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The Artillery Tower, Plymouth

The sea wall on Plymouth Sound with views to Drake’s Island.

The Artillery Tower Restaurant sits in a 15th century tower overlooking the sea.

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The Artillery Tower has been run by myself, chef Peter Constable and my wife Debbie, for more than fifteen years. It offers some of the best restaurant dining in Plymouth. The Michelin-rated restaurant focuses on sourcing the best local produce, combined with proper cooking, and a relaxed informal service. And the wood-burning stove and exposed stone walls create a warm, friendly atmosphere.

The restaurant is set quietly a few minutes drive from the city centre. And it’s only 100 metres away from the Royal William Yard. There is plenty of free parking is available nearby. We look forward to welcoming you to our Plymouth restaurant.

OPEN FOR DINNER: Wednesday – Saturday, from 7.15pm.

CLOSED: Sunday – Tuesday, and lunchtimes.

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The philosophy of our ever-changing menu respects the traditions of classical cuisine. We value proper preparation, freshly-made stocks, sauces and pastries. Note we make our own bread, pasta, chocolates and fudge (yum!).

The food you enjoy at the Artillery Tower focuses on fresh, local and seasonal ingredients from artisan suppliers. Good food needs great ingredients and we make every effort to source the best produce we can using our many years of experience.

The Artillery Tower is proud to provide the only fine dining experience close to the Royal William Yard.  Indeed, with our unique location and stunning sea views we are a fabulous choice.

Located close to the Royal William entrance our Plymouth restaurant menus offer sophistication and good food in equal measure. With a great choice of restaurants in and around the Royal William Yard you should really come down and seek us out, it’s well worth it.

OUR LOCAL SUPPLIERS

Gribbles Butchers, Ivybridge – Mark sources simply the best beef, lamb and pork from farms in the area. Dedicated to Devon farmers. www.gribblesbutchers.co.uk

Howells Butchers,Tavistock – Otter Valley Organic Poultry, Newton Abbot.

Real Veal Company – Welfare friendly rose veal, Looe. www.bocaddonfarmveal.com

Gara Barton Venison, Bodmin. www.garabarton.co.uk

Ocean Harvest, Andy Trust, Looe – Finest day boat fish.

Crebers of Tavistock – Rare malts, cognacs etc. www.crebers.co.uk

Trewithen Farm Dairy, Lostwithiel – Milk and cream.

Britannia Shellfish, Nick and Anita Beesands – Hand-dived scallops, crab, lobster and fish from their own boats. www.britanniashellfish.co.uk

Devonia spring water. www.devoniaspringwater.co.uk

Country Cheeses,Gary and Elise, Tavistock – Local and regional farmhouse cheeses and butter. www.countrycheese.co.uk

Christopher Piper wines. Ottery St Mary. www.christopherpiperwines.co.uk

PICTURE GALLERY

HOW TO FIND OUR RESTAURANT NEAR THE ROYAL WILLIAM YARD

Plymouth and its restaurants are easily reached. Our restaurant is near the ferries and the Docks, so just follow the signs.

The Artillery Tower

THE HISTORY OF THE ARTILLERY TOWER IN PLYMOUTH

Firestone Bay Artillery Tower dates from the early 1500s, and is one of the oldest complete military buildings on Plymouth’s sea front. This tower protected the deep water passage at the North of Plymouth sound, between Drake’s Island and the main water front.

Piers Edgecumbe acquired most of the land of the then ‘City of Stonehouse’ by his marriage to the heiress to the estate – Joan Durnford. He was granted license to improve and fortify the land by Henry VIII in 1539. The tower was one of the fortifications, along with a city wall, to protect Stonehouse from attack by seaborne raiders.

The lowest gun-ports in the tower (now blocked) were designed to enable the defenders’ cannon to inflict maximum damage on enemy ships.

These improvements and fortifications were a wise precaution. For in 1544 France turned her energies from Spain towards England. Then, in 1588 the tower would have been the only permanent defence against the Spanish Armada.

In the 1660’s, Charles II built the Royal Citadel on the Hoe with gun positions pointing at Plymouth and the sea, so the Tower’s role began to diminish. In Worth’s 1884 document, ‘The History of Plymouth’ the Artillery Tower was briefly named ‘The Winter Villa’ when it was a police house.

It has also been a coastguard station, Ministry of Defence store and a public convenience! Conversion to a restaurant was in 1983. The Artillery Tower is one of the most preserved fortifications from Tudor times.

SOME SIMPLE RECIPES

OUR DAUPHINOISE POTATOES

500g potatoes, sliced to about the thickness of a 50p piece
300 ml double cream
2 cloves peeled bruised garlic
Pinch nutmeg
6g salt

Put the cream, garlic, salt and pepper over heat bring to a gentle simmer and infuse for 15 mins. Remove garlic from the cream. Add the potatoes and bring slowly to a simmer cook for 10 mins  frequently stirring gently. Transfer to a suitable sized dish and bake until golden brown.

MUSHROOM SOUP

170g butter
2cloves of garlic chopped
200g onions chopped
500g Shitaki mushrooms finely sliced
500g of closed cap mushrooms  finely sliced
1litre of chicken stock
50g dried ceps soaked in enough water to cover them. I use the Italian brand from Sainsburys.
Salt and pepper to taste 200ml double cream
White truffle oil to taste  also available from Sainsburys.

Melt butter in a suitable pan large enough hold all the ingredients. Add the onions and garlic to the pan and sweat them until soft but not coloured. Add the fresh mushrooms lower the heat and place a lid on and sweat the mushrooms until they have completely wilted and has created it own stock.

Add the dried mushrooms and water. Add half the stock and bring to a gentle simmer and cook for 20 mins. Add cream. Remove from heat and blend until smooth. At this point you may need add more stock to get the desired consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle truffle oil just before serving.

If you are going spend the £20 it costs to make this soup. I would advise making a homemade chicken stock, the results are better. If you are going to use a stock cube watch the salt.

PARSLEY AND POTATO SOUP

250g of flat leaf parsley
500g of chopped leeks
150g of diced potatoes
1 litre of chicken stock
100ml whipping cream
100g unsalted butter
Salt and pepper to taste.

In a large saucepan melt half the butter. Pick over the parsley leaves, chop the stalks, reserve half of the leaves. Sweat the leeks and parsley in the butter until soft, add the chicken stock and simmer until potatoes are cooked.

Whilst the soup is simmering chop remaining parsley, blanch in boiling water for 30 seconds, plunge under cold water and drain. Blend soup with blanched parsley and pass through a sieve. Blend in butter and cream. Season to taste.

CANNELLINI AND SMOKED BACON SOUP

500g of cannellini beans
300g chopped onions
100g chopped celery
100g of chopped leeks
3 cloves of garlic
1 bay leaf
12 black peppercorns
5 rashers of smoked streaky bacon
2.5 litre of chicken stock

Soak beans overnight. Drain and put with all the above ingredients in a pan. Bring to the boil and simmer until beans are ender Remove bacon from the pan and blend. If soup is too thick add water or milk to get desired  consistency. Pass through fine sieve. Blend in 50g of butter (optional). Check seasoning.

NB Do not add salt during the initial cooking of the beans (beans will not soften if you do).

PARTY BOOKINGS AT THE ARTILLERY TOWER IN PLYMOUTH

GROUPS OF UP TO 14 PERSONS

Choose from a limited menu on the day. This gives you a choice of four dishes at each course. The menu changes so you will have to make your choices 10 days prior to you meal. Or, create a no-choice menu, by taking any dish from the menu.

GROUPS OF 15 + PERSONS (MONDAY – THURSDAY ONLY)

Choose from one our party menus. Contact us for details.

Or create a no-choice menu of your own, by taking any one of the dishes on our menus. The reason we ask you to have a no-choice menu is that it make service on the day so much more efficient, and therefore relaxed. We will of course always offer alternatives for one or two in a party who cannot eat any particular item.

Contact us for more info by email. Or phone 01752 257610

UPSTAIRS is our main dining room, the ‘Upper Deck’ with views across Plymouth Sound and Mount Edgcumbe. It is for as few as 20 up to 32 people (above 26 its very tight) If less than 20 people, we will need to add a room hire charge. This for the exclusive use of the room.

THE GUN ROOM is our downstairs dining room for 10 -16 people. Very popular for small business dinners/lunches or family gatherings. If less than 10 persons we will have to add a room hire charge.  This for the exclusive use of the room.
CONDITIONS OF BOOKING

We need to finalize which menu you are having, well in advance. We must know numbers 48 hours in advance, or else numbers as of that day will be charged.

An advance deposit of £10 per person is required in order to secure the booking.

Peter and Debbie Constable,
The Artillery Tower,
Firestone Bay,
Plymouth PL1 3QR
t: 01752 257610

Please DO NOT try and make bookings by email, as we do not take online or email bookings. We need to actually speak with you to make a reservation. Sorry, but our experience with email and online bookings is that the majority do not turn up!

OPEN FOR DINNER: Wednesday - Saturday, from 7.15pm. (last orders: 9.30pm)

CLOSED: Sunday - Tuesday, and lunchtimes.

Tell us your dining queries, or whatever. Please phone 01752 257610.

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