West Lodge, Bute Park & Arboretum, Castle Street, Cardiff.
029 2023 5486 / www. pettigrew-tearooms.co.uk
Many of you will be familiar with Pettigrew Tea Rooms due to David Le Masurier’s brilliantly honest blog describing his journey of making his dream of opening a tea room a reality. This created a huge level of excitement around the opening and guaranteed a crowd of people desperate to see his creation within a building that had served no real purpose to the people of Cardiff, despite its prime location.
Although I’d been in several times since the opening, I’d yet had the chance to sit outside on the sun terrace overlooking Bute Park. Also sitting outside making the most of the gorgeous weather were cyclists, dog walkers, families and more suprisingly, Gruff Rhys.
Over a long, leisurely lunch we picked the smoked salmon and cream cheese sandwich (£6.45); my dining companions both chose the Fisherman’s Ploughmans (£6.95). The sandwich came with a dressed salad, crisps and homemade coleslaw. Everything was absolutely delicious; the salmon was fresh and plentiful and the coleslaw made the perfect accompaniment. The noises of delight that came from my dining partners signified their enjoyment of the Ploughmans, with a special mention to the homemade mackerel pate which was, by all accounts, divine.
We couldn’t decide on which cake to try, so we had a small selection of them all – including carrot, coffee and walnut, lemon and chocolate. All of them were light, moist and flavoursome and were soon polished off. Through a combination of faultless factors including the food, drink, attention to detail, location and the staff, Pettigrew Tea Rooms has filled a hole in Cardiff’s culinary scene. It’s a welcome step away from the identikit coffee chains which have started to saturate the city. ANGHARAD BROWN