A Foodie’s Guide To Pembrokeshire

By Ellie Smith

1 year ago

Chef Simon Crockford takes us on a food tour of the Welsh region

Tucked away in a corner of south west Wales, Pembrokeshire is renowned for its unspoilt beauty. It’s home to over 186 miles of coastline, which means not only endless pretty beaches and coastal walks, but also an abundance of top-quality produce. This is utilised by chefs across the region to whizz up fresh, creative dishes for restaurants aplenty. One of the best is Simon Crockford, former Wales Chef of the Year and Head Chef at dulse restaurant, the Celtic Manor Group’s new Tŷ Hotel Milford Waterfront which opened last year. Here he shares his top recommendations for restaurants in Pembrokeshire.

A Foodie’s Guide To Pembrokeshire

Simon Crockford

Simon Crockford

‘I grew up in Pembrokeshire, right by the sea in Tenby, before moving to head the kitchens of the Celtic Collection’s five-star hotels in Newport and Cardiff. I’ve cooked for all manner of famous faces including Barack Obama and Tiger Woods, and always tried to sneak in produce from Pembrokeshire’s bountiful larder into my menus. 

‘To be given the opportunity to open dulse restaurant, 15 minutes from where I grew up, is an absolute dream come true. We really are spoilt in our little corner of Wales as the range and quality of the produce is world class.

‘I love the fact that I can literally see the seafood being hauled in by local fisherman, that the vegetables come from nearby farms and that I can use plenty of the restaurant’s namesake ‘dulse’ – the locally harvested seaweed bursting with ‘umami’ flavour – throughout the menu. 

Best Food & Drink Spots in Pembrokeshire

The Cellar, Tenby, Pembrokeshire

As a Tenby lad, it’s great to see new places opening up. I love a cocktail, so the town’s new subterranean bar, The Cellar, is a great place for a cocktail fix. The mixologist is really talented and has even managed to weave some local Pembrokeshire ingredients into his experiential creations. theqube-tenby.co.uk

Umi, Tenby

Another Tenby favourite of mine is the Japanese restaurant Umi. The menu is really interesting, delicate, and fresh on one hand yet packed with that umami flavour that is so delicious. umitenby.com

Beach in Pembrokeshire

Getty Images

Scoop Ice Cream, Milford Haven

For the creamiest ice cream it’s hard to beat a scoop from Scoop, right beside dulse on Milford Waterfront. Carl and the family-run team use milk from local farmers at nearby Steynton which is maybe why it tastes so delicious. Try the jammy dodger or one of the fresh fruit sorbets. the-scoop.co.uk

The Shed, Porthgain

I’m not into too much fuss especially when the food is fresh which is why The Shed is a go-to for me. Right on the Pembrokeshire Coast Path beside the harbour at Porthgain, it serves sensational fish and chips. theshedporthgain.co.uk

Cwlbox, Wiseman’s Bridge

I don’t know what’s best, the sea views or the food at Cwlbox. The street food trailer may not look much, but for those looking for some of the best beach food around, Cwlbox doesn’t disappoint. The fresh fish burgers are really tasty, so too are the salad boxes and the morning pastries. Seafood and local produce at its best and right beside Wiseman’s Bridge near Saundersfoot Beach. Check them out on Instagram

Tap and Tan, Tenby 

Tap and Tan is an exciting, collaborative venue bringing you the very best in independent craft beer and live fire cookery from the well-established team that heads up FEAST. The Sunday lunch is by far the best around, packing flavour into every dish. tenbybrewingco.com

Stackpole Inn

This has to be my go-to place when wanting some local fresh produce. A scenic drive through the Pembrokeshire coastal road takes you to the award-winning culinary team, who create truly stunning plates of food. Lunch and dinner menus use the best local ingredients – this is an experience that you look forward to going back for. stackpoleinn.co.uk

Dennis Café, Tenby 

If you are up early and wanting breakfast, Dennis Cafe is a must, with its daily specials such as locally-made black pudding, smoked salmon and avocado, and the classic full Welsh breakfast or American pancakes with all the toppings. Set on the Castle Beach, you can watch the boats sail out to Caldey Island or just day dream, watching the waves crash onto the sand. Check them out on Instagram

Where To Stay

Capel Swn Y Mor

Capel Swn Y Mor, a cottage in Pembrokeshire

Making the most of its tall arched windows, former Victorian Chapel, Capel Swn Y Mor offers fabulous sea views of Amroth Beach. Sun streams through the open plan living area and a wonderful over-the-beach balcony (which doubles as an alfresco dining space) add to the charm of this tastefully styled three-bedroom property. In the heart of the village and dog-friendly, it is also well placed to explore the south Pembrokeshire coastline. A favourite jaunt is to take the Coast Path just opposite the house and enjoy a walk beside the sea and through a short network of tunnels to Wiseman’s Bridge – where a great sunny pub garden awaits at the Wiseman Bridge Inn. Tenby, Saundersfoot and Stackpole are also a short drive away.

BOOK: A seven-night stay for six people from £689. coastalcottages.co.uk, 01437 765765

Arch Barn

The Arch Barn, Pembrokeshire

Arch Barn is a delightful barn conversion set down a private lane in rolling countryside, yet really close to Broad Haven South and the villages of Bosherston and Stackpole (with its lovely pub). Once a granary, it retains all its original features and character with wonderful high arched ceilings, beams and wooden floors. A proper suntrap, it sleeps six across three bedrooms. The Coastal Path can be accessed just a mile from the property where walkers can discover hidden bays and sandy beaches. 

BOOK: Sleeping six across three bedrooms, a week arriving 15th April costs £880. coastalcottages.co.uk, 01437 765 765

Featured image: Getty Images