Saturday mornings for me are my mornings. Sundays in my opinion are for lazing in bed for Saturdays for me seem such a lovely busy day, they're the days I try to fill with nice things, the days I do a lot but also enjoy myself cos #weekend. I don't wake at the crack of dawn but I still like to get up relatively early and then I have the morning to myself whilst my boyfriend sleeps in and I make a big cuppa and settle down on the sofa with a big bowl of fruit, something trashy on catchup and my bullet journal.
The last thing I would think of doing on a Saturday is braving the centre of Cardiff. For those who haven't experienced it, the word that springs to mind is 'mayhem'. It's verryy busy, Primark is like a warzone and you can't park in the multi storey for love nor money. Cardiff on a Saturday morning was not my idea of a good time....that is until I had an email asking if I'd like to review breakfast.
There are some things as a blogger I think you fully expect you'll never do and for me top of the list has always been 1. Fashion posts and 2. Food reviews.
That being said there is nothing more exciting or more likely to grab my attention than a PR email about food, you had me at hello. At the beginning of the month I was invited, along with lots of other lovely bloggers to bring a plus one and review the new menu at Jamie's Italian in Cardiff on Saturday 10th and I was basically signed up before I even considered Saturday = Cardiff and who I was going to convince to get up that early.
For those of you who know Cardiff reasonably well, Jamie's Italian is on the outside of St Davids 2, on the corner opposite John Lewis at the bottom of The Hayes where the big old sculpture is. It's basically opposite Caroline Street and you can easily park in the St Davids carpark and walk through the shopping centre and out the bottom doors to get to it.
Last Saturday I decided to take my Mum with me. My boyfriend, my friends, my brother and his fiancé have all reaped the benefits of me being a blogger and she'd been working hard all week redecorating my old bedroom so I thought she deserved some blogger press perks. We booked our table for 8.15 but traffic unsurprisingly let us down and it was more like half past before we rocked up apologising profusely - yet nobody batted an eyelid.
The restaurant was open early to bloggers for the event and everyone had brought their partner or their friends or their kids along, there were whole families enjoying themselves and the atmosphere was very chilled - that perfect Saturday morning vibe.
When you think of breakfast you probably don't think of chain restaurants and you almost certainly wouldn't think of Jamie's - I certainly didn't. Breakfast menus are being tried and tested in Jamie's and the Cardiff branch is one of the first to offer it so I didn't know what to expect when we rocked up.
So cue my surprise when I find out you've got your classic breakfast dishes andddd some Jamie's twists when the (very sunny yellow) menu was placed in front of me. You've got your Full, Half, Kids & Veggie Monty's which are basically your classic fry up, bacon and sausage sarnies, fruit and then the other breakfast classics which I skimmed over because the bacon buttie had already sealed the deal in my mind but miiight (don't quote me) have included things like Eggs Benedict and the like.
My Mum decided to opt for the Half Monty because she doesn't like black pudding (which apart from portion sizes is the only real difference) but she's not a massive fan of beans so ordered it without. There was a little confusion when the waiter misheard me and thought I asked for no bacon not baked beans but when I realised and asked they brought out a plate with more rashers on for her in super quick time so her meal was still hot and I got to keep the beans so winner winner.
I was sold on the bacon buttie before I ever even considered anything else and it didn't disappoint. I'm not a massive fan of smoked bacon but this was just slightly smoked and really salty which was delicious. It's served on toasted sourbread which was lovely but it's huge so make sure to cut with your knife and fork if you're in polite company. My Mum's baked beans was an added bonus too because I effectively made beans on toast with one of the slices of bread which was yum. We both had cups of tea with a little milk jar and sugar packets which I LOVE because it's always so much nicer to make it yourself how you like it isn't it?
I don't know how much the teas were but the Half Monty was £6.95 and I think the bacon sandwich was £4.95 and the portions are decent, neither of us were hungry until about 3pm which when you're feeding two ladies who normally faint if they don't eat every two hours is mighty impressive.
As for the restaurant itself if you've been there for a meal or been to any other Jamie's around the country you'll know what to expect. If you haven't been, the Cardiff branch is set over multiple floors so plenty of room if you're having dinner but the bloggers breakfast was neatly tucked into one side which meant we all had a cracking view for photos of the bar in the middle.
The decor is a bloggers dream - I mean just look at those chairs. My Mum went to the loo at one point and came back and was like "there's loads of bloggers over there taking photos of a bowl of limes"....she might not get it but we do. It was the dream to photograph, the setting is fab and it's not dark and dingy which you often find a restaurant can be. There was plenty of natural light from the biiigggg windows and doors at the front and make taking snaps of the grub before it went cold super easy and no post editing yay!
Overall? Sold. It might not be the first place you think of for breakfast but it's definitely worth considering if you want somewhere new. Breakfast is served between 9am - 11am and the staff and the atmosphere were ace, you couldn't fault them and I heard every blogger say a massive thank you as they were leaving.
Getting up early and going to Cardiff on a Saturday might have been my idea of a nightmare a few weeks ago but it's all change. It was absolutely lovely to go out with my Mum for breakfast, it always feels like a bit of a treat getting brekkie out doesn't it and doing it in the familiarity of my own home city was delightful, not least because I got to give something back for my Mum to enjoy. We spent the rest of the morning shopping for wedding shoes (both got some, very different price range) and it was so nice to be full up from food and not have to think about home, about who was back, who we had to give lifts there to, the washing, the cat, the cleaning...just enjoy a morning out that we wouldn't have done otherwise.
Oh and FYI Cardiff people, the St Davids carpark is dead quiet at that time of day, nearly all the shops are already open and town is pleasant. By the time we were leaving at 12 it was FULL and manic had resumed - get in early if you can.
A huge thanks to Jamie's Italian Cardiff staff and PR for inviting us to breakfast and for giving this Mum and daughter team a cute morning out we'd never had considered otherwise. You have us sold on this breakfast malarkey!
Disclaimer: Mine and my Mum's breakfast and drinks were free in exchange for review however all photos, wording and bacon inhaling is very much my own.
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