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The Ivy Cardiff: Summer dining at its finest – review

The Ivy Cardiff

The Ivy Cardiff, one of the city’s most popular restaurants has brought back its seasonal menu for the summer.

It has been almost three years since The Ivy opened its doors in November 2019 and it has been delighting diners ever since, quickly becoming a place that you must visit in Cardiff.

Throughout the year, The Ivy adds carefully selected additions to their menu for guests to enjoy and this summer is no different with their signature twists and refreshing enhancements.

Visiting The Ivy always feels like a special occasion. There is just something about it that gives off the look and feeling of fine dining. Although Mondays aren’t always the most popular days to eat out, I personally enjoy it as it gives you the chance to relax and take in the wonders on offer. This is our experience of The Ivy in the summer…

The first people you will meet when entering are the front of house team. From the moment we stepped into the building, we were met by a friendly team, a welcome and a smile. We were promptly shown to our seats (upstairs), despite being a little early.

The Ivy Cardiff

If you’ve been to The Ivy before, you will know the smell of fresh flowers that greets on arrival. It isn’t too powerful, but enough to give you a refreshing feel, which gives you a real outside inside sense. Of course, this is what the restaurant is known for, but it’s particular nice when in the summer.

Upon taking up our seats not too far from the famous blossom tree, we were met by our waiter Ammar, who really couldn’t do enough. Ammar really did go that extra mile, he was very attentive, asked about our dietary requirements and even  presented us with a lovely surprise – having picked up on the fact that it was also our anniversary. 

The menu sees some delicious additions and the long awaited return of Ivy favourites, from refreshing cocktails to light starters, delicious mains and sweet desserts. Additions include more fantastic options to the vegetarian/ vegan menu, some of which we tried.

For starters, we tried the Crispy Duck Salad and the Roasted Tomato soup from the vegetarian/ vegan menu.

The plates arrived quickly and the food was artistically presented. The Tomato Soup was freshly pour at the table by our waiter over a bed of red peppers, crumbled Greek style “cheese”, pine nuts are coriander. Even in the summer on a warm day, you can’t go wrong with soup.

Crispy Duck Salad

The Crispy Duck Salad was divine, the duck was warm and covered in a five spice dressing, accompanied by toasted cashews, watermelon, beansprouts, sesame seeds, coriander and ginger. The combination of textures and tastes really have your tastebuds dancing with joy.

Pan-fried Salmon Fillet

For mains, we chose the Pan-fried Salmon Fillet from the new summer menu, with a side of Truffle and Parmesan chips and the Minute steak.

The Salmon (with the option of being pink or cooked through, we chose the latter) was plated with asparagus spears, courgette ribbons, toasted pine nuts and a chive velouté, the pairing of the Truffle and Parmesan chips was a fantastic recommendation. The portion size was more than enough, leaving little room for dessert.

The Ivy Minute Steak

The Steak is always a popular menu choice and an Ivy classic. It was grilled thinly-beaten, with peppercorn sauce, onions, Ivy cut chips and watercress.

Almond and Blueberry Panna Cotta, featuring a limoncello sauce, almond tuile, and gold flakes.

Wanting to try both of the new summer desserts but not wanting to waste any, our waiter had a quick word with the chef who accommodated our request for a smaller portion of both new additions. The Strawberry Eton Mess Sundae with meringue, Chantilly cream, and baby basil, and the delicious Almond and Blueberry Panna Cotta, featuring a limoncello sauce, almond tuile, and gold flakes.

The surprise…

The ‘surprise dessert’

A delicious giant profiterole, with a chocolate and regular cream filling, warm chocolate drizzled over it and some strawberries to share.

The menu is complemented by a range of summer cocktails including the Bloodflower Margarita, a twist on a classic Margarita with Olmeca Altos Plata Tequila, St Germain elderflower liqueur, blood orange, lime and orange juice, and the Mango Colada, a tropical dream made with La Hechicera Reserva Familiar Rum, mango, coconut and lime.

The new summer cocktails for 2022

Unless you frequent The Ivy, you may find it difficult to spot the new summer items on the menu as there isn’t a separate menu as such. Instead, they have been blended in to complement their most popular dishes. If in doubt, always ask your server who will point you towards the new dishes to try.

These delicious additions are only with The Ivy Cardiff until the end of August, so be sure to book a table so that you don’t miss out – https://theivycardiff.com