The Optimist Bar & Kitchen is based in the uber-cool area of Uplands in Swansea. It’s part of a new line-up of progressive venues that are changing the demographic of the area bringing hipsters and Dylanites together over an organic, shade grown, micro roasted, flat white coffee – with almond milk of course.
I had yet to sample The Optimist. Mainly because I hadn’t heard much about it and wasn’t sure if the menu would appeal. Last month they hired a new Head Chef, Calum Pickard, and suddenly their Instagram was showcasing tantalising photos of Lavender & Blueberry Granola Bowls and Smashed Avocado on Toast. According to their Facebook page, “Calum’s idea is vibrant and colourful food, cooked well using fresh ingredients from local suppliers. He has designed our new menu using inspiration from his time in London – It’s fresh, on trend and full of flavour.”
When my daughter suggested brunch at The Optimist for her birthday it felt like fate had intervened. We visited on a sunny Wednesday morning and managed to grab a table in amongst the chatter and laughter of a busy eatery. We both opted for the Optimist Vegan Breakfast £8 (handily served all day) with a side of sweet potato fries. And two freshly concocted juices, the names of which now elude me, promising boosting and detoxing and smug healthiness.
The menu is excellent. A huge variety of dishes that will please a bundle of diet requirements. Our vegan breakfasts were luscious – a hearty portion of baked beans (in a mini jar), smashed avocado, vegan sausage, scrambled tofu, sourdough, roasted vine tomatoes, field mushrooms and sautéed potatoes (phew). My daughter raved about her sweet potato fries.
There’s also bacon sandwiches, all day breakfasts, things on toast, eggs on toast, French toast, pancakes, tacos, tortilla pizzas – the menu is extensive. And it’s also an established bar (I’ll be back minus the child to try that bit).
Service was pleasant and we didn’t wait very long considering how busy it was. In fact, we were so impressed we returned on Sunday but couldn’t find a free table. We are obviously not the only fans.
The Optimist Bar & Kitchen, 57-59 Uplands Crescent, Uplands, Swansea SA2 0EZ