A Yard of Flavours
Al fresco dining often conjures up images of European holidays, where streets are adorned with charming tables and chairs, and people revel in dining late into the night. This trend has also taken hold here in the UK, with outdoor dining gaining immense popularity. We had the pleasure of chatting with Nick Saunders, the owner of DEPOT, who has put his unique spin on al fresco dining right in the heart of Cardiff Bay.
After spending years trying to secure the plot to bring his mission of infusing the Bay with more individuality and independents, Nick has created an environment that brings new energy to Cardiff Bay.
“Our vision is to create a cornerstone for independent hospitality at Cardiff Bay, making an impact not only with the scale of the venue but the aesthetic of the venue”. The venue’s personality is bright, vibrant, and exciting using 22 rainbow-coloured shipping containers which can host up to 1,000 diners, creating an environment “where people can lose themselves for a few hours”.
Tiger Yard offers a variety of different foods to cater for all tastes. This month the mouth-watering resident traders are Dirty Bird, Meating Point, Terry’s Tacos, Fire & Flank, Rock & Scallop, with guest trader Vegan Filth, among others this month. Since opening, the colourful shipping containers have been inundated with visitors wanting to experience what Tiger Yard and its traders have to offer. “Some pop in for a quick bite and a pint, and others stay from the afternoon to the evening.”
Tiger Yard places huge importance on working with local and independent businesses. Nick’s other business ventures also work with plenty of these traders. “We have worked with plenty of these traders before and will continue to do so. The Bay has long been characterised as being dominated by high street chains so we wanted to carry this value on our new venture with us. We are always on the lookout for more traders to build a relationship with!”
As many of us know, Tiger Yard isn’t Nick’s first venture in Cardiff, having founded local favourite DEPOT as a temporary food market in 2014. Subsequently, in May 2015, he was granted a licence for the location at Dumballs Road serving as their home until January 2020. Following that, they relocated to Williams Way until May 19th of this year, when they moved to a huge, new venue on Curran Road. DEPOT has since developed into an entertainment hub hosting events such as their famous and universally loved ‘Bingo Lingo’ which has been replicated all over the UK.
“Our business has been highly successful and impactful to Cardiff’s creative scene. We believe that our move contributes to the narrative of who we are, allowing us to curate fresh experiences in new venues allowing us to grow with our customers.”
After a lively summer in Cardiff Castle, we were eager to find out Nick’s big plans for the rest of the year. DEPOT has recently relocated to its new 30,000-square-foot location on Curran Road which has a capacity for 2,500 people, allowing them to host even bigger events. They are responsible for bringing a summer of live music to the city, including Sir Tom Jones, who has returned after popular demand as part of his Ages and Stages tour.
Later in the Summer, Nick will be “throwing the doors open to our new New York-inspired bar, Outpost.” The brand new all-day bar and restaurant, in Pontcanna’s new Laundry Quarter, will serve small plates as well as the all-day menu, with additional seating for private dining. The 85-cover venue will take visitors from their morning coffee right through to their working lunch, dinner and drinks. Be sure to check out their social media to ensure you don’t miss out! @outpostbarandkitchen