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A Shot in the Dark: Cardiff's hidden gem

A shot in the Dark

Francesca Gillett spent an evening at A Shot in the Dark, a hidden bar on City Road for a drink and some food and came back quite happy.

At 6pm on a Wednesday, most cafes will be winding down with their last few cappuccinos while the majority of bars will be yet to welcome their first customers. But not for A Shot in the Dark on City Road.

The stylish, dimly-lit coffee bar was heaving with both large groups of students and older couples when I walked through the doors not knowing what to expect.

Its dark exterior means the cleverly marketed café-stroke-bar is easy to miss amid the endless takeaways and spice shops, which are part of City Road characteristics.

bar review shotBut inside the bar, it is warm and welcoming with sounds of lively chatter rising above the busy noise coming from staff at the coffee machine and kitchen.

Like a fancy independent café, A Shot in the Dark offers a wide range of coffees, teas, hot chocolates, milkshakes, smoothies and cold drinks – but some with a twist.

I ordered a hot chocolate with Malibu off of an extensive menu of hot drinks fused with alcohol and was served an extremely generous ration of rum – almost two and half shot’s worth – which filled almost half a glass.bar review shot 2

For a slightly pricey £4.50, it was a surprisingly tasty combination and went down a treat while I perused the food menu which was remarkably varied for such a small kitchen.

Platters of cheeses and tapas were up on the board as well as traditional café lunch favourites like jacket potatoes and toasties.

Prices might look a tad expensive but I was told the portions, like my shot of Malibu, were incredibly generous.

A Shot in the Dark has cracked a niche with their clever marketing fusion of café meets bar.

People check in to the stylish café around the clock, for a cooked breakfast at 8am until a boozy close at midnight or 1pm on Fridays and Saturdays.

With creative drinks ideas and a chilled-out atmosphere, the café bar is a welcome relief from the hustle and bustle of City Road.​

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