Clark’s Pies are a Cardiff institution, and while they are to be found for sale in chip shops around South Wales, there are those who believe the only place to get a “Clarksie” is from the pie shop on Bromsgrove Street in Grangetown, where the pies are made fresh each day. For many years the shop sold only, hot or cold, large or small, pies. Yesterday, Clark’s pies launched a new pie. Blasphemy! I hear the cries of the purists. But wait it’s still a “Clarpie” it’s just differently seasoned (or spiced).
I was lucky enough to be one of the first to try one of the new Tikka flavour Clarksies. We live very close to the shop in Grangetown, and Mojo popped in and picked one up for me and very kindly dropped it into the office while it was still warm. The tikka filling won’t blow your head off, but I found it to be nicely warming and complements the rich buttery pastry case, that is the hallmark of a Clark’s pie.
On Friday, we nipped up the valley to attend the International Craft Cider Festival. It was a lovely day and a shame there were not more in attendance (hopefully more people turned up on the Saturday and Sunday).
As the name suggests, the main attraction was the cider bar, where the producers were very friendly and keen to offer samples of their work. There was excellent live music from the likes of Paper Aeroplanes, The Misers and 4th Street Traffic, and although the audience in the field was rather sparse, the free flow of cider meant the drizzle did not dampen spirits.
There was also a market hall where we picked up some delicious fudge, raspberry wine and apple and blackcurrant brandy, ideal for when we finally get round to inviting people round for dinner.
Meanwhile, back at the cider bars, we met some spaniards who showed us their traditional, Asturian, method of pouring cider from a great height (seemed a little wasteful to me – half of it splashes out on the floor), and explained that their very lightly sparkling “sidra” must be knocked back quickly, as the taste changes if you sip it (maybe this is why I had such a sore head on Saturday). I also tried “champagne style” cider from Germany, as well as the usual west country scrumpies and perries.
We had a lovely day and hopefully we will return next year.