Melanie and Ciaran Breslin, owners of Primrose restaurant in Derry, are preparing to celebrate their first year in business since transforming a vacant 6,000 sq ft building on Strand Road into a continental-style eatery.
The couple said they have been overwhelmed by the response so far from locals and visitors alike: “We put our heart and soul into here and th support we receive from our customers makes all the hard work worthwhile”.
Almost a year on from the business expansion, adding tapas and cocktails to the popular Primrose evening menu has further boosted the night time economy in Northern Ireland’s ‘Destination Delicious’. The restaurant boasts an on-site bakery, as well as having two mixologists as part of the team. The couple work round the clock, between the Strand Road premises and Primrose Café on the Quay overlooking the city’s riverfront.
The menu includes tapas classics such as patatas bravas, smoked cod croquette, crab and courgette arancini, and thinly sliced rib eye steak with chimichurri.
Local inspiration features strongly amongst the dishes on offer with Donegal prawns, Greencastle haddock, Grants pork belly and the signature Primrose burger using prime beef from the Breslin family butchers.
Just nine weeks after opening their new premises, Primrose on the Strand was one of only two Derry eateries listed among Ireland’s 100 Best Restaurants in the Sunday Times by food writers, John and Sally McKenna of McKenna's Guides. They described Ciaran and Melanie Breslin as “major players in the fast-developing Derry food scene over the past five years,” adding that both of the city’s Primrose outlets have become “bywords for beautiful cooking”.
Primrose has since picked up a number of awards including Best Newcomer in Co. Derry at the Ulster regional final of the Irish Restaurant Awards 2018.
Ciaran and Melanie added: “Primrose has always been our passion since its first beginnings six years ago. We’ve put in long hours to get where we are today and our focus continues to be on making Primrose a destination for food lovers from throughout Ireland and all those visiting the city from other parts of the world.”