The term 'hidden gem' is an oft-overused phrase when reviewing a food establishment. I've certainly used it to describe more than one eatery that I've been fond of.

But Slice of Cornwall fits that description down to a tee.

Tucked away off the B3297 that connects Helston and Redruth and situated three miles outside the former, you could be forgiven for not even knowing this cafe existed.

But its sequestered location just adds another layer of mystique to a place that affords a real 'Secret Garden' quality, with its location among the rolling hills and secluded woodland almost making it feel like you are actually eating your lunch in the setting of the 1911 novel.

The chance to tour the woodland area that surrounds the cafe is quite handy if you've rocked up a little bit early and want to build up a bit more of an appetite before sitting down, or for walking off the meal afterwards.

If that isn't enough, a £4 fee (free for under-14s) allows you to access the formal pond garden, which offers another area of glorious greenery to explore, which includes a variety of miniature sculptures and a beautiful - you guessed it - pond.

There is even a shed full of toys and games, so if you were hoping for a quick game of croquet after your meal, then you are very much in luck.

Falmouth Packet:

Despite arriving in wonderful sunshine, we chose to eat under the covered outdoor seating after consulting the not-so-delightful weather forecast.

That decision was vindicated a few minutes after sitting down when the heavens opened and doused one family as they ran for shelter.

We initially thought we were also being treated to a spot of thunder, but quickly realised that it was just the cafe's sliding entrance door.

Thankfully, our drinks had arrived by that point to warm us up. I opted for a latte, while both of my companions went for the Slice hot chocolate, which was topped with whipped cream and one humongous marshmallow, and tasted as good as it looked.

They also offer your usual range of teas and coffees, as well as herbal teas, frappes and a variety of soft drinks.

Falmouth Packet:

Food wise, I chose the Helford burger, which was your classic beef burger with all the trimmings - cheddar, red onion, mustard, gherkins and so on - in a Baker Tom brioche bun, with some rustic chips and slaw on the side.

As a man who has tasted many a burger, I would probably rank it somewhere in mid-table: not in danger of relegation, but not a title contender either.

My two companions, on the other hand, decided to choose from the array of sourdough flatbreads that Slice offers. They opted for The Kig, which comprised chorizo and cheddar topped with chilli jam, and Myfawny, which is a roasted ham and mozzarella offering with pineapple jam.

The flatbreads are quite a generous size for their £9.50 price, certainly for lunch anyway, with neither of my companions able to finish their meal. That allowed me to have a taste of what was left, and they were both very nice indeed.

I am not a big fan of fruit on flatbreads and pizzas so that ruled out the pineapple jam, but the chilli jam on The Kig was exquisite.

I hadn't realised that the idea of putting jam on a savoury meal existed but it really did work, and that is a fine metaphor for this lovely hidden gem.

Falmouth Packet:

Our cost (three people, including drinks): £43.45

Address: The Homestead Woodland Garden, Crelly, Trenear, Wendron. TR13 0EU

Hours: 9.30am to 4pm from Wednesday to Sunday (open until 5pm in the summer months)

Phone: 07903788315


Atmosphere: 3.5/5

Décor: 4/5

Food: 4/5

Service: 4/5

Overall: 4/5

Food Standards Agency Food Hygiene Rating: 5/5

In order to ensure objective reviews, the Mystery Diner is carried out on an independent basis without the prior knowledge of the establishment.