Lunchtime review: Taste – High Street, Cardiff city centre

Pale green, cream and brown. The colour palette at Taste makes for a refreshing break whilst popping out of the office for lunch. Sitting in a black wicker chair next to the window I admire the bright, striped walls and the rustic brown pouffes, which are made to look like old crates.

Tucked away from the busier parts of Cardiff city centre, Taste can be found on High Street, opposite Cardiff Castle. Although its innovative atmosphere and originality may make it seem like an independent, it is in fact the second of its kind to open within the UK. The first Taste opened in Romford, Essex, with the Cardiff branch marking the start of an exciting new franchise.

The café/deli offers breakfast and a selection of light lunches including sandwiches, salads, jacket potatoes and sandwiches. The sandwiches are divided into ‘classic’ (traditional) and ‘gourmet’ (elaborate) fillings. Classics include favourites like tuna mayonnaise, coronation chicken and prawn marie-rose, whilst the gourmet sandwich menu offers creative, affectionately-named choices like the Cwmbran Banger, Cardiff’s Best Tuna Melt and Welsh Ploughmans.

Two different prices are listed against each sandwich option; the lower is for standard bread whereas the higher price is charged for a ciabatta, bagel, wrap, baguette or bloomer bread. With each gourmet sandwich option comes a recommendation as to which bread it tastes best on, as in the case of the Cwmbran Banger, ‘best on Bloomer!’

The fillings are laid out in a glass cabinet near the till, in the style of a traditional ice cream parlour. I feel like a child as I toy between the different dishes, trying to decide what to order.

I can’t resist the sound of the Bookmaker’s Melt: sliced roast beef, creamy wholegrain mustard, mature cheddar and freshly sliced tomato (£2.95). I order it toasted on granary bread, and by the time I get back to the office the cheese has melted nicely onto the beef, making for a tasty treat for lunch.

My manager goes for the Cwmbran Banger (£3.60), consisting of quality pork and leek sausage, homemade red onion chutney and fresh mayonnaise, with lettuce. It looks just as good as it sounds (and probably tastes even better)!

Another colleague goes for a Smoked Salmon and Soft Cheese wrap (£3.70) from the classic range. Served with tomatoes, cucumber and lettuce, this could quite possibly be the biggest wrap I’ve ever seen.

In terms of value for money the sandwiches made on standard bread are quite reasonably priced, but if you go for a fancy type of bread you can expect to pay around 80p more. Suddenly the bread recommendations against each sandwich option seem less like useful advice and more like part of a money making ploy. Take my advice instead, and stick to the standard bread – it’s actually quite tasty.
That said, we are all impressed by the freshness and visual appeal of our food, and I think it’s safe to say that Taste will remain a firm lunchtime favourite in our office for the foreseeable future. Perhaps next time we’ll make good use of their lunch delivery service instead, ideal for those unable to pry themselves away from their desks.
15 High Street,
CF10 1AX
(029) 20 341 820
Opening hours
Unfortunately, Taste has closed down since this post was published – such a shame!

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