With a faint whiff of fresh paint still hanging in the air, The Assay House's newness is tangible. As the latest in an express succession of inhabitants of number twelve Chapel Street, we watched with puzzled minds and hopeful hearts as the name board was screwed to the fascia. With its gentrified locale, period glass frontage and open-plan interior, the premises is yearning for an owner to put its merits to proper use and provide Penzance with an asset that lasts. While this new incarnation hasn't quite settled in, we enjoyed our first acquaintance with the place. Not operating as a full restaurant yet, instead, The Assay House has coffee, teas, cakes and small menu of antipasti, as well as beers, spirits and wine. They also sell wines by the carafe – a thoughtful touch. The highlight, though, is the coffee; it's the best we've come across in the area. To our taste, the Flat White we tried was on the money. The beans are supplied by Portioli, an Italian brand we hadn't heard of, but have duly noted. PP will be back for more.
The Assay House