Mae Maria

Opening Times
Mon - Thurs9am – 11pm
Fri9am – 11.30pm
Sat9am–11.30pm
Sun10am – 10pm
Casual DiningBoozing

Contact
029 2039 9174
Address
435 COWBRIDGE ROAD EAST
View map

Why we love it

Good Portuguese cuisine is simple, delicious, founded on traditional recipes and full of tantalising morsels from the surf and the turf. Great Portuguese cuisine goes one step further: it warms your heart, flashes a smile across your face, brings back memories and makes you feel like you're sat around the dining table at home.

When she arrived in Cardiff in 2007 (after a few years of study in Oxford), Laura da Silva missed the feeling of great Portuguese food. After searching high and low for a culinary home-from-home that would satisfy her yearning for food cooked how only Maria (her mum) knew how, she made a copy of her mum's recipe book and decided to open her own place near Victoria Park named, naturally, after her mum: Mãe Maria.

The result is a taverna-inspired bar, deli and restaurant on Cowbridge road that feels like it's been plucked straight from a locals' side-street in Porto. On Saturday evenings, the red wine flows and live music washes over a crowd of friendly Canton locals; in the mornings the air is alive with the aroma of freshly roasted coffee, lightly baked bites and the restocking of the deli fridge; come the late afternoon, low-key tables start to fill and a hubbub of conversation breaks out between mouthfuls of simply cooked Bachalau Dourado, Bitoque or Lombo de Porco (lightly seasoned and served, naturally, with hand-cut Portuguese fries).

The clean, spacious interior gives you ample space to relax (even when full, Mae Maria rarely feels busy), and the service is always attentive (waiters often talk diners through their meals after delivering the plates, especially if Portuguese specialities or house favourites are involved). To top it off, the food is made like the business is run - with love and understatement (and, of course, with ample servings of carbs and protein) - so a meal at Mae Maria is enough to make everybody feel like a genuine house guest of Laura.

Highlights

With a Portuguese Deli counter, restaurant, brunch area and tapas bar, you'll feel right at home in Mãe Maria from the break of dawn until the onset of dusk
Try the Francesinha com Camarões - a baked sandwich filled with beef, ham, sausage, prawns, melted cheese and topped with an egg and an utterly delicious (and unique) sauce
Pull up a pugh at the bar, sip on a Sagres and enjoy live music from 8pm every Saturday

Top Wriggler reviews

100% verified
10/02/2018

Nice place. A bit too cold to get comfortable. Lovely calamares.

11/12/2017

The food was nice, definitely worth the money with a Wriggle discount. Felt very authentic too, so it was something a little bit different.

06/11/2017

Atmosphere was very quiet - but food was very good!

06/11/2017

Looks like a nice menu. They also had interesting looking cakes


Location