I’ve made no secret of the fact that I love a good pub. There is something so welcoming about them, especially on a cold winter’s day following a good walk. We regularly used to end up calling into The Pelican, Ogmore-by-Sea, after a long bracing walk with the kids and our puppy along Ogmore beach.
We were gutted when The Pelican pub shut last year and super chuffed when it reopened. It does after all have the perfect spot – stunning views of Ogmore Castle and its on the main thoroughfare back from Ogmore beach. If you haven’t been before it’s worth taking a brief detour down to Ogmore Castle and having a wander pre grub.
Restaurant Review of The Pelican, Ogmore-by-Sea
We were very keen to try out The Pelican, Ogmore-by-Sea, under its new management. On driving into the car park, first impressions are good. The exterior is chocolate box pretty with its traditional stone building and colourful blue painted framed windows.
The inside of The Pelican is equally charming, it hasn’t changed that much, just some subtle changes. It is rustic and cozy. Old wooden tables, mismatched comfy sofas and chairs, flagstone slate floors, brightly painted walls and a roaring log burner. The restaurant with a fresh lick of paint feels nicer than before. There are white washed walls, parquet flooring and candled topped oak tables. So far, so good!
More than just dog friendly, dogs are positively welcomed at The Pelican..
As we had our pooch with us we sat in the bar area. Without doubt, the most welcomed guests in The Pelican are the dogs. Dogs are allowed welcomed in the main bar areas, they even have their own dog station where you can help your pooch to a water bowl and some treats. The staff are clearly dog lovers too. It’s fair to say our pooch got a lot more attention than us or the kids!
The service on the whole was pretty friendly, even though at times it felt like you were getting in the way of the bar staff having a good time themselves. The service was also notably slow and they were in no rush to clear our tables or to check if we were happy with our food.
The Pelican menu is a carnivores idea of heaven…
We were brought the menu on trendy clip boards and some options are on the blackboards. The choice is ideal for any carnivore, with some hefty meaty dishes to try. But there are some pub classics too such as beer battered fish and chips or a steak burger. For the veggies there is limited choice, but apparently they do host a meat free Monday evening, where vegetarians are more catered for.
We opted for the mini bangers and mustard mayo and some garlic bread to share while we perused the menu and decided on our main dishes. These came quickly enough and were devoured equally as quickly, washed down nicely with a cold pint of larger for me and a pint of Doombar for the other half.
Mains followed, after a pretty long wait of over 30 minutes, and despite the pub not being particularly full. Thankfully, the food was worth the wait and as we were in no major rush, was ok, if not ideal.
I had the braised beef cheeks, with glazed parsnips on a bed of creamy mash with a rich beefy jus (£15). The beef was tender and fell apart easily and was very rich with the flavour from the sauce. We ordered a side of savoy cabbage and this was just as it should be, well seasoned and not at all soggy. I was glad we had ordered it as otherwise it would have been mainly void of vegetables.
My husband opted for the Pressed pork belly with crackling served on apple puree with pots in the pan (£13.50). Again a very rich dish with a flavoursome jus and perfectly crunchy crackling. The pots in the pan were a little gimmicky, and I’m not too impressed with the taste of purple potato, but hey not much to complain about here.
Lets not forget about the kids…
The childrens menu has a very good selection. You can either opt for half portions off the main menu or choose from typical kids fare such as sausages, fish fingers or a grazing board of chicken, carrot sticks, apple, hummus and bread sticks (all £5).
My more adventurous ten year old choose the roast chicken, with spring onion croquette, mushroom and kale. He certainly tucked into it with gusto. I had a taste and it was seriously good. Succulent chicken served with the most delicious croquettes. What with their crispy shell and melt in your mouth spring onion and potato filling, they were just too yummy for words.
Both my other two little ones chose sausages, peas and chips. Even though they’d already feasted on the sharing sausages. The sausages were also of good quality and the chips were proper chips. With this sort of pub restaurant I’d expect nothing less.
To finish off, the kids chose the sweet shop sundae and the sticky toffee pudding sundae (both £3.50). The first was essentially some ice-cream with some sweeties and an ice-cream sauce. The star was the sticky toffee sundae; with generous pieces of gooey sticky toffee pudding in-between scoops of vanilla ice-cream. I was lucky that my son was in a sharing mood so I can sample of few spoonfuls and I was in dessert heaven.
So what did we think of The Pelican, Ogmore-by-Sea?
Well we certainly liked the Pelican enough to go back again. We returned shortly after as I also wanted to see whether the slow service was a one off. This time I opted for the more basic pub grub. I sampled the fish and chips (£12.50) whilst my husband chose the Gammon topped with a fried egg and a slice of pineapple. Again the food was very good, perfect crispy batter and really good chips. It is also a nice touch that they donate 25p for every order of fish and chips to the local St.Brides Primary School.
However, despite decent food, a wait of over 45 minutes for fish and chips and gammon, is not on. It does say on their website to be patient for their freshly cooked food during busy periods, but it wasn’t even busy. My patience was also dented by the fact that there was no acknowledgement of the wait from the staff. It’s a shame, as whilst we will return for the food, and its great location, I wonder whether other diners will be so forgiving of the service.
All in all a good gastro pub. I just hope it will address the service issues to make it a really great one.
Telephone: 01656 856 464
Address: 73 – Pelican In Her Piety, Ogmore Road, Bridgend, CF32 0QP
Family Friendly Rating: ****
High Chairs – Yes
Baby Changing – No
Childrens Menu – Yes
Dog friendly: Yes