National Geographic Traveller (UK)
PGI WELSH BEEF & MONTGOMERY VINEYARDS RONDO
Cattle farming plays a central role in Welsh heritage and culture, so it seems only fitting that Welsh beef was the first product in Wales to achieve PGI status in recognition of its unique character and tradition.
Primarily raised on the country’s natural resources (grass and rainwater), Welsh cattle form a key part of Wales’s agricultural landscape. Historically, traditional cattle breeds here were chiefly Welsh Black and Hereford; today’s Welsh beef is derived from these as well as other recognised non-native breeds. The cattle are all born, reared and slaughtered in Wales, all the while protected by high welfare standards, and the Welsh beef supply chain is completely transparent, meaning Welsh beef can be traced from the supermarket shelf or butcher’s shop all the way back to the field it came from.
Thanks to this combination of Wales’s distinct landscape and climate, its traditional cattle breeds and its high standards in farming practices, PGI Welsh beef is known around the world for its excellent quality and depth of flavour.
This means, of course, that you’ll want to pair it with a decent-quality wine.
The family-run Montgomery Vineyard is located in Powys and, at 900ft, its southfacing vineyard is one of the highest in the UK. Since the first vines were planted back in 2012, Montgomery Vineyard has picked up numerous accolades at the Welsh Wine Awards, including for its 2018 rondo. A hybrid grape widely cultivated throughout the UK, rondo produces complex, full-bodied red wines that make an excellent match for hearty beef dishes. Montgomery’s 2018 vintage is rich and juicy, slightly smoky and spicy and packed with cherries and blackberries. A glass of it would naturally work well with a good steak, but if you’re pairing Welsh wine with Welsh beef, you might as well go the whole hog (or rather, cow) and enjoy it with a traditional Welsh cawl instead.
WHERE TO START: PGI Welsh Black and Hereford beef can be widely ordered online, including from the award-winning Prendergast Butchers in Pembrokeshire. Meanwhile, Montgomery Vineyard’s Rondo 2018 is available in online shops such as Noble Grape. prendergastbutchers.co.uk montgomeryvineyard.co.uk noblegrape.co.uk