We are passing through Riverside and heading to Canton on our walking tour of Cardiff.
Previously, I left you crossing the River Taff on the bridge to the start of Cowbridge Road East. It's a long road, with many independent restaurants
offering cuisine from all around the world. At the first
junction, with Cathedral Road and Lower Cathedral Road, on your left:
49 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AD (2030 3002)
The Westgate Hotel is a large traditional Brains pub, on the
corner with Lower Cathedral Road, with a long horseshoe-shaped bar. It serves a
wide range of standard pub meals and real ales. The original Westgate Hotel on
this site was established in the eighteenth century, but was demolished in the
1930s. Children welcome with dining adults (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. July
Across the Lower Cathedral Road junction, and
after Electric Bikes:
53a Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AE (2039 8055)
Posh Nosh is a catering company, with a popular
front-of-house sandwich bar. A wide range of sandwich fillings are available,
though don’t expect radical or adventurous options (Food Hygiene Rating 4:
good. July 2011).
55 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AE
A small Spar store opened here earlier this year. Formerly
Further along Cowbridge Road East is a busy junction, with
Neville Street doubling back sharply to the left and Wellington Road straight
ahead. Keep to the right fork and walk past the entrance of St David’s Hospital
to stay on Cowbridge Road East. It should be noted that the numbers on the left
and right of this road soon go wildly out of synch (e.g., 149 on the left
opposite 72 on the right). On your right:
52 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2064 4555)
Indian and Bangladeshi cuisine: take-away and delivery
service, with online ordering. Kebabs, tandoori oven, biryani, vindaloo and
numerous other curry dishes, good vegetarian special selection, and curried
cockles. Halal (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. Oct 201).
On Way Pizza
54 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2023 1661)
Take-away: burger, kebab, pizza. Maybe One Way Pizza missing an 'e'. This was formerly Canton
House Kebab (Canton House Kebabs: Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement
necessary. Sept 2011).
Hot Wax Records (58 Cowbridge Road East) sells vinyl
records. Plenty to interest the collector and a boxful of free vinyl on the pavement outside to get the curious hooked on its superior sound quality.
60 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2022 7120)
Fishmongers selling interesting range of fish and seafood,
including crabs, lobster, octopus, squid, scallops and shellfish, along with
seaweed, vegetables and game (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement
necessary. March 2012).
64 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU
Off-licence and general store. Sells spices.
The Eurasian Tandoori
66 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2039 8148)
Contemporary Indian and Indonesian cuisine served in
restaurant established in 1968, making it one of Cardiff’s oldest family-run
restaurants. The distinctive purple frontage leads into a surprisingly large
establishment, with areas for group and couples dining. The menu features
Tandoori, Bangladeshi, Indonesian, Punjabi, Balti and interesting house
specials. Unlicensed, but you can bring your own wine or beer for a small
corkage. Take-away menu closely mirrors the restaurant menu (Food Hygiene
Rating 3: major improvement necessary. March 2012).
145 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2022 8911)
In the impressive old Royal Exchange building (1887), U
Diner is a large all-you-can-eat Chinese oriental buffet and hotpot restaurant.
Licensed and operates maximum two hour stay at table (to stop people doing
lunch and dinner for around £11). Also an extensive take-away menu.
147 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AH (2022 7700)
This Italian Restaurant and Lounge Bar opened in April 2012.
La Galleria is an independent serving classic Italian food, including pizza and
pasta, fish dishes, and chicken, veal and steak meals. The Head Chef is Pietro
Godino. Chef’s specials include Risotto Gamberoni e Cozze (arborio rice, king
prawns and mussels in a white wine, plum and Tuscan tomato sauce). Open for
lunch and dinner every day except Sunday (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally
satisfactory. June 2012).
149 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AH (2039 5959)
Indian restaurant and take-away, with Balti and tandoori
dishes a speciality (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Oct 2012).
151 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AH (2034 1844)
The New Champagne is a Chinese take-away (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. April
153/155 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9AH (2022 3697)
La Lupa Ristorante is a large independent serving authentic
Italian food, specialising in Roman cuisine (e.g., Pollo con Peperoni and
Saltimbocca alla Romana). The owner is Roberto Raffaelli. Bread and pasta are
made on the premises, and the best value on the menu is the three-course
midweek (Tues-Thurs) special for £13.50. Open for lunch and dinner Tuesday to Saturday (Food Hygiene
Rating 5: very good. Sept 2011).
The Italian Way
157 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DW (2036 6980)
Locally-owned Italian restaurant offering all the Italian classics; typical menu items include pan-fried sea bass, Chicken con marsala and Linguini marinara (Food Hygiene Rating 3:
generally satisfactory. Oct 2010).
Right side and backtracked to opposite Balti Wallah:
72 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2034 4320)
Opened almost a year ago (on 15 Dec 2011), Pho Bac is unique
in Cardiff for serving authentic Vietnamese cuisine. I met a friend for lunch
there this week. We opted for the £6.50-a-head lunch menu, for which you can
currently choose practically any starter and main course on the menu, and also
get a soft drink or tea for the price. I opted for Sweet and sour grated salad
with mango and beef jerky, followed by a fried catfish dish with ginger and
mango sauce. My companion had seafood spring rolls followed by a Pho dish
(photos below). The restaurant is named
after Vietnam’s most popular dish (pho), Vietnamese flat rice-flour noodle soups
(Pho Bac means northern pho, variants on the dish from up near Hanoi, as
opposed to Pho Sai Gon). Special dishes
on the menu are not included on the lunchtime deal; these include goat meat hot
pot (£90) and Vietnamese delicacies such as Duck tongue in crispy batter and Vietnamese
pork feet delicacy. The menu is being simplified this month, to specialize in a
smaller number of Vietnamese street foods (including all the dishes that are
most popular with customers). They will still do the Vietnamese specialities,
but they will have to request them off-menu. There is a take-away menu and karaoke
at the weekends.
74 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DU (2037 2697)
The Kings Castle Hotel is a traditional locals’ pub on the
corner of Cowbridge Road East and Kings Road. The pub dates from around 1890,
and according to cardiffpubs.co.uk, was once called Ebenezer Riley’s Kings
Castle. It is owned by Enterprise Inns. It’s a drinkers pub and I could see no
evidence of food being served.
A short distance along Kings Road:
11 Kings Road CF11 9BZ (2019 0265)
Opened in Sept 2012 by Richard
Edwards and Montserrat Prat, with Chef Pablo Melillo, La Cuina (Catalan for
‘the kitchen’) brings authentic Catalonian food to Cardiff for the first time;
indeed, it claims to be the first Catalan deli/restaurant in Wales. The
downstairs deli sells artisan bread and a range of Catalan products including
olive oil, chorizo and other dried meats, sheep and goats’ cheeses, wines, wine-based
vinegars, honey and cakes, as well as Catalan earthenware for the oven and
dining table. I left with some Xorico. There are also vacuum-packed meals from
the kitchen to take-away. Tapas are served in the upstairs restaurant at
lunchtimes, with a full menu of Catalan dishes served Thursday to Sunday
evenings. A new menu is being printed this week. Expect dishes like Catalan chicken
casserole with prunes, chocolate and wine, and Slow-cooked rabbit in escabetx (white wine
vinegar). Mains from around £18. From 2002 to 2012, the acclaimed South American
meets modern European restaurant Patagonia traded in this location.
The food and drink establishments at the other end of Kings
Road are on another part of this tour.
76 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DW (2038 4210)
Pasta, pizza and other Italian dishes are served in this traditional
Italian café, noted for its coffee. Sandwiches deals and other take-away options (Food
Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Sept 2011).
Mario’s Kebab and Pizza
78 Cowbridge Road East CF11 9DW
Take away. Seems to be closed for business at the moment (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory.
At the nearby junction with Wyndham Crescent, take a short
2 Wyndham Crescent CF11 9EH
Opened earlier this year, this take-away offering authentic
Malaysian food, appears to have been short-lived. It closed last month for
“restructuring” and is currently still closed (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major
improvement necessary. Sept 2012).
4 Wyndham Crescent CF11 9EH (2123 0464)
Indian takeaway, which used to be Masala Night.
14 Wyndham Crescent CF11 9EH (2034 0197)
Chinese take-away (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Nov
Go back to the junction. I'll meet you on the corner next time!
Previously, on the walking tour: