With all eyes in Cardiff focussed intently on the imminent arrival of BrewDog it seems everyone has overlooked another new pub. The Flute and Tankard quietly opened up three weeks ago on Windsor Place, just off Queen Street (near to Buffalo Bar and opposite the Wetherspoon’s Central Bar), providing another welcome addition to Cardiff’s growing beer scene.
The Flute and Tankard is a homegrown local business, the sister pub to the famous Rummer Tavern on Castle Street and both are owned by Andrew Melbourne, described in local press clippings as ‘an entrepreneur and real ale enthusiast’. I quote these press articles since I met the man only briefly last week but he seemed confident about the future prospects of the Flute and Tankard. There aren’t many pubs on that side of town, certainly nothing in the real ale category, so the Flute and Tankard could build up a reputation as the go to real ale place in that part of Cardiff.
The Flute and Tankard occupies premises that used to be a restaurant and then a nightclub in various past lives but a good deal has been done to ‘pub-ify’ it. Some of the old elements remain, including arched mirrors and tiled floors; however, alongside the pub furniture and 1930s Art Deco style pictures of absinthe on the walls, the place has the look and feel of a Continental tavern. Even the Pink Elephant logo on the outside of the pub makes me think of European beer (see Delerium Tremens). Perhaps the Flute and Tankard should consider stocking up the beer fridge with a wide variety of Belgian ales.
The beer choice is currently similar to the Rummer, including three real ales, some bottled craft beer and various macro lagers. Red Squirrel Legally Blonde and Otley’s Boss and Hop Angeles were on tap when I visited.
It definitely has a cosy, post-work feel to it, and reminds me of Arcadia, one of the best bars in Leeds and, to a lesser extent, the House of Trembling Madness in York. There’s good potential here so it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out in the coming months.