For almost a decade the Cornish Bakehouse has stood on the corner of Cardiff’s Church Street, just a few doors down from Cardiff Market. It’s been there so long, I can’t actually remember what was there before.
The Cornish Bakehouse is one of 23 shops of its kind in the UK, owned by a family-run business based in St Ives, Cornwall. The first shop opened on the front of St Ives Harbour in 1990 and to this day, pasties are still handmade here in the traditional way before being transported to shops for sale.
The bakery’s long-standing success is largely owing to these award-winning pasties, as I’m about to find out. The Cornish Bakehouse boasts a range of authentic pasties and isn’t afraid to experiment with what it puts in them, either. From broccoli, cheese and sweetcorn and lamb and mint, to chorizo, chicken and bacon and Thai chicken, there’s something for all tastes.
The Cornish Bakehouse also offers Cornish pasties with classic fillings like cheese and onion, steak, vegetable, ham and cheese – and of course, the beloved sausage roll. These are all priced from £2.30 – £2.45 (excluding sausage rolls, which are much cheaper) and come in one size.
I eventually decide upon the traditional steak pasty, which comes in small, medium, large and giant sizes. I go for the giant one (£3.50 – purely for the purpose of this review, honest!) and as you can see, it really is a rather large pasty.
My pasty is a lovely golden brown colour, perfectly formed, with a neat crimp. Inside it’s filled with warm chunks of brisket steak, chopped swede and onions, seasoned with plenty of salt and pepper. It tastes like the perfect Cornish pasty and leaves me feeling full for hours after lunch.
Aside from pastry bakes the Cornish Bakehouse also serves hot jacket potatoes, like the one below which is stuffed with chilli con carne and cheddar cheese (£3.50). The chilli has a good, meaty bite to it and it tastes fresh and homemade. They’re not at all stingy with the cheese, either.
I’m also rather fond of the Cornish Bakehouse’s paninis. They also come in a range of fillings, all under £3, with small and large options available. I like the bacon and brie (large, £2.60). The only downside is that by the time I get it back to the office, most of the cheese has melted onto the paper bag.
The Cornish Bakehouse also serves a range of freshly made baguettes, hot breakfast rolls (which, I think, are served all day), pizza slices and hot and cold drinks.
Aside from savouries, the Cornish Bakehouse sells homemade cakes and sweet pastries. My favourite is the strawberry and rhubarb slice (£1), pictured below, a delicate, sweet sponge topped with moist fruit.
Now that the weather is on the turn and the days start to get colder, the Cornish Bakehouse is the ideal place to go for some warm, comfort food. I plan on working my way through all of the different pasty varieties…
11 Church Street
(029) 2066 5041