13th March 2019 by Daniella Quaglia
To celebrate launching in South Wales we sat down in the studio, poured ourselves a cup of tea and tucked into a piece of Bara Brith (see below) to chat about our favourite things about Cymru. So here goes, in no particular order…
It’s that time of year when Wales’ national flower is popping up on grass verges across the land. The pretty yellow flower signifies rebirth and new-beginnings – the daffodil screams spring. Though their botanic name is narcissus, daffodils are sometimes called jonquils and because of their long association with Lent, they’re sometimes known as the “Lent Lily.”
There are many stories to how the daffodil became an emblem for Wales but it all started with the humble leek when St David advised Welsh warriors during the battle against the Saxons to wear a leek so enemies and allies could be distinguished. St David was later made the patron saint of Wales in the 12th century and on the 1 March Wales’ celebrates St David’s Day by wearing a leek or a daffodil.
Like its cousin the Welsh Cake, this dense, spicy fruit cake has been enjoyed by many a Welshman for centuries. Tan Y Castell bakery in Pembrokshire uses a family recipe including marmalade and dried fruit soaked in tea. We like to eat our bara brith with a swipe of butter and a wedge of Welsh cheese like Black Bomber.
We make an annual trip to this pretty market town in the Brecon Beacons to enjoy the world-renowned Abergavenny Food Festival. Skye Gyngell & Jose Pizarro have been spotted by us in the past, which shows it is a class act.
If you miss this, there’s something for everyone to love; bustling indoor market, historic sights (including a castle), hillside hikes, and why not top it off with a cheeky vinyard visit!?
We have stayed at The Angel Hotel where the service is impeccable and the rooms are super cosy.
Our favourite homewares shop of all time is Baileys near Ross on Wye. Having started their lifestyle and furniture brand just over 35 years ago Mark & Sally Bailey’s journey has seen them write several books, travel the World and inspire a generation of home creators with their paired-back modern rustic vibe at Baileys Home. The stylish shopkeepers inspire and delight.
Forty years ago, Susuan and Richard Norris took a gamble and planted a few thousand vines on a limestone slope in the Vale of Glamorgan. It paid off – Glyndwr Vineyard now has awards to its name and produces some beautiful wines including a fabulous sparkling rose.
Grand Slam champions. Could they win the World Cup…?
The Welsh capital has embraced plant-based eating. In Cardiff’s bohemian Roath district, Anna Loka serves aromatic laksas, wholefood bowls, warming curries and vegan burgers. Simply V is Castle Arcade has tempting homemade vegan cakes, pies and pastries. At tea time head to Blanche Bakery for artisan vegan coffee and doughnuts.
What do you love most about Wales? Tell us on Instagram @theclarkeshouse