There’s a reason my partner and I drove 6 hours all the way to Wales to stay at Twr y Felin – a charming contemporary art hotel at St Davids in Pembrokeshire. The renowned Blas restaurant (meaning taste in Welsh) has been awarded three AA rosettes for their exquisite food, made using locally sourced ingredients. The flavour filled dishes are delightfully presented as ‘art on a plate’ reflecting the hotel’s own truly inimitable interior style.
Created by Head Chef Sammy Owen, and supported by Development Chef Gareth Evans, the food is experimental, delicious and beautifully presented – a true culinary experience and feast for the eyes and senses.
Since opening in early 2016, Blas has received numerous awards and accolades and has become established as one of Pembrokeshire’s leading fine dining restaurants. After dining here whilst staying in this divine hotel earlier this year it was easy to see why.
The ambient dining space surrounded by evocative visual artworks is designed to reflect the simplicity, elegance and history of Twr y Felin, which occupies a former windmill, while the menu offers contemporary dining, inspired by the season and locality. Produce is carefully sourced from mainly Pembrokeshire and Welsh suppliers; the raw ingredients are fresh and where possible originate from the surrounding countryside and coast.
Formerly Head Chef at Slebech Park, Pembrokeshire Sammy Owen joined the Blas team as Sous Chef in 2016. He is passionate about creating exciting culinary experiences and has an enthusiasm for locally sourced and foraged ingredients.
Commenting on his future plans for Blas, Sammy Owen said, “I am looking forward to developing the menus and team with our aim to achieve three Rosettes and ensure that Blas is widely known as one of Wales outstanding restaurants.”
Development Chef, Gareth Evans comes from a two Michelin star background and was previously Senior Sous Chef in Heston Blumenthal’s Restaurant Dinner, in London. Born and bred in Pembrokeshire, he returned to the region when he joined the Retreats Group in 2021.
Together they oversee the entire food offer across the Retreats Group, which operates Twr y Felin Hotel as well as 12th century Roch Castle and 19th century priory, Penrhiw, which offer guest accommodation.
Dishes offered in Blas feature some of the many species of fish and seafood caught daily in the surrounding seas, while beef, duck and fowl are farmed locally. Wales is famous for its lamb which also appears regularly on the menu; foraging rewards the chefs with ingredients such as samphire and wild garlic.
From Twr y Felin, lush green fields stretch above Caerfai Bay dotted with a herd of grazing dairy cows. It is their milk that the local farmer churns into cheddar and Caerphilly organic cheese, often included in the cheese selection.
Changing regularly, the à la carte menu in this chic hotel as is served for lunch between 12pm and 3pm and dinner from 6pm until 9pm with advance booking essential.
Afternoon Tea at Twr y Felin is a delicious treat taken in the relaxing Oriel Lounge surrounded by some of the larger artworks in the hotel’s collection. Indulge in freshly cut sandwiches, cream and jam topped scones and homemade cakes, including mini Welsh Cakes, accompanied by loose leaf tea or coffee. Available between 3pm and 5pm daily priced at £25 per person, afternoon tea must be booked by 12pm on the day of dining.
Rooms are modern and luxurious in design – decadent king sized beds, large flat screen TVs, opulent deep bathtubs and pretty patios overlooking the memorising Welsh coastline. For foodies with a taste for luxury and great scenery – Two y Felin is well with the visit.
Twr y Felin is a Visit Wales four star silver hotel and won AA Hotel of the Year Wales 2017 – 2018. Roch Castle is a Visit Wales five gold star bed and breakfast and won Best Bed and Breakfast at the National Tourism Awards for 2018. Penrhiw Priory is a Visit Wales five gold star bed and breakfast and won ‘Best B&B’ at the Pembrokeshire Tourism Awards 2020.