Home Local news New pizza joint Front Room opens at Barry’s Pumphouse

New pizza joint Front Room opens at Barry’s Pumphouse

by Editor

Front Room might seem like another pizza and beer joint, but it’s not, and here’s why.

Front Room doesn’t do regular Italian or American pizza fare, and fear not this isn’t a bad thing, actually it’s a good thing. It means it comes up with original pizzas, the ingredients of which can be locally sourced.

Barry And District News: Front Room has opened in the premise where Alium used to beFront Room has opened in the premise where Alium used to be (Image: Newsquest)

You might not know it, but owner of Front Room, former Michelin restaurant chef Dave Wigley, knows all to well the “rules around pizzas” within the culinary industry – from HAVING to have mozzarella to restaurants doing ridiculous things like flying their flour in from Italy to make their pizzas “authentically Italian” instead of using local flour suppliers (we’ll get to Mr Wigley’s flour and dough in a moment).

Front Room is unique in many ways.

It’s totally independent so can choose whatever it wants to stock – including an impressive range of local beers – it’s got an extensive lunch and breakfast menu and it doesn’t want to portray the vibe rack’em high, feed them pizza, and then move them along.

Barry And District News: A chilled vibe in Front RoomA chilled vibe in Front Room (Image: Newsquest)

Mr Wigley made the point of saying you’re not going get someone coming along with a giant pepper grinder here. The concept behind Front Room is just that – a front room, a living room, a space to chill.

You don’t just have to come in for special occasions and ‘pizza night’, pop in for lunch and pick up a coffee, or come in for breakfast and enjoy something as simple as beans on toast to kick start your day.

For Mr Wigley, who has been a chef for almost 30 years and most recently was the baking success behind hugely popular bakery Ground in Penarth, Front Room really is a watermark in his career – the first place he has owned.

Barry And District News: Owner of Front Room Dave WigleyOwner of Front Room Dave Wigley (Image: Newsquest)
We asked, why pizzas? He replied, because you can produce quality and don’t have to charge the earth. Why Barry? Mr Wigley replied, because he loves it…

“This is a restaurant to make pizza that makes sense to Barry,” said Mr Wigley.

“There’s no Peroni on tap, no big peppermills, this is no rules pizza, we are not affiliated to any big companies, everything in here is meaningful to us.”

So, on that phrase; “no rules pizza” – I mean, a whole section of the menu is headlined ‘rule breakers’. You’ll get a different take on the classics like margherita (‘mega rita’ at Front Room) and pepperoni (‘proper ronnie’) and you’ll also get the unusual – like the ‘one with no cheeses’, or ‘the Persian’ (we had, we liked).

Barry And District News: Front Room's pizza - we got a split Persian and mega ritaFront Room’s pizza – we got a split Persian and mega rita (Image: Newsquest)

Barry And District News: Fresh independent ingredients and the dough is made of flour milled from wild flowersFresh independent ingredients and the dough is made of flour milled from wild flowers (Image: Newsquest)

And back to that dough – no, Front Room’s dough isn’t milled next to the Colosseum in Rome at extortionate export cost, no no no, instead, they use wild flowers – you read right – wild flowers.

Mr Wigley sources his flour from company Wild Farms who make their flour out of wild flowers.

Barry And District News: Fried dough and dip - stunning!Fried dough and dip – stunning! (Image: Newsquest)

Does it work? Yes it does.

Barry And District News: We stuffed our gob - don't let this photo put you off your food, Front room has to be tried!We stuffed our gob – don’t let this photo put you off your food, Front room has to be tried! (Image: Newsquest)

The pizzas are stunning, the dough crisp, light and not greasy – we also had the extraordinary fried dough and dip – no words will do justice, it’s has to be tried. In fact, Front Room has to be tried.

Front Room is now open at the Pumphouse near Goodsheds (where Alium used to be), Wednesday to Saturday 9am to 10pm.

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