<div style="display:inline;"> <img height="1" width="1" style="border-style:none;" alt="" src="//googleads.g.doubleclick.net/pagead/viewthroughconversion/1028731116/?value=0&amp;guid=ON&amp;script=0">
6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Cheshire Life today click here

Restaurant review - The Marram Grass Café, Newborough, Anglesey

PUBLISHED: 00:00 04 September 2015 | UPDATED: 16:28 10 January 2018

Goat's cheese starter at Marram Grass

Goats' cheese starter at the Marram Grass


In a cabin close to a beautiful Anglesey beach nestles, Marram Grass, an eaterie which is exciting both locals and tourists, writes Louise Allen-Taylor

The entrance to Marram Grass The entrance to Marram Grass

It would take a very hard heart indeed not to love the story of The Marram Grass Café. Two Liverpudlian brothers - one-time surveyor Liam Barrie and chef Ellis - go to help out at their parents’ caravan park on Anglesey. 

Taking charge of a café there serving ready-made lasagnes and burgers, they gradually improve the offer, make a virtue of using local produce and expand the restaurant (housed in what they, even now, refer to on their website as a ‘shed’) creating a haphazard ambience of hipsterish charm. 

Then, despite being in the middle of nowhere, they somehow attract rave reviews from national newspapers, a sheaf of awards and - cheeky, telegenic chappies that they are - lots of TV coverage.

There’s Ellis cooking mussels on a Llanddwyn Island beach for Julia Bradbury as she walks the Anglesey coastal path for the BBC. And there he is again cheffing his way through to the finals of BBC Great British Menu.

We first visited The Marram Grass over two years ago when the word-of-mouth buzz was already well underway and were bowled over, particularly by the Menai mussels and a zingy main of Conwy Bay plaice with tiny capers. 

A return visit took a bit more planning, such is The Marram Grass’s popularity (the ‘café’ part of the name has been ditched along the way). It is still an appealingly home-made place: a low shack whose furnishings and decor include exposed brickwork, recycled timber and corrugated metal. We sit on what look like church pews at a table fashioned from a slab of wood which once had some industrial use, but it’s all very comfortable and cosy. 

An amuse-bouche arrives in the shape of a shot glass of green tomato gazpacho: simple, delicious. To start, I choose the Anglesey goats’ cheese mousse (£8.50), its creamy, musty flavours complemented by candied nuts, puffed wild rice and slivers of apple.

My companion chooses the soup starter (£6.50) - a viscous mixture of squash and pumpkin with warming overtones of ginger and chilli. On the side are chunks of bread with whipped butter, infused with dill and cucumber - a real autumn warmer.

Menai Mussells at The Marram Grass Menai Mussells at The Marram Grass

On to mains, it has to be Menai mussels (£14.95) for my husband. Instead of the familiar moules marinières recipe, these mussels come in a sweet creamy broth with sage and apple, chunks of softened apple sitting amid the shellfish. 

I enjoyed another local product: Conwy Valley lamb. The lamb loin is accompanied by delicious slow-cooked shoulder and heritage carrots. It is a beautifully put-together course, but, here’s the rub, it is also priced at £27.

And this is the slight reservation one must now express about The Marram Grass. On the menu handed to us, there are five mains, of which only two, mussels included, are below £20. Three desserts range from £8.50 to £10.50. We choose ‘Lemon’ - a labour-intensive combination of sponge, yoghurt, gels and honey. It’s a typically accomplished dish and delightful, but these are getting on for fine dining prices in a restaurant whose great appeal has always been its informality. There will be plenty who’ll happily pay these prices, but some of us will have to think twice.

The Marram Grass, White Lodge, Penlon, Newborough, Anglesey LL61 6RS, 01248 440077, www.themarramgrass.com


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Cheshire visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Cheshire staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Cheshire account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Food & Drink

Two mavericks of the food and drink world collided with beautiful results at The Art School, Liverpool, writes Rebekka O’grady.

Read more
Friday, January 12, 2018

Sheridan’s The Rivals was the first ever production at Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre. The 1976 staging starred Tom Courtenay and Patricia Routledge and heralded a golden era of exceptional theatre in Manchester.

Read more
Manchester Restaurants
Thursday, January 11, 2018

Digest this mini review in 60 seconds

Read more
Cheshire Restaurants Pubs and Bars
Friday, January 5, 2018

Putting the spotlight on retailers whose business is an important part of community life

Read more
Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Just back from the jungle, Jennie McAlpine on missing her family and serving tea fit for a queen. Mairead Mahon reports

Read more
Afternoon Tea Manchester
Friday, December 29, 2017

Gin tasting is increasing in popularity across the country, we round up some of the best events across Cheshire. Some of these events sell out fairly quickly, but the organisers do often host multiple events throughout the year.

Read more
Friday, December 29, 2017

Our guide to some of the best food events in the county throughout 2018

Read more
Things to do in Cheshire Summer in Cheshire
Thursday, December 28, 2017

PAmpering and Prosecco were on the menu at the fabulous five star Lowry Hotel - the occasion? An exclusive Cheshire Life luncheon with a difference.

Read more
Cheshire Life Luncheon
Great British Holidays advert link

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Cheshire Life Application Link

Local Business Directory

Cheshire's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area

Property Search