Pystolcain

Trip Start Sep 13, 2007
1
17
18
Trip End Ongoing


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Thursday, September 27, 2007

My last full day in Wales and it was going to be packed. A sturdy breakfast fry up set me up to complete the following mission:

1. Visit a small chapel in Llantwellgglelllg
2. Get petrol from Portmadog.
3. Go to Pystolcain.
4. Eat at Tony's

1. During last night's Harvest Festival meal a picture of a small chapel on the way to Harlech was raffled off. My parents felt I could do the place a little more justice than the professional camera chap. However the chapel is walled in and is quite a tight little area so grand panoramic shots are impossible. I think I did a pretty good job, but it was difficult.

2. All done. Another 40! Lavern is very thirsty. I might get a Micra diesel. Yeah right.

3. Yesterday my dad met a friend and went off to this place and he came back with the most amazing pictures. I just had to visit. The entire walk is 3.8 miles although there is Geology walk which goes the opposite direction. Following my pictures of waterfalls and dams, I needed to continue the theme and go to the waterfalls.

I've been introduced to two new areas this year. One is Rhayader and the other is Pystolcain. Both are now vying for my favourite places in Wales. Anyway off I walked up and up and then you come to a rickety old bridge from which you are faced with a 70 foot waterfall. Now yesterday my dad climbed up to the top so it was vital I wasn't out done. I scrabbled about for a bit and did almost die when I slipped on some very wet moss, but the top of the waterfall reveals a chicane of waterfalls on the top. Beautiful.

In the evening Tony outdid himself again. As this was my last night we'd asked him to decant a bottle of Amarone. This was no ordinary bottle costing 27.50. Oh no. This was a bottle once promised to Jeff Bonsor, the chairman of Walsall FC. Tony called the shots again and said, "I'm making your main course." So I ordered the immaculate grilled sardines and waited.

In the meantime the Amarone went down magnificently. It only just beats the Cousino Macul End of the Earth, but wow what a taste. Rich and solid and with a strong nose. Very strong nose. I kept the bottle.

Eventually Tony revealed his dish. Steak Tartar. Now this is a dish very few restaurants would serve nowadays. For those who don't know it is raw steak. Sounds awful doesn't it, but believe me it isn't. I've always wanted to try it but its so rare the opportunity never presents itself, and to be honest if it did I still wouldn't have chosen it. You see if you're dealing with raw meat and egg you need to trust the chef. Tony is the only I would truly trust. So what was it?

A platter of carefully beaten raw steak and on top are rings of different ingredients:

parsley
tomatoes
egg white
courgette
egg yoke (raw)

Then you mix it all up.

Yes to some people it sounds revolting, but it was so light and tasty you could have eaten another one. The deep fried cauliflower was delicious once again.

This was a meal I doubt I can top anywhere and at that particular time I was probably the only person in Britain eating it.
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