The ‘Loving Welsh Food Tour’- a delicious way to experience Cardiff
So you’ve chosen to visit Cardiff? Llongyfarchiadau! Congratulations!- on a decision well made. And yes, as residents we may be a little biased- but whether you’re planning ahead, or already sat in Wales’ capital, you’re about to discover and explore a fascinating city. A vibrant and cultural capital; it is rapidly becoming one of the UK’s most popular tourist destinations. And with a range of landmarks to enjoy, heritage and history to delve into, restaurants and bars to experience, shopping and various sporting events, festivals and concerts taking place throughout the year- it is easy to see why.
How could you possibly experience it all? Fear not…
If you’re looking for something different to experience in Cardiff, a top tip would be to take a city tour. And what better, and might we say delicious way, than by checking out one of the Loving Welsh Food tours.
Perfect for visitors and locals, The Cosmopolitan Cardiff Food Tour ensures you’ll discover some of the best places to eat and drink, meet the producers, and that’s on top of learning about the wonderful Welsh culture. You’ll explore Cardiff’s thriving food scene and get to taste a selection of international specialities, while finding out about different cuisines, including Welsh, in cafes, delis and restaurants located within the city centre. All the while learning about Cardiff’s varied and lively history, and admiring the city’s wonderful architecture and key points of interest.
Our guide for today is owner of Loving Welsh Food- Sian Roberts. Sian is a passionate advocate of Welsh food, culture and language; and it as turns out, as we head off from Cardiff Castle on our food tour, a ‘fountain of knowledge’ when it comes to Cardiff’s history and its culinary scene. Venues do tend to alter depending on the day of the week, and dishes vary according to seasonality, so while we visited these locations on our tour they will change:
Located opposite Cardiff Castle in the heart of the City centre, after 10 years Nata & Co has now grown to be Cardiff’s very own little Portugal where both locals and tourists visit to curb their cravings of delicious homemade food. Founded by Portuguese bakers after noticing a lack of authentic Portuguese pastries, Nata & Co’s aim is to share their roots and spread the love of their café culture to everyone who visits. Awaiting us, a welcome cup of coffee and a Pastel de Nata- a Portuguese egg custard tart pastry.
Continuing on the tour, as a resident it is easy to become complacent when you live in an area. Yet whether you are a visitor or a local, it’s evident that even after a brief walk around the Welsh capital, there is an abundance of beauty in this city. From the spring blossoms in Bute Park, to the iconic Civic Centre and the historic building and arcades, it really is a case of blink- or in Cardiff’s case…look up, or you’ll miss it.
And it’s the Royal Arcade, in which we find ourselves for our next stop. Dating back to 1858, this is the city’s oldest arcade- originally starting life as a retired slum house before being brought back to life by The Cardiff Arcade Company as the first full scale shopping centre in the city.
And while Wally’s hasn’t been ‘in situ’ quite as long, David would have you believe that he has been there since 1864! In fact, he has worked in the delicatessen since it opened in 1981. And as he produces a charcuterie board, we learn a little of the fascinating background to this Cardiff favourite.
Following a further selection board of the finest internationally produced cheese, including the Black Bomber from the Snowdonia Cheese Company, which quite frankly should come with its own health warning for being completely irresistible; we’re off to our third stop.
Located on the High Street, Prego is an Italian wine and cocktail bar, and the perfect stop for a relax and chilled glass of wine from their own family-run vineyard near the Amalfi Coast…not forgetting the bruschetta either.
Our next stop is one of our more regular hang-outs, and certainly ‘a must’ if you’re in the city centre.
A beautiful Victorian building located in the Castle Quarter, Cardiff market is home to two floors of stalls, ranging from hardware to haberdashery and clothing to clocks. Yet it is also the perfect inclusion for a food tour; and while on this occasion we have just the two stop offs at Mediterranean Food and Thai Asian, if you have an extended visit we would highly recommend taking time out to explore all of the food offerings, from Tukka Tuk, Pierogi, Tokyo Nights and Ffwrnes.
Put simply, any food tour in Cardiff would not be complete without the inclusion of a welshcake. Also known as bakestones, due to the traditional cast-iron griddle cooking method- these flatbreads of deliciousness have been popular in Wales since the late 19th Century.
Our penultimate stop is therefore the wonderful Fabulous Welshcakes. Located opposite Cardiff Castle, not only are these cakes with a view, but with both traditional choices and flavoured options including lemon, cinnamon, cranberry and white chocolate they really do live up to their name.
And with a warm welshcake, fresh from the griddle to go, it’s time to savour each bite as we head towards our final tour destination; although not before taking in a few more of the city’s landmarks.
The Principality Stadium, Westgate Street
Our final stop is one of our perennial favourites at Find My Dine, due to the choice of quality Spanish produce and truly memorable cooking…oh and not forgetting the sherry! On this occasion, as we sit and reflect on our tour in Bar 44, we are treated to rich dark chocolate truffles with either the option of a well-earned coffee, or if you’re more inclined (like us) a glass of Nectar pedro ximénez.
If you’re keen to check out the culinary offerings of a new city on arrival, then the Loving Welsh Food Tasting Tour is the perfect way to learn more about the Cardiff food scene, while discovering some of the city’s key landmarks.
The Cosmopolitan Food Tour runs every Friday until the 25th November 2022, from 10.30am to 3.30pm. It costs £60pp plus a booking fee. To find out more information and to book on this, or a private food tour, head over to the Loving Welsh Food website.
Website | https://lovingwelshfood.uk/