Already home to some of the city’s finest Afternoon Teas, the Cardiff Hotel restaurant scene is evolving with two relaunches from The Hilton and Novotel, and new menu additions at Park Plaza and St David’s. Here’s an insight on what to look out for in the closer quarter of 2016…
PARK PLAZA CARDIFF – PINK AFTERNOON TEA
Some of you may know I’m already quite a fan of Park Plaza Cardiff’s Hendricks Gin & Tea and for October they will also be offering a Pink Afternoon Tea for £24.95pp, which includes a glass of Mercier champagne. Even if you’ve no reason to celebrate, the 10% of every purchase going to Breast Cancer Care Cymru is a good enough excuse to indulge!
If you’ve not been before, the Laguna Kitchen & Bar oozes glamour and taste without any pretence, the staff are very friendly and attentive (and that for me forms a big part of any Afternoon Tea experience). The lounge area in particular is a really relaxing space to unwind, feeling miles away from the hustle and bustle of Greyfriars Road.
Like the Gin Afternoon Tea, the four finger sandwiches are thick and fluffy with the egg and chive mayo reaffirming itself as my favourite filling – so simple yet so scrumptious!
The middle tier includes a freshly baked sultana scone, Devonshire clotted cream and strawberry jam, and lightly spiced welsh cakes.
The top tier is where the ‘pink’ theme continues with a sweetly presented strawberry cup cake in a heart shaped basket, melt in your mouth macaroon, champagne jelly and mille feuille (that I wish I could order by the dozen) – delicious!
Once again Park Plaza Cardiff excelled themselves with an impeccably presented Afternoon Tea. If you’re interested in booking or seeing what else is on the menu, click here to visit their website (opens in a new tab).
NOVOTEL CARDIFF – THE GOODS SHED
Located on Schooner Way south of the city centre is Novotel, a four star family-friendly hotel which has recently revamped its bar and restaurant. ‘The Good’s Shed’ is an eclectic mix of industrial fittings and contemporary style with exposed red brick, retro book cases, quirky lamp shades and beer barrels.
The restaurants style echoes the buildings industrial heritage as a railway shed, and the menu also reflects on this era with fish cakes baskets lined with newspaper clippings, meat filled baked potatoes and locally sourced beef burgers.
Fellow Cardiff blogger Hungry City Hippy was won over by their Espresso Martinis (pictured above), and I was particularly impressed by their cocktail offerings too.
The Goods Shed is located to the right of the Hotel entrance, ideal for walk-ins if you’re after a casual after-work drink at the bar or lunch time nibble.
HILTON HOTEL CARDIFF – GREY
(Above: Before as ‘The Razzi’ and now as ‘Grey’)
Formerly ‘The Razzi’, ‘Grey’ is Hilton Hotel Cardiff’s newest restaurant with an irresistible all day menu. The floor to ceiling windows are now draped with silver beading, and the contemporary furniture is complimented by pops of purple.
The chic setting and ice sculptures is a dazzling first impression, and this was maintained throughout my evening thanks to the very attentive and speedy service (given the place was at full capacity).
Miss Nicklin and I were blown away by Phil Jay Magic, who performed some spell binding card tricks for us. It reminded me of the harpist that played here during my Afternoon Tea back in the new year – a lovely unexpected extra that makes for a memorable experience.
The beautifully presented dainty canapés were downright tasty, and showed off the diverse, locally sourced menu options at Grey, crafted by Head Chef Mark Freeman (who’s CV includes the aforementioned Laguna Kitchen and Bar).
Starters and nibbles include; leek and potato soup, prawn cocktail, crispy beetroot gnocchi and artisan breads using Carmarthenshire salted butter.
There’s also a ‘small and large plates‘ section to cater to all appetites featuring; smoked haddock risotto, Ty Gwyn cider steamed mussels and Usk Valley lamb. A grill section offers locally sourced steaks, cooked and served on a Himalayan pink salt stone, and ‘between breads‘ is perfect for lunch with toasted sandwiches, beef burgers and lobster.
The popular Afternoon Tea from The Razzi is also refreshed with Grey’s Cream Tea (£15) or Afternoon Tea (£18pp), served with award winning Novus Tea – Champagne or Prosecco available as an additional extra.
The menu that seemed a real talking point was ‘Grey’s Bottomless Brunch’ that offers two courses for £25 and unlimited Prosecco for 90 minutes. Dishes include; crushed avocado & chilli on rye toast, Eggs Benedict and a traditional weekend roast. There’s also three ‘guilty pleasures’ currently available as a dessert – warm apple crumble, sticky toffee pudding and knickerbocker glory.
ST DAVID’S HOTEL & SPA – GENTLEMEN’S AFTERNOON TEA
Cardiff’s five-star hotel resort boasts the classy ‘Tempus at Tides‘ restaurant with views over Cardiff Bay. In recent months they’ve expanded their Afternoon Tea menu with the inclusion of a Children’s and Gentlemen’s Afternoon Tea. The Gentlemen’s Tea is more meaty with less sweets and a Welsh Ale, but it can be enjoyed by ladies too! For my full review and more info on this restaurant, click here.
Disclaimer: My experiences were complimentary, however all opinions are my own.