Lonely Planet Writer

An interactive heritage centre devoted to the Cornish pasty has just opened in Cornwall

If you’re partial to a Cornish pasty, an interactive heritage centre devoted to what is considered to be Cornwall’s national dish has just opened in St Austell. The centre can be found in Cornucopia, which is Cornwall’s newest multi-million-pound food and drink visitor attraction. It aims to celebrate everything that makes Cornwall’s food and drink offerings special, including a look at the county’s rich heritage and influence that stretches throughout the globe.

An interactive heritage centre devoted to the Cornish pasty has just opened. Image: Cornucopia

For those unfamiliar with the Cornish pasty, which dates back to the 1860s, the name was awarded Protected Geographical Indication status by the European Commission in 2011. According to the PGI status, a Cornish pasty should be shaped like a ‘D’ and crimped on one side, and its ingredients should include beef, turnip, potato, onion, salt and pepper.

An interactive heritage centre devoted to the Cornish pasty has just opened. Image: Cornucopia

Open seven days a week, visitors to the Cornish Pasty Heritage Centre can immerse themselves in interactive exhibits that tell the fascinating story behind the popular pasty. They’ll discover its links with the tin and copper mining industry, which can be traced to far-flung parts of the world like Mexico. Visitors can enjoy a pasty-tasting tour, which offers additional insights and ends with a sample-sized trio of specially-created pasties, carefully matched to three drinks.

An interactive heritage centre devoted to the Cornish pasty has just opened. Image: Cornucopia

Budding bakers can take part in a ‘Make and Bake’ experience, which teaches the art of pasty-making. After their creations have emerged from the oven, the bakers can sample them or simply take them home. Naturally, there’s a bakery offering a wide selection of pasties straight from the oven at the venue, plus a wide selection of specialist food and drink retailers.

An interactive heritage centre devoted to the Cornish pasty has just opened. Image: Cornucopia

Cornucopia Live will play host to a calendar of events and entertainment that will include live music, comedy and specialist performances on its purpose-built stage. And finally, a traditional indoor market hall called Cornucopia Market Place will be held every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday.

Cornucopia is located at the St Austell Bay Retail and Leisure Park. Visit here for further details.