The warm Atlantic Ocean currents enable the West Wales area’s growing season to start earlier and produce many early crops (such as Pembrokeshire Potatoes), and have a longer grazing quality period, enriching ingredients for the Welsh food and drink industry. From the Pembrokeshire coast to Swansea Bay, the long tradition of fishing and farming enables people to sample the best fresh shellfish and fish, beef, lamb, vegetables, fruit, ice cream, cheeses, beer and spirits in restaurants offering traditional Welsh fare, and eateries in quirky or usual venues.
The Retreats Group are three award winning luxury boutique hotels on the St Davids peninsula, where coasteering was invented. Twr y Felin Hotel, a former windmill has its own contemporary art gallery and spaces for events and meetings. The two rosette 'Blas' (Welsh for taste) restaurant is also located here. It offers a menu influenced by the seasons and showcases local produce. Roch Castle Hotel and Penrhiw Hotel offer 5* luxury rooms with a breakfast designed to ensure Wales is featured in its local produce from its quality, diversity and taste.
For a team building experience delegates can forage for ingredients on nearby beaches and create their own dishes in the group’s kitchen. Available for private hire, bespoke facilities are offered for conferences and meetings. For wellbeing delegates can walk stretches of the Wales Coast Path from the hotels or try kayaking, surfing, and golf.
At the Grove of Narberth hotel, the dishes served at the multi award winning three AA Rosette Fernery Restaurant contain ingredients grown in the Kitchen Garden as well as local lamb, beef, fish, shellfish, charcuterie and artisan chesses. The Grove is also a luxurious business retreat providing a calm location for successful business meetings, incentive breaks, and team building events.
The menu of St Brides Hotel and Spa in Saundersfoot features the finest Pembrokeshire produce and locally landed fish. Fresh ingredients are simply cooked to bring out the best use of natural flavours. The menus change regularly to ensure the best produce of each season is served. Meeting rooms are available for conferences of up to 120 delegates. The hotel is ideally placed for team building and incentive activities such as walking, cycling and water sports.
Mansion House, Llansteffan stands in gardens overlooking the Towy estuary. Its Moryd Restaurant has two AA Rosettes and the hotel is an ideally placed getaway. The food is fresh and contemporary with a strong local provenance; seafood from Milford Haven, Welsh lamb and beef from local farms, ales from Carmarthenshire breweries and, when available, coracle-caught Sewin from the Towy. The hotel offers spaces to host events.
Beach House Restaurant, awarded a Michelin star in 2019, can be found at Oxwich Bay on the Gower Peninsular, the source of much of its produce. Its tasting menus are designed to be enjoyed as a whole table dining experience, and the other dishes offered showcase the sumptuous local ingredients and are complemented by the extensive wine list. The restaurant can be hired for exclusive use for business events. Many activities and cultural attractions are available to delegates on the Gower.
Less formal options
The Pembrokeshire Beach Food Company introduces Café Môr on the surfing beach of Freshwater West in Pembrokeshire. It has been cooking the finest local seafood and seaweeds since 2013 and has won multiple national awards for its beach/street food. The lobster and crab in the rolls on the menu are caught locally, and served alongside meat and vegan burgers. For a team building experience try a surf or paddleboard lesson with Outer Reef Surf School at this beach. Or stay at the multi-purpose Stackpole Outdoor centre which has accommodation and facilities for corporate groups, and offers coasteering and kayaking with instructors.
Grub Kitchen near St Davids (main picture) can be found at the award winning visitor attraction, academic centre of excellence, and working farm - The Bug Farm. In the restaurant, sample cricket and chickpea falafels, a bug tasting board with a selection of plain and seasoned insect treats, or Welsh cakes with (or without) cinnamon mealworms, alongside traditional dishes. The menu also includes locally sourced ingredients such as Grub farm lamb, Welsh Cawl and Caerfai cheddar. Their aim is to integrate edible insects with twists on popular and well-loved dishes. Cricket cookies can be bought on site.
The Warren is an award winning café, restaurant and bar in the heart of Carmarthen serving simple, wholesome food focussing on local, seasonal and organic produce. Try the street food served on the first Sunday of every month or their popular vegetarian and vegan dishes with organic wines. The nearby National Botanic Garden of Wales is an ideal place to hold a meeting or event and has different sized spaces.
The Ginhaus Deli in Llandelio has a huge selection of Welsh and world-wide products including cheese, wine, olives, artisan breads and charcuterie along with an impressive collection of premium gins. The brunch and dinner menus showcase the local produce this small restaurant uses. Its local Coaltown Coffee is a favourite.
Beer, wine and spirits
Pembrokeshire has 300 hours more sunshine annually than the UK average figure, making it the ideal home for three vineyards. Jabajack Vineyard Restaurant with rooms near Whitland can create bespoke events tailored to any business objectives. There are breakout rooms for meetings, vineyard tours and wine tastings packages for delegates to sample its award winning ‘White House’ wine and sparkling 'Welsh Blush', as well as team building events. The Bistro restaurant caters for up to 60 delegates and has received awards for its menu featuring seasonal fresh and locally sourced ingredients.
Cwm Deri Vineyard in Narberth produces white, rose and sparkling wines and offers wine tasting and tours around its vineyard. It grows its own fruit and vegetables to complement the locally sourced produce featured on the menu in its restaurant, and is able to cater for events and meetings for up to 50 people.
In the Welsh Wind distillery near Cardigan specialises in producing bespoke gin, and have won many awards for its Tenby Dry Gin and Solva Dry Gin plus others. It has been shortlisted for two Great British Food Awards in 2020 – Classic Gin and Best Start Up. Looking for new products, it has diversified into craft vinegar and plans are in place for a West Wales Whisky. Visitors can join a gin making experience which lasts around two hours, or a gin tasting experience.
Harbwr Tenby Harbour Brewery is an award winning craft brewery and taproom, brewing a range of core ales including Caldey Lollipop, La Nossa Signora and MV Enterprise. Situated just above the historic and beautiful Tenby Harbour, it also offers seasonal brews such as Trawlers Dread, Gatland’s Law and Lions. A tour and taster session are available for groups of four to 40 people. The tap room is available for private hire for any meeting or event and caters for up to 40 delegates.
Cygnet Distillery in Swansea offers a guided tour where the secrets of blending and mixing the herbs and spices to make the gin are revealed. For an incentive delegates are greeted at Juniper Place with a cocktail before embarking on the tour and tasting of three different gins. There is also a package that includes a two course meal.
Coles Brewery and Distillery established in 1999 at the White Hart Thatched Inn in Llanddarog produces whiskey, gin, vodka and Wales’ first rum. Its craft ales range from golden to stout as well as some unusual flavours including beetroot and nettle chilli. They also produce cider and fruit brandies. Take a distillery tour to experience the entire process from grain to glass and enjoy freshly prepared food in the pub’s restaurant.
Gower Brewery, Swansea was established in 2011 and is located in the UK’s first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the Gower Peninsula. They ensure the high quality ingredients and old fashioned, traditional methods are used to produce Gower Gold, Lighthouse and Best Bitter to the highest standard. Tours for 10 to 20 people are held during the early evening.
Bluestone Brewing in Cilgwyn, Pembrokeshire is a farm-based brewery in the Preseli Hills, and its beers at this fledgling brewery include Bedrock Blonde (4%), a straw-coloured ale with German and Czech hops. For an incentive experience meet the brewer and sample the beers in the onsite Tap Room. During the COVID-19 pandemic the brewery diversified production and turned its beer into craft malt vinegars.