Set in the rolling green of the Cothi Valley, the Dolaucothi Arms is a traditional coaching inn with old bones – a 16th Century Drovers inn behind it’s Georgian facade – and a long history at the heart of this small community. The pub stands at the centre of a cluster of stone cottages in the village of Pumsaint, named for the legend of the five saints stone, and overlooks the confluence of two rivers that snake off through the valley. David Joy and Esther Hubert have run the Dolaucothi since 2013, when they came to the area and opened the pub again after five years empty, making it a vibrant and welcoming spot for locals and visitors. In George Borrow’s 1862 guide ‘Wild Wales’ he describes ‘a comfortable old-fashioned place … a good specimen of an ancient Welsh hostelry’, and much the same could be said today.
Our large beer garden stretches out behind the pub with views over the valley and the rivers Cothi and Twrch to which the pub has fishing rights (see our angling pages). Enjoy a pint at one of the benches on the lawn, explore the garden or take a look (from a safe distance!) at our bee hives – dogs are very welcome but please keep them on a the lead in the interest of our other customers and our pub cat, Lily.
Dave runs things out front, there’s real ale and cider on the pumps from great Welsh breweries like Evan Evans, Wye Valley and Purple Moose; as well as a carefully chosen wine list from European vineyards. Menus are driven by great local produce and everything is made from scratch in our kitchen by Esther and her very small team. Our changing dinner menu evolves as ingredients come into season, working with our fantastic suppliers to make the most of what is good now, and you’ll find plenty of old favourites on our bar menu, too. We pride ourselves on old fashioned hospitality so service is relaxed and informal, and we love a good chat. In 2016 we were thrilled to be included for the first time in the Michelin guide and we also appear in the AA pubs guide, Good Pub guide and Alastair Sawday’s Pubs and Inns guide.
We are at the heart of the National Trust’s Dolaucothi Estate, in fact our grade two listed building and many of the cottages and tenanted farms close by are owned and conserved by the Trust (you can spot them by their red and white paintwork). There are well marked trails across the 2,500 acre estate of wooded hills and sweeping valleys right from our door, and we’re only a fifteen minute stroll from the Dolaucothi Goldmine, so you can earn that pub lunch!
Our annual bank holiday Beer Festival has gone from strength to strength, in it’s fourth year, it’s become much anticipated within the local area – our festival bar hosts award winning beer and cider from all over Wales, there’s live music all day and local food stalls, too. This year’s event will be on Sunday the 28th of August 2016.
Many of the photographs on this website were taken by Ruth Joy, a talented (and lovely) professional wedding & portrait photographer – you can see more of her work on her website www.ruthjoyphotography.com.