Category Archives: Places to Eat & Drink

Ty Gwyn Cider

Well worth a visit – about a 25 minute drive from Granary Cottage

Ty Gwyn Cider, Pen Y Lan Farm, Rowlestone, Pontrilas HR2 0DL Tel: 01981 241 181   

Ty Gwyn Cider are a craft cider company run by cider maker Alex Culpin from Pen Y Lan Farm near Rowlestone, a great location with 360 degree views just off the A465 Abergavenny-Hereford road.  They have a farm cider shop and bar with a license so you can have a cider or two on site.  If the weather is nice they have a lovely deck with outside seating and lovely views of nearby Garway Hill.   Alex and his other half Laura offer free tastings to all visitors and sell a range of bottled lightly sparkling ciders as well as still draught cider and perry to take away in flagons.   The farm has fabulous views of Garway Hill and in the opposite direction, the Black Mountains, Sugar Loaf and Skirrid.  Fans of local produce will be delighted to learn that they also sell local ales, jams, chutneys and Alex’s mother’s award winning blackcurrant coulis.  They also do teas, coffees and bar snacks.  Just farther along on the same road are award winning ice cream makers Rowlestone Ice Cream. 

Fans of early 90s indie music may be interested to learn that Alex was once the bass player in the band Tiny Monroe, who’s C.V. includes prestigious appearances at Glastonbury and Reading festivals in ’94 and a support slot on the Pretenders ‘Last of the Independents’ tour as well as numerous mentions in the music press of the day. 

Their cider has won many awards and they are acknowledged as being one of the UK craft cider scene’s best known names.  All their cider is made from 100% juice and is naturally fermented for a minimum of seven months.  The shop is open from Wed – Sat 10am til 6pm and Sun 11am til 5pm.  Open Bank Holiday Mondays.  Closed in January. 

three bottle pic

The Bridge Inn, Michaelchurch Escley


The Bridge Inn is in Michaelchurch Escley, about 8 miles from Dorstone. As the name suggests, it’s by a river, so in summer it’s lovely setting if the weather is kind enough to allow sitting outside. Inside it feels cosy with it’s low ceilings, hop-covered beams and impressive stone fireplace. It also feels cosy as people tend to gather around the small bar to choose from the local ales on tap (Butty Bach included).

I am always impressed by the food at the Bridge, not least because it emerges from the tiniest kitchen imaginable. It is currently run by a local chap and his Colombian wife and the menu reflects this: some ‘traditional pub’ items with lovely local meats, alongside some more worldly adventurous items. The menu changes, but the last thing I had there was the “Singapore Sling” – a wonderful fish and shellfish Asian-inspired dish. Others round the table had meat pies, special-looking stews and even lobster.

As much as I love this pub, there is one small practical issue – that of the actual bridge! On New Years Eve we drove to the pub and left the car there overnight. Returning the next day to collect the car, we found the river had risen so much to make the bridge impassable!  (The only way out of the car park is via this bridge.) We sat it out and the water subsided over a few hours – it was still worth the trouble just to experience to Singapore Sling.