2017 foodie highlights – lunch/afternoon tea

This is the second blog post in a series looking back at my favourite places to eat in Cardiff during 2017. If you missed it, my breakfast and brunch highlights are here.

Next up, it’s lunch.

Milgi Market

I finally sampled the wonderful Milgi market this year. It’s a small counter selling vegetarian salad bowls in Cardiff Indoor Market and is run by the same people at Milgi on City Road. Whenever I need to pop into town on my lunch break, I always make a detour via here.

Side note – if you haven’t been into Cardiff market for a while, take a look. It’s become quite the foodie haven; this blog post from blogger Gourmet Gorro details the market’s renaissance.

New York Deli

New York Deli would be on my ‘best places to eat in Cardiff’ list every year since I first ate there in about 2001. Their bagels and hoagies are immense; stuffed to the brim, just like you’d find in a real NY Deli. The quality hasn’t ever wavered. Quite frankly, it’s a Cardiff institution and if you haven’t eaten there you must make it your New Years resolution. Maybe not if you’re on a diet though (sorry).

The Grazing Shed

Two branches in town and a street food van popping up at loads of events means it’s impossible to ignore the Grazing Shed’s burgers. They do a fantastic veggie burger with various toppings (including goats cheese fondue, avocado mash or sour cream jalapeño) and a fully vegan option with cashew cream. The beef and chicken versions are epic too. Luckily my eldest loves it here and always requests it when we’re in town.

Waterloo Tea

Waterloo Tea added a new branch in Lakeside this year, in addition to it’s locations in Penylan, Penarth and Wyndham Arcade in town. While I haven’t visited the new branch yet, I’ve eaten at each of the others at least once this year. Their salads, soups and sandwiches are light and healthy, always ensuring you feel virtuous enough for a huge slab of cake afterwards. Great vegan, veggie and gluten free options too.

Afternoon tea at Pettigrew tea

I must admit, after sampling and writing about numerous afternoon teas since I started blogging eight years ago, I’d slightly gone-off the experience and hadn’t had an afternoon tea for ages, until I was given an afternoon tea for two at Pettigrew as a birthday present this year.

I’d forgotten how pretty it is in Pettigrew and we spent a lovely afternoon nibbling finger sandwiches, spreading cream & jam on scones (yes, it’s always cream THEN jam for me) and gorging on cake, while sipping earl grey from vintage china. Very refined.

Next in my series on my favourite places to eat in Cardiff this year……dinner and drinks.

To read the previous post on my brunch favourites from 2017, click here.

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Afternoon tea at Pettigrew Tearooms, Cardiff

It’s been a while since I’ve done an afternoon tea post, probably because I’ve tried most places in Cardiff now. But judging by the searches that lead people to visit my blog (‘afternoon tea Cardiff’ is consistently the most-searched term) afternoon tea is still as popular as ever. 

My lovely Auntie bought me a voucher for afternoon tea for two at Pettigrew Tea Rooms for my birthday, so we took advantage of it earlier this month, when we had a rare free Saturday. (No kids parties to attend – whoopee!)

Afternoon tea at Pettigrew Tearoom, Cardiff

Pettigrew Tearooms in Bute Park opened in 2012 and has been popular ever since. Set inside the West Lodge in the Castle Walls, at the entrance to Bute Park, it’s a unique and beautiful setting.

The interior is cute and quirky, with authentic tiling on the floor, copious amounts of bunting and dainty mismatched vintage china.

We pre-booked for afternoon tea and the place was rammed, including a hen do. Afternoon tea definitely seems to have become a pre-bridal staple activity.

Banana and passion fruit cake at Pettigrew tearoom, Cardiff
Scones and a pot of earl grey at Pettigrew tearoom

The afternoon tea is £15.45 per person, which includes finger sandwiches (you choose your fillings on the day and there are plenty of vegetarian options), scones (again you can choose plain or fruit) and a slice of cake of your choice. I went for the banana and passion fruit cake, which was recommended by our waitress and it was yummy! Decadent yet light. I could eat another slice of that right now…..

The afternoon tea is also accompanied by a pot of tea of your choice. I really wanted the lavender Earl Grey but they don’t do it any more *sad face* so I went for the regular Earl Grey, which was delicious. 

Both six-year-old J and F who’s almost two came along for tea and both enjoyed the experience too, the staff were really welcoming. 

Toddler F enjoying her first ever afternoon tea!

My only tiny gripe is that the manager was rather rude when I said I only had my gift voucher displayed on my phone and hadn’t actually printed it out (hello, it’s 2017). So word of warning, take your voucher with you if you have one! 

If afternoon tea is your thing, read my post on the best places for afternoon tea in Cardiff. 

www.pettigrew-tearooms.com

I was given my afternoon tea for two as a birthday gift. We paid in full for all additional extras and the staff at Pettigrew were not aware I’d be blogging about them. 

Review – afternoon tea at Cathedral 73

My friend Hayley and I love afternoon tea and it’s become a festive tradition that we always get together for afternoon tea before Christmas. We’ve tried most places in Cardiff so we’re always on the lookout for somewhere new to try.

I work on Cathedral Road and noticed a new place had opened at Number 73. Unsure if it was a B&B, bar or restaurant, a quick Google search revealed it is all of the above, also serving afternoon tea. Result!

I booked us in for a Saturday in December, a welcome respite from the madness of the Christmas preparations.

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We were really impressed with the interior when we arrived, it’s clean, minimalistic and classy, while still looking welcoming. We opted for a cosy table tucked behind the piano in the bar, near the fire, although the orangerie at the back also looked lovely.

We were given the usual choice of tea and I went for my favourite, the Earl Grey, which was good. Top ups were offered for no charge and we both went for a second while we were there.

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The food itself was a very good standard, finger sandwiches stacked full of lovely fillings (the usual; cheese and chutney, salmon and cream cheese, cucumber and ham). The scones with cream and jam were fine but were completely overshadowed by the festive top tier of miniature cakes; gingerbread biscuits, mini mince pies, mini Yule logs and a decadent chocolate liqueur truffle.

Overall I would describe this as a refined and classy afternoon tea. I’ve already been back to Cathedral 73 for lunch which was to the same standard and the delicious looking breakfast/brunch is next on my list. It’s a good job I only work a few doors down!

You can read about more places serving afternoon tea in Cardiff here.

www.cathedral73.com
029 2023 5005
73 Cathedral Road, Cardiff CF11 9HE

The afternoon tea at Cathedral 73 cost £15.80.

We paid in full for our meals and Cathedral 73 did not know I was planning to blog about them.

A festive afternoon tea at Pettigrew tea rooms

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I do enjoy afternoon tea, in fact my post on places to go for afternoon tea in Cardiff is the most popular on this blog.

When Pettigrew Tearooms in Bute Park opened about 18 months ago, I really wanted to try their afternoon tea, but until last Saturday had only made it there for a single slice of cake.

A friend and I booked a table for their festive afternoon tea (£15pp) ages ago and I had high hopes. And it didn’t disappoint.

Owner David greeted us with a teacup of non-alcoholic mulled wine and a mini mince pie each on arrival and we were then treated to endless pots of tea (we went for the Christmas blend, a black tea very similar to Chai with warming Christmas spices) finger sandwiches, cranberry scones and a slab of cake of our choice. Luckily they are equipped with plenty of cake boxes for you to take home whatever you can’t manage!

The food and drinks were faultless and the setting of the tea room makes it really special (it’s right inside Cardiff Castle walls, at the entrance to Bute Park). The interior has been cleverly designed too, with authentic tiling on the floor and lovely mismatched vintage china.

This place is a must-visit in Cardiff. But if you’re planning to enjoy the festive tea, book soon – David told me Saturday was their busiest ever day, with 40 covers pre-booked for afternoon tea. I can see why it’s so popular.

www.pettigrew-tearooms.com

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