The Pelican in her Piety

The Pelican in her Piety

The Pelican in her Piety

Location

The Pelican is a traditional country pub, which is well off the beaten track. The pub is nestled below a wood on a rolling hillside, five minutes away from the beach, in a picturesque spot overlooking Ogmore Castle.

Guests can sit on chunky wooden benches in the garden and patio area, while sipping a cool beer and admiring stunning views over the estuary.

Atmosphere

Located about half an hour west of Cardiff, the seaside location and friendly atmosphere attract a lot of families, especially at weekends. The romantic setting also draws couples, who visit to enjoy an intimate dinner after a romantic stroll along the beach.

The Pelican is every inch the traditional country pub. The grey stone walls are complemented by pastel yellow window frames and window boxes full of vibrant flowers. Inside, the bar and restaurant are cosy and welcoming .

Food & drink

The pub is equally good for a beer and a bar snack or a full three-course meal. A wide range of specials are displayed on chalk boards, with several vegetarian options available. The food is hearty and the portions are extremely generous.

There is also a wide selection of real ales for the discerning beer drinker. Some might find the food a tad on the expensive-side, but the portion sizes make it worthwhile. Staff are friendly and accommodating.

Vegetarian barbecues

Vegetarian barbeque

Barbecue

After a very long slog, I finally finished my exams last week, which I thought called for a celebration! And what better way to celebrate than with a nice, sunny barbecue? Although I admit, the sunny part was slightly ambitious for Wales…

I love eating outside and was feeling the need to get my fix of Vitamin D after too many days spent shut away in my study with my head buried in a textbook! So armed with bean burgers, halloumi and plenty of cider, I set out to meet my friends.

Bean burgers

But unfortunately, it seems that barbecues are just another of those times when it’s not socially acceptable to be a vegetarian. As far as I can work out, there are three such occasions: 1. Christmas dinner, 2. Full English breakfasts, 3. Barbecues.

Your normally understanding friends are likely to do one of the following:

a) Look bemused and ask: “But what DO vegetarians eat at barbecues?”

b) Argue that beef burgers are far superior to bean burgers and swear that the smell of sausages will convert you.

c) Try to make a joke out of the whole thing by saying something like: “Well, for every cow you don’t eat, I’m going to eat two..!” (Yes, I really have heard that one.)

Vegetable kebabs

All in all, barbecues are a trying time for vegetarians. Even if you manage to persuade your friends that actually, vegetable kebabs are very tasty and that the smell of burgers probably won’t stop you being veggie after 10 years, you still have to deal with the barbecue itself.

There are a number of pitfalls here. If you’re the only veggie present and your host has provided you with a separate barbecue, you instantly feel like you’ve caused trouble and then you look like a loner with their own “special” food.

Worse still, you have to cook your food alongside all the meat and however hard your friends try to keep their burgers away, someone will inevitably say: “Sorry, I think I just got meat juice on your veggie sausages.” This is far from ideal.

But despite all this, I still love barbeques. As soon as the sun comes out, I just want to head to the beach, crack open a nice cool beer and enjoy the long summer evenings.

Photo: Spiros K

Vegetarian ciders

Cider apples

Cider apples

Following thegreenveggie’s review of vegetarian wines, a lot of readers got in touch about beers and ciders. I’m a big fan of cider and was more than happy to take up the challenge of seeking out the best veggie tipples…

After chatting to a lot of cider and perry producers at the Bristol Winter Cider Festival last week, I was relieved to discover that most types are suitable for veggies and most are also clearly labelled.

I’ve reviewed some ciders made by Gwynt y Ddraig – the Welsh cider and perry company. Based in Pontypridd, they use apples from Welsh orchards and were the first Welsh cider producer to earn a CAMRA gold medal.

Black Dragon (6.5%)

Black Dragon has a beautiful, light copper hue. It is aromatic, with a sharp, but fruity fragrance. The apples are grown in traditional ageing orchards and the juice is fermented in oak barrels, giving the cider a distinctive rich and mature flavour. This is a lightly sparkling, medium dry cider.

Perry Vale (4.5%)

Perry Vale blends three varieties of pear that have been allowed to ferment slowly, but this perry will certainly not suit all tastes. The smell is sickly sweet and the bubbles overwhelm the flavour. The taste lingers on the palette, but the sugary flavour is overpowering.

Orchard Gold (4.9%)

Orchard Gold proves that Wales can make cider just as well as its Somerset neighbours. This cider has a bright, gilded tone and a sweet, fruity scent. This is a traditional, oak matured farmhouse cider with a smooth flavour. The fresh and honeyed notes make this a mellow and refreshing pint.

Dabinett (6%)

Dabinett is made from a single variety of apple, which thrives in Welsh orchards. The Dabinett apple is a small, yellow-green fruit, which is native to the UK. These apples produce a pungent cider with a bright, golden colour and a bittersweet perfume. This is a well-balanced, medium dry cider, with a sting in its tail. The flavour is full-bodied, complex and shifting. A must-try for any self-respecting cider connoisseur.

Photo: @Doug88888