Dolly’s Tea Room

When walking down Church Street in Falmouth in search of somewhere to eat or drink, pause in front of the Falmouth Book Shop and look up. Climb a flight of stairs and suddenly you find yourself in one of Falmouth’s hidden gems.

Dolly's is a tea room, wine bar and gin palace which opened in 2011. It occupies a chintzy Georgian room that overlooks the high street. During the day it’s a traditional tea room serving coffee, flowering exotic teas and homemade cakes. By night, the room magically morphs into a cute candlelit bar serving delicious tapas and wines by the glass, jug or bottle. Cocktails are served in teapots and poured into vintage cups, with ice cubes in sugar bowls. And if you like gin you will be spoilt for choice as Dolly’s boast a collection of over 200 different gins.

Dolly’s is both bohemian and kitsch in a cool and quirky way. It feels as if you have walked into Alice in Wonderland where tea comes in a glass and a cocktail comes in a teacup. And according to Mrs C, the cakes are worth falling off any diet wagon. Dolly’s is also dog friendly and you will get to meet Hebe the resident Labrador who wears a string of pearls, which eerily appeared to match Mrs C’s on the night we visited. And watch out for their new addition, Pearl the Springer puppy.

We shared some tasty tapas dishes. Mrs C favoured the warm crab and lemon crumble and I enjoyed a Moroccan lamb tagine with almonds and couscous dumplings - which was both authentic and tasty. We also shared a patatas bravas, hot and spicy Spanish potatoes. Prices are very reasonable from £6 a dish – and you really do get plenty for your money.

For drinks I had the house Spanish Tempranillo at £4.75 a glass and Mrs C chose a ‘Flappers Delight…’ a Vodka cocktail with lemon and vanilla, which I’m convinced was responsible for the slight wobble she suffered when descending the staircase a little later.

Dolly’s is one of those places that uniquely belong to Falmouth. It’s warm, cozy and totally original. To quote Mrs C, “I can’t imagine Falmouth without Dolly’s” – and for once I agree with her.

To finish off the night, we visited Ciuri Ciuri – which makes the best gelato outside of Italy. It’s a genuine Italian artisan gelato parlour, founded by three Italian friends: Mariangela, Simona and Andrea. The gelato is handmade every day and you can choose from 18 different flavours. Try some of the typical Sicilian products such as Nutella Frappè (Nutella and Tomarchio brioche milk shake) and the Sicilian brioche filled with gelato. Ciuri Ciuri is another one of my Falmouth favourites and I urge you to visit.

Dolly’s Tea Room – 21 Church Street Falmouth – 01326 218400

Ciuri Ciuri - 44 Church Street Falmouth TR11 3EF - 07845 507097

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