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Mary Ann Gilchrist

Mary Ann Gilchrist

Having spent several years extensively renovating the Carlton Riverside – a converted nineteenth century inn on the banks of the River Irfon – they finally moved their business to its new venue in 2005, and remained there for over a decade. Mary Ann Gilchrist developed her culinary skills over the years and kept her style contemporary, while still treating beautiful, regional ingredients simply and with respect. A typical Carlton Riverside meal could start with Pea mousse with Carmarthen ham and pea-shallot salad, before moving onto Featherblade of beef slow-braised in Welsh ale with punchnep mash and buttered cabbage. To finish, perhaps a Chilled caramelised rice pudding with whinberry compote, and, if you’re feeling particularly gluttonous, a selection of Welsh cheeses with homemade biscuits.

Lamb is a speciality of Mary Ann Gilchrist and all her meat was sourced from Welsh farms. The restaurant’s fish and shellfish came from Pwhelli and is caught using sustainable methods.

Mary Ann Gilchrist appeared in the 2013 and 2014 series of Great British Menu, coming second in both years’ Wales heats. One of the biggest characters to ever grace the programme’s kitchen, she has likened her on-screen personality to that of pioneering 1950s television chef Fanny Craddock, whose bold, theatrical and combative style saw her become the foremost celebrity chef of her day.

Mary-Ann has since retired and passed over the kitchen at Carlton Riverside to head chef Luke Roberts.