The first thing that demands your attention when arriving at David and Holly Jones’s idyllic Dartmouth-based cooking school is the wood-fired ovens standing tall on the terrace. After all, who isn’t mesmerised by the prospect of cooking with wood at frighteningly hot temperatures? Manna from Devon specialises in wood-fired cooking and, as you’d expect, has a stash of state-of-the-art alfresco culinary kit – notably its best-of-the-bunch Bushman Santorini ovens.
It’s not just about pizza, either; Manna’s students learn to master other styles of wood-oven cooking, such as bread baking and roasting – all delivered in an easygoing, down-to-earth atmosphere. There are also classes that focus on cooking fish, as seems appropriate for a cookery school with a vertiginous panorama of the Dart estuary. The school has two B&B rooms on site for anyone who wants to make a break of it and, perhaps uniquely for a British cookery school, Manna from Devon also runs classes in Spain, which sounds like as good an excuse to visit the Sierra Nevada as any, and courses in France, too.