and frozen right in front of your very eyes on pans chilled to minus 30 degrees C. It’s a method of ice cream making that’s been imported from Thailand and is mesmerising to watch.

We had a very enjoyable evening at Queen’s Drive Space and will definitely be back. Make sure you go this summer as it may morph into something else next year. For full listings of what’s on see their website.