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Top chef returns home to Cardiff for new restaurant launch


General manager Paul Bisset, left, and head chef Gareth Dobbs, right

A CHEF from Cardiff is bringing Michelin experience to a new restaurant in the city centre.

Gareth Dobbs, who has worked in two double Michelin-starred restaurants, is the head chef at Barley and Rye on Greyfriars Street, which opened last Friday.

The restaurant matches dishes to a selection of 80 beers sourced from all over the world.

Mr Dobbs is excited to be back in his home town of Cardiff after periods in London and Manchester working with Gordon Ramsey and Michel Roux Jr.

He said: “I was born here and it’s nice to come home. Cardiff is a great place to be working as a chef. It’s one of the fastest growing cities in Europe and it’s evolved so much since I grew up here.

“Food and drink culture in Cardiff is quite different to that in London. There’s more of a demand for restaurants with a relaxed atmosphere, and maybe something a bit more rustic.”

Though the restaurant has been marketed as serving Welsh food, Mr Dobbs explained that the menu brings together various cuisines.

“We have beers from all around the world, and there’s definitely a multicultural element to the food as well. You won’t see a chicken curry on my menu, but I like exotic ingredients, like cumin and garam masala,” he said.

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Rhiwbina Councillor Jayne Cowan, left, and management team member Nathan Gee, right, at the opening night

Barley and Rye will officially launch on Thursday, after opening last Friday. According to Nathan Gee, a member of the management team, the opening night was a great success.

He said: “We had about 200 people through the door and Gareth tried out some light canapés. It was a really great atmosphere.

“David Walker, Cardiff’s Lord Mayor, even did a speech. He talked about how restaurants like Barley and Rye show the city is really on the map in terms of food culture.”

Rhiwbina Councillor Jayne Cowan said: “I was delighted to be invited to the official opening of Barley and Rye. The bar is beautifully designed with a huge array of drinks and exceptional food choices.

“I’m sure it will be a destination for food lovers in the capital.”