Last week Jon and I were lucky enough to be invited to the Mercure Cardiff Holland House Hotel and Spa Spring menu tasting evening for their newly rebranded Urban Bar and Kitchen, along with a few fellow bloggers and local journalists, plus they even put us up for the night in a lovely room so we could get the full experience of the hotel. We had an absolutely lovely evening chatting with some fellow foodies and some of the staff from the hotel spa then a really nice relaxing night and some yummy breakfast, it was just what I needed at this point in my pregnancy.
As I wasn’t drinking wine with everyone else I also had some rather tasty Strawberry and Pineapple mocktails which you may have seen on our Instagram!
For starters they brought us a selection of mini versions of the small plates (like tapas!) so we got to try a few different ones (or all of them!).
- Dukkha Spiced Goats Cheese
- Seasonal Soup of the Day (I think it was Cauliflower)
- Slow Cooked Ham Hock, Honey and Mustard Terrine
- Scottish Oak Smoked Salmon Roulade
- Tempura Battered Monkfish
- Lamb Spring Rolls
If we are honest we loved all of the dishes, every one of them was tasty and I would happily order them all again. Jon’s fav was the Lamb Spring Rolls and mine would be a toss up between the Goats Cheese and the Salmon Roulade (which was like Sushi!)
For mains we were able to choose any dish we fancied from the new menu so I opted for the Sweet Potato and Mozzarella Risotto Cake, which was served with a light ratatouille of chargrilled veg, red chard and a pine nut salad, Jon decided on the Poached and Roasted Chicken Supreme which was stuffed with sun dried tomatoes and mozzarella and served with a chicken lolly pop and a smoked aubergine and potato croquette. We also had sides of roasted summer veg, creamed leeks and potato wedges.
Jon polished off the lot of his food and said it was all packed with flavour and really moist. Due to the pregnancy I can’t manage big meals at the moment, but had a damn good go at finishing mine (I failed, but only just!). I wasn’t sure what to expect with a risotto cake, but it was a bit like a fishcake in style but made of risotto. The flavours were great, slightly sweet from the sweet potato but thick and rich, and the ratatouille was delicious (I ate all of that!!)Lastly of course there was dessert, again, as with the starters they served us mini versions off all the dishes so we could try a few if we wanted. We opted to try 3 which we fancied from the menu.
- Baked Vanilla Cheesecake
- Spiced Warm Poached Pear
- Lemon and Thyme Panna Cotta
All of them were delicious but I think we both loved the Panna Cotta the most and would definitely order that should we visit the Urban Kitchen again.
Our room was a lovely little suit on the 10th floor which comprised of a big comfy bed, small seating area, lovely bathroom and huge wardrobe (should you stay for longer than a night!) Granted the views aren’t great from the hotels location on Newport Road, but the huge windows did let in tonnes of light which was lovely. The decor is simple and modern without any fuss. Just a tip if you do stay and happen to be looking for tea and coffee its in the wardrobe above the minibar! Took me 10 mins to find it! hehe!
Breakfast was yummy! Jon went for a traditional cooked breakfast from the serve yourself counter, which was all well cooked and nice and fresh and hot. I opted for Eggs Benedict, as amazingly I had never had it before…it was so tasty! I could have eaten it twice!! yum yum yum! Plus we had a few mini pastries, we were on holiday after all. The selection there was great if you didn’t want a cooked breakfast too, lots of fruit, cereal, breads and continental meats, plus juices and teas and coffee.
We will definitely be visiting the Mercure Cardiff Urban Bar and Kitchen again in the future and think it would be a great place to hold meetings with clients when we are in the city, and have a romantic meal and night away. Thank you so much for inviting us guys!!