1. Since opening in 2015, RumpusCosy has positioned itself as the place to eat in the Plymouth’s West End. This bohemian cafe and bistro in Derry’s Cross combines excellent food with a relaxed environment, perfect for a business meeting or lunch with clients.
In early 2016, RumpusCosy will launch its brunch menu - traditional breakfast favourites and simple offerings such as locally made artisan toast with Cornish honey, served with Owen's coffee and a superb selection of teas. Try high tea and supper too, all served against a backdrop of candlelight and jazz music. Owned by the arts organisation and registered charity Effervescent, RumpusCosy is a social enterprise - all profit goes to Effervescent's work with vulnerable children and young people. Next door is sister organisation Radiant Gallery, which is supported by Plymouth University and Arts Council England, and is the only UK gallery space to be permanently curated by young people. www.rumpuscosy.co.uk
2. The Philleigh Way cookery school, on Cornwall’s verdant Roseland peninsula, is run by brothers-in-law James Martin and George Pascoe, who belongs to the fifth generation of Pascoes to hail from Court Farm at Philleigh.
Day courses range from stress-free dinner party cookery (May 11) and Argentinian barbecue (May 14) with visiting experts. From May, there are also regular Asado nights taking place in a new outside woodfired kitchen and dining courtyard. Each session offers fresh fish, meat or seafood cooking gently on the ‘Parrilla’ (wood grill) or in the wood oven. Call 01872 580893 or visit the website www.philleighway.co.uk
3. Holly and David Jones run the Manna From Devon Cookery School, teaching cooking skills to small groups in the relaxed environment of their Victorian home overlooking the River Dart near Kingswear, South Devon.
They return for a third year to host a series of themed cooking events at the beautiful Deer Park Country House Hotel near Honiton. All classes take place in the Garden Kitchen in the hotel grounds, and are perfect for groups of friends to enjoy a relaxing day in stunning surroundings while learning new skills. Four courses are available: Grill Like A Gaucho, Deer Park Tandoori, Fish And Seafood and Stateside Barbecue. From May to August; £95pp, maximum 8 people per class. Call 01803 752943 or visit mannafromdevon.com
4. Looking for a fun way to spend half a day? Try the half-day cookery courses at Ashburton Cookery School.
During a morning or afternoon session you will enjoy three hours of in-depth, hands-on learning with experienced chef tutors focussing on one specific skill such as canapes, fish filleting, knife skills, sushi and pasta making. There is no lunch provided, but you will leave with the ingredients or dishes that you have prepared during the course. Call 01364 652784 or visit www.ashburtoncookeryschool.co.uk
5. Learn the secrets of English winemaking at Yearlstone Vineyard near Tiverton. More than 7.5 acres of mature vines sit on steep southerly slope overlooking the lower Exe valley at Bickleigh.
The soil, a silty clay loam over fragmented Devon red sandstone, is perfect for vines and some of the most sought after for vineyards around the world. Roger and Juliet White bought the vineyard in 1994, and have since expanded the business to include a complete onsite winery and a café. The Vine to Wine Group Tour is designed for groups of up to 20 (daytime) or 24 (evening), and includes a half-hour talk, demonstration and tasting in the winery with Juliet, who is among England's top winemakers. £10pp, minimum charge £120. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org