The New House Hotel
Perched on a divine spot on Caerphilly Mountain with views over the Bristol Channel, this wonderful Georgian manor house has figured highly on my list of places to pay a visit, if only to have a nose. I didn’t hesitate when asked if we’d like to review it.
Having crunched our way across the terrace, with its ornate fountain and stunning views, to the reception we were ushered into the sensitively restored dining room, replete with original coving and panelled bay windows. A grand and elegant setting for a meal.
Though technically, a Best Western, The New House Hotel is independently owned which means it has a lovely, family run atmosphere, typified by Tim, our waiter, whose helpful and happy demeanour relaxed us at once. He guided us through the menu, a mix of continental themes and locally sourced ingredients.
Initially reticent, I was persuaded to try the smoked trout escabeche to start. Unlike some, and to my relief, this was a delicate smoke that allowed the taste of the soft, flaky trout to shine. The accompanying baby potatoes and vegetables in a sweet but tart jus, made from a base of white wine vinegar and star anise was an inspired companion.
After an eternity mulling, I opted for the house favourite, Usk sourced roast rump of lamb. Beautifully cooked (pink), tender, bursting with lovely lambness and with a cracking basil and mint pesto crust, an unorthodox mix of flavours that worked exceptionally well. I’d venture better than mint on its lonesome. Not only did A’s mushroom and hazelnut Wellington hit her spot, even I, dedicated carnivore, had to accept that it did taste pretty special – hearty and satisfying with an almost meaty substance to it.
And the coup de gras. Homemade Bara Brith with spiced plums and clotted cream. My. Word. Yes. It was rich but I can understand why the Chef is proud of it. An intense mix of Christmas flavours worth savouring any time of the year. I’m reliably informed the chocolate and raspberry pudding was pretty special too.
New House Country Hotel
Cardiff CF14 9UA
T. 029 2052 0280