Previously, I left you walking back down Albany Road after a tour of the coffee shops of Wellfield Road in Roath. You should now be at the Junction of Albany Road with Mackintosh Place, Crwys Road, Richmond Road and City Road.
This 5-way junction is known as “Death Junction” and I recommend you cross with the green men as it’s a bit of an accident black-spot. However, the junction got its name because it was once the site of the Cardiff Gallows.
Before we hike up and down Crwys Road (Cathays), we will take a quick look at a few establishments around Death Junction, starting with the block at the start of Mackintosh Place.
On your right:
6 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RQ (2045 4234)
Takeaway pizza (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. Jan 2012).
8 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RQ (2031 8249)
Polish bakery (Food Hygiene Rating 0: immediate improvement necessary. May 2011).
16 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RQ (2047 3030)
Bakery and sandwich shop, takeaway and delivery (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement necessary. Nov 2011).
18 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RQ
Chinese takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Nov 2011).
22 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RQ
Indian takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement necessary. Aug 2012).
Over the road, on the sharp corner between Mackintosh Place and Crwys Road:
1-5 Mackintosh Place CF24 4RJ (2043 5901)
Built in 1878 as The Royal George Hotel, and known for many years as Clancey’s Irish Bar, but since 1999 part of the Scream pub group (under the umbrella of Mitchell and Butler); underwent renovation in 2012. Pub food, child-friendly, live music and sports on large-screens (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Dec 2011).
Cross Crwys Road; at the start of Richmond Road (in Roath):
199-201 Richmond Road CF24 3BT (2048 4480)
Pub food served from breakfast to 9pm. Series of rooms with bars having differing ambience. A popular party venue. One of 40 Varsity outlets in the UK (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory. Sept 2011).
On the NatWest building near the Varsity is a plaque commemorating two Catholic priests who were executed on this site in 1679 for practising their faith.
We are now going to walk up all the way up Crwys Road on the right (eastern) side, with the even numbers (we will walk back on the other odd-numbered side):
8 Crwys Road CF24 4NJ (2048 8070)
Café Bar Restaurant serving Mediterranean food (especially Greek) that opened in 2012. Some essential building work and mixed reviews, but seems to be back on track; has recently applied for a license for live music. Takeaway. Kurdish owner Bauer Merza replies to comments on Internet review sites, providing an insightful correspondence on the running of an independent restaurant.
14 Crwys Road CF24 4NJ (2048 7766)
Chinese takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. Jan 2012).
Over the railway bridge and then cross Woodville Road (which dead-ends on this side of Crwys Road at a railway line):
The Crwys Hotel
34 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2037 1075)
Built in 1891. It was extensively refurbished and modernized by owners Brains in the autumn 2011 and now looks very inviting. Serves pub food all day. Beer garden out back (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. July 2012).
40 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2039 0391)
A vegetarian/vegan café, with an alternative bookshop. There is a Hare Krishna connection and the food is said to be very good value for money. A venue for meditation, yoga and other activities (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. July 2012).
Phoenix Garden Chinese Restaurant
48 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2037 1075)
Chinese takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory. June 2011).
Cross Lucas Street:
50 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2038 7555)
One of 13 Subway outlets in Cardiff. Despite a couple of tables, this one is essentially just a takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Nov 2010).
56 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2039 6969)
This Pizza Hut is just a takeaway and delivery service (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. May 2011).
60 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2064 4382)
Elmer’s Take a Break Café serves traditional British café food: breakfast, lunch, snacks and coffee shop. Eat in or takeaway. Garden with outdoor seating (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Aug 2012).
62 Crwys Road CF24 4NN (2022 9977)
Takeaway and delivery pizza service (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. July 2012).
Cross Fanny Street; after the large British Heart Foundation shop and the Co-operative store, cross Gower Street.
70 Crwys Road CF24 4ND (2039 4040)
Independent pizza takeaway, also serving burgers and shish kebab (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory. Jan 2012).
XL Fish Bar
74 Crwys Road CF24 4NP (2022 6545)
Fish and chip takeaway.
It's Pizza Time
78 Crwys Road CF24 4NP (2038 8788)
Independent pizza takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. June 2012).
80 Crwys Road CF24 4NP (2023 2428)
Distinctive café for coffee and snacks (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. March 2012).
96a Crwys Road CF24 4NQ (2066 8181)
American fast-food takeaway established as long ago as 1981, noted for its fried chicken (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. April 2011)
98 Crwys Road CF24 4NQ (2039 8352)
Chinese restaurant and takeaway.
100 Crwys Road CF24 4NQ (2037 2660)
Indian takeaway, catering and delivery service. There is a second Love Curry outlet in Cardiff (Victoria Park, Canton).
New York Pizza
104 Crwys Road CF24 4NQ (2066 5180)
Takeaway pizza (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory. Feb 2012).
108 Crwys Road CF24 4NQ (2066 5180)
Family butchers (Food Hygiene Rating 3: generally satisfactory. Feb 2012).
110 Crwys Road CF24 4NQ
Convenience food store (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement necessary. May 2012).
Cross Tewksbury Street, and carry on up the hill:
114 Crwys Road CF24 4NR (2038 4263)
Bakery: sandwiches (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Nov 2010).
120 Crwys Road CF24 4NR (2022 2055)
Café with a Moroccan décor; serving breakfasts, lunches and milkshakes. A Torchwood location. Recently up for sale (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Jan 2012).
122 Crwys Road CF24 4NR
Takeway, which is currently closed for business (Food Hygiene Rating 0: immediate improvement necessary. Jan 2012).
Shah's Finest Fish and Chips
132 Crwys Road CF24 4NR (2039 5003)
Takeway fish and chips, kebabs, burgers (Food Hygiene Rating 1: major improvement necessary. May 2012).
138 Crwys Road CF24 4NR (2025 1246)
Cosy, friendly and lively café. Good for vegetarian food, though it’s all good locally-sourced food here from breakfast into the evening. Licensed with live music, film, Supper Club and other event evenings. Upcoming, for example, Raising Arizona Dinner and Movie Night (16 Oct) and Burger Night (3 Nov) (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. March 2011).
Emma James Cupcakes
146 Crwys Road CF24 4NR
Cupcake shop and tea room (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Nov 2011).
We are now at the junction at the top of Crwys Road. This intersection with Cathays Terrace, Whitchurch Road and Fairoak Road has historically marked the northern limit of Cardiff. Today there's plenty of interest north of here, of course, but Maindy, Whitchurch and other areas of Cardiff are not on this part of our tour.
Opposite is Cathays Library. If it's a pleasant day, I highly recommend turning right here and walking along Fairoak Road to Cathays Cemetery. Inside the gates is a hut with information leaflets and details of tours. You’ll find spectacular Victorian tombs, plenty of fascinating history to contemplate, and it is a great place to look at trees.
Meanwhile, back at the junction, cross Crwys Road and walk down the western side, with the odd-numbered businesses:
153/155 Crwys Road CF24 4NH (2023 2261)
Lorenza's Ristorante Italiano is one of Cardiff's longest-established Italian restaurants (and longevity is a feature of Cardiff’s Italian restaurants). Named after the owner's daughter and serving regional dishes as well as all the standards (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. Feb 2012).
151 Crwys Road CF24 4NH (2054 3705)
Mowgli’s Restaurant and Lounge is one of several restaurants in Cardiff taking an innovative approach to Indian cuisine. The specials, for instance, include mussels, crab and ostrich. Vegetarian taster menu. Whole leg of lamb. You’re certain to spot something on the menu you have not tried before (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Feb 2012).
145 Crwys Road CF24 4NH (2039 7575)
Long-established Café Bar Restaurant serving British food, including breakfasts, jacket potatoes and burgers. There’s a soccer theme going on; the Fat Bastard Breakfast should keep you going to the final whistle (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. Oct 2011).
Cross Whitchurch Place (opposite New York Pizza and Love Curry):
129 Crwys Road CF24 4NG (2023 3511)
Kasturi promises authentic Indian cuisine. Traditional curries, specials and fusion food dishes. Also takeaway. Bring own wine and beer – no corkage (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. Feb 2012).
There is a long stretch on this side of Crwys Road without any food businesses, so keep going past the Cardiff University site (named after Roy Jenkins) to Fanny Street (Domino's Pizza on the other side):
Fanny Street CF24 4EH (2034 5653)
Café Junior is a large Café Bistro in the hall at the back of Cathays Methodist Church, just off Crwys Road along Fanny Street (opposite John Truelove House). There's a children's playgroup and other church-related family activities, so lots of kids around. Membership scheme for regulars (Food Hygiene Rating 4: good. March 2011).
53 Crwys Road CF24 4ND (2037 4757)
Amalfi Ristorante Italiano.
49 Crwys Road CF24 4ND (2038 3727)
Akash Tandoori Restaurant and takeaway (Food Hygiene Rating 2: improvement necessary. June 2012).
47 Crwys Road CF24 4ND (2022 7036)
I Cook Thai
45 Crwys Road CF24 4ND
Thai cooking classes are held here.
43 Crwys Road CF24 4ND (2023 5212)
Mina Restaurant and Café Bar first opened in 1990. It used to be a just a café, but has developed into a top Lebanese restaurant under owner Biar Darwish. Authentic Lebanese cuisine, including Mezza, Shish Tawk, Lamb Couscous and Kubbabil Sayniyeh (Food Hygiene Rating 5: very good. Jan 2012).
Walk down to the Spar on the corner, opposite The Crwys Hotel.
You are now at the junction where Woodville Road cuts across Crwys Road. Take a breather. I will see you here next time, when we will walk along Woodville Road.