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Baguettes & Bagels - Cathays' local luxury

Baguettes and Bagels CathaysLunchtime is an important time of the day, it's the perfect time to unwind and relax before tackling the challenges the afternoon brings. For many, meals at lunchtime may include baguettes, sandwiches, pasta dishes or salads and many choose to buy pre-prepared to save time in their busy schedule.

Thankfully, Cathays is full of lovely little local shops that sell baguettes, sandwiches and more. Today, we’re looking at Baguettes and Bagels on Miskin Street. Situated in the heart of Cathays, it offers handmade baguettes and bagels with gorgeous freshly made fillings. What’s more, you can get these hunger quenching meals for a very reasonable price!

Here at Capital Properties we had the privilege of sitting down with owner Margaret Murphy who spoke in more detail about the business and its history.

History

The business was originally set up on Salisbury Road in 1994 when the owners realised that there wasn't a place people could buy fresh bread without having to walk quite a distance. At the time the store was the first sandwich bar in Cathays! The shop on Salisbury Road eventually closed and they moved to their current address on the corner of Miskin St and Senghennydd Road.

Margaret said:

“We are extremely proud that the business has been going for 20 years, it’s quite an achievement for an independent business. We’ve grown considerably and so has our audience, while students make up the majority of our customers we’ve also got a range of taxi drivers, business owners and university staff that regularly visit”.

Baguettes & Bagels have also served a number of famous customers over the years, these include the likes of Donna Air and Jo Brand. Margaret also informed us that they’ve delivered bread and baguettes to the English football legend Gary Lineker!

Location

Baguettes and Bagels is situated at 158 Miskin St, Cardiff, right in the heart of Cathays, or ‘studentville’ as it’s more commonly known. Its location means it’s a great place for students studying at Cardiff University as the Student Union is just a short walk away. Opposite the shop is the Cardiff Business Technology Centre which is always full of hungry mouths every lunchtime!

Food

Margaret MurphyAs the title suggests, the shop sells a range of handmade baguettes and bagels, along with a selection of bottled drinks and crisps. The best part of handmade baguettes is choosing the fillings, and there are plenty available here. Including tandoori chicken, bacon, tuna, a range of cheeses and this writer’s personal favourite – chicken tikka! All are freshly prepared and taste delicious.

The store’s most popular fillings are chicken & bacon and students are also particularly fond of the bread pudding available. Speaking about the range of fillings Margaret said:

“We get a lot of people wanting different things in their sandwiches, some people don’t like tomatoes and some don’t like cheese, that’s why we offer such a range. Our most popular is the chicken and bacon filling. Personally I enjoy mustard, ham and smoked cheese. However, I’m also accustomed to smoked cheese and roasted vegetables”.

Prices and opening hours

Like most individual stores that sell baguettes, bagels and sandwiches the prices are slightly more expensive than if you bought a similar product in Tesco or Asda. However, the quality of food on offer here is much better. A meal deal costs around £4 with a bottled drink and crisps, whereas individual baguettes and bagels cost between £1.50 and £2.50 depending on your size and filling. A small price to pay for such luxury!

The store currently opens 9am – 4pm Monday to Friday and 10am – 2pm on Saturdays during term dates. They don’t currently have a card machine so remember to get cash out before visiting, however they are planning on introducing card payments before the end of the year. They also offer a range of seasonal special offers, so check back throughout the year for the best deals.

Atmosphere

It’s important to remember that Baguettes and Bagels isn't a coffee shop or a restaurant so it’s not a place you can go for a few hours to unwind. However the staff are extremely friendly and welcoming and there are also a couple of seats and tables outside, as well as small park just across the road so you can enjoy the sun (when it’s available). It’s location within Cathays means it’s a great place for students to meet up, grab some lunch and then head off to lectures, shopping in the centre of Cardiff or back to their student accommodation.

A final word from Margaret

We've spoken a lot about the range of food on offer as well as the high quality of service you can expect to receive, but Margaret summed up everything perfectly when she said:

“Our motto is, we wouldn't serve anything to customers that we wouldn't eat ourselves! That’s why all our bread is freshly baked in store and why all the meat we use is 100% meat. If you want a nice, fresh, individual baguette with your choice of filling at a reasonable price, then Baguettes and Bagels is for you”.

Verdict

Baguettes and Bagels is a lovely baguette shop and one of the best places in Cathays to grab lunch. The food is freshly prepared and tastes so much better than store bought products. The staff are very welcoming and its location in the heart of Cathays makes it a perfect place for students to grab lunch before continuing on their travels.

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