This Newport pub is named after the famous local heroine, the Pirate Queen, Grace O’Malley. It has been in the McManamon family for more than a century.
In 2005, Harry and Liz McManamon took it over and extended and renovated the premise. They also paid particular attention to the food offering. Gastro pubs were becoming more and more popular and they knew that serving only toasted sandwiches had to change.
The menus these days are namechecked with local producers such as Kelly’s Butchers, Keem Bay Fish Products from Gerry Hasset and shellfish from Croagh Patrick Seafoods.
“Our Head Chef is Aiden Cullinane. He is a Mayo man, who thrives on using great local produce. We are lucky to have such fantastic local seafood and superb meat from our local butchers.
“Our seafood chowder is eternally popular, and our fish dishes sell exceptionally well. Our scallops on Kelly's Black Pudding, black and white pudding salad, local crabmeat and smoked salmon are our most popular starters. Local lamb shanks are one of our best sellers, and any fresh fish sells well as a main course.”
Liz credits the Gourmet Greenway initiative with helping them to reach suppliers who otherwise might not have been on their radar.
“Newport is a natural stopping point on the Greenway and cycling has become so popular. It has been a fantastic boost to our business. It has put us in touch with suppliers we weren't aware of, and broadened our horizons. For the past two years we have run a seafood and craft beer weekend over the May Bank Holiday in association with the Gourmet Greenway,” says Liz.
They also do a takeaway menu for cyclists, as well as offering coffee and cakes for those short pitstops. Customers can call ahead and order lunch so they save time.
“What sets us apart from others is that we are family owned and run. Our staff stays with us, so we always have a good team on the floor and in the kitchen. The atmosphere is traditional pub with a modern vibe. We feature fabulous artists on our walls.
“In the summer, sitting outside, you can look out at Clew Bay and the beautiful town of Newport and watch the world go by. You can snuggle by the cosy open fire in winter. It is the best place to be - even Prince Albert of Monaco thinks so!”