Thursday, 21 January 2016

Revolucion de Cuba - Brunch Menu

I'll be honest with you, I like to brunch. Would I necessarily think of going to Revolucion de Cuba to do so? No. However last weekend I was invited to try their new brunch menu, so not knowing what to expect Mrs Clonc and I went along to do just that.
Now my days of going out out are in the past but even I have been to Revolucion de Cuba, so it was quite strange seeing it in broad day light. The place is vast with plenty of seating, the odd mix of ceiling fans and glitter balls hinting at it's alter ego.  We decide to take a seat in a booth at the far end to survey the place.

The new brunch menu launched this month and will be served Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 2.oopm. The menu clearly works hard to try and cater for all tastes from the traditional full grilled breakfast to the more adventurous huevos rancheros. The drinks especially look very temping. I love Bloody Mary cocktails and would have liked to have tried the gin based variation had I not been driving (school boy error). So instead I settled for a Virgin Mary (lame I know) and Mrs Clonc an orange juice. As for the food I went for the avocado brunch and Mrs Clonc the huevos rancheros.

The food arrived neatly presented on some beautiful plates and certainly looked very appetising. My avocado brunch consisted of smashed avocado on sourdough bread, topped with a poached egg, a side of patatas and a cucumber and tomato salad. Now when it comes to poached eggs I'm very fussy, the slightest hint of an over cooked egg and my inner Marcus Wareing is ready to send the dish back to the kitchen! However I can report the egg was perfectly poached and when cut oozed into the almost creamy avocado below and all soaked up by some lovely bread. The patatas were crispy, well seasoned and morish. I didn't even mind the side salad. Lovely. Top tip here is a good dollop of the excellent tangy and spicy rum sauce to dip the patatas into. 

The huevos rancheros equally received approval from Mrs Clonc, the combination of soft flour tortilla topped with spiced black beans, mushrooms and tomatoes then finished with a fried egg and a dash of rum sauce left me with a little food envy! She graciously let me try some which I can report was delicious. The perfect level of spiciness from the beans, mushrooms and tomatoes, well cooked and seasoned too. Ditto for the patatas. Clean plates all round.

We finished off the meal with a Cafe Cubano (sweetened espresso) and a hot chocolate. Again well presented on individual wood trays with a cube of dense chocolate cake. A nice touch and good attention to detail. The hot drinks were made well and the chocolate cake was really rather good.

Overall we really enjoyed having brunch at Revolucion de Cuba. The food as mentioned was good. Although at first I was weary of the vastness of the place it was great to have a 'corner' to ourselves. The atmosphere was surprisingly chilled and even more surprisingly family friendly. With high chairs available and lots of space for kids to run around (whilst their parents wearily chase them). The service was friendly and attentive. Although we didn't pay for our meals, as we were invited, I think the menu is priced well for what is delivered. 
In conclusion although I was slightly unsure of what to expect from brunch at Revolucion de Cuba I was pleasantly surprised and next time I'm in town on the weekend and fancy a spot of brunch with the family, I would definitely consider going to Revolucion de Cuba without hesitation.

Revolution de Cuba
Address: The Friary, Cardiff, CF10 3FA
Tel: 02920 008 444

Monday, 11 January 2016

Arbennig Emporium - Sneak Peek

Last month I previewed the new venture from the team behind Arbennig Restaurant (click to see full preview) and today I got a sneak peek of what they've done ahead of their grand opening this Friday.

As you can see from the photos there has been quite a change! The lovely exposed brick wall which was previously hidden by the counter takes main stage and looks great. In fact the whole place looks bigger and more spacious. 

The colour scheme from the restaurant next door has been carried through but the eclectic mix of tables, miss matched chairs, including some reclaimed and up-cycled school chairs, gives an all together more relaxed feel. 

The emporium will serve breakfast every day until 12 pm, including all the breakfast favourites. The eggs used will be locally sourced and free range. 

Also on offer will be their signature hand stretched focaccia sandwiches with a cavalcade of fillings, the bread warmed just before the sandwich is made to give that 'fresh out of the oven' effect. 

This is aside from their crowd pleasing hand made ham hock scotch egg, freshly made breads, cakes and biscuits!  John Cook the Head Chef and proprietor of both the restaurant and the emporium tells me the gluten free hazelnut and chocolate torte is rather special and not to be missed!

But that's not all, the emporium will also stock pies from the formidable Pieminister, award winning carrot cake from Mrs O's Kitchen and the delicious Bara Brith from Baked by Mel. Along side this Arbennig Emporium hopes to become the go to place for all your foodie needs by stocking the finest olive oils, cheeses, eggs and a host of specialist ingredients.

Talking to John and his wife Ceri who together run both the restaurant and the emporium you can tell that quality means a great deal to them and it is by sourcing quality ingredients to use in their food and offering great products in a relaxed environment that seems to be the essence of what they are trying to achieve.

Arbennig Emporium opens on Friday the 15th of January 2015 and will be open Tuesday to Sunday 9am - 6pm except Sundays where it will close at 4pm. I truly cannot wait to visit this Friday. The place looks great, the food sounds lovely and if the photos are anyting to go by then we are all in for a treat!

Arbennig Emporium
Address: 4 Romily Cresent, Pontcanna, CF11 9NR 
Twitter: @ArbennigE