Barmouth WI members welcomed Jose Fernandes from a Bistro Burco in Barmouth to their Wednesday, 22 February afternoon meeting at the Dragon Theatre.

Jose delighted all with a demonstration of five different sauces. They were delicious said Ros Grant, the WI press officer.

Jose not only demonstrated cooking but charmed everyone with his story of how on holiday with his wife Ola and son Stach while visiting friends in Barmouth five years ago, they saw a restaurant for sale and decided to buy it and make a life in Wales.

He said he and Ola agreed not to open a typical Spanish restaurant but to focus on using fresh produce and recipes from Wales, cooking for Welsh locals all year round and give the food a slight Spanish twist. Jose comes from Bayona in Galecia, a Spanish area with strong Celtic links so they feel very much at home in Barmouth.

Jose learned to cook from his grandmother Clara, when in the early 1970s, under Franco’s rule a time when there was much poverty in Spain, he remembers going to the sea shore to collect clams and mussels, from the rocks to take home for supper, as the eldest cousin he became assistant chef to his grandmother, learning how to introduce local herbs and make the most of flavours.

Jose said he and his family love Barmouth, they love working in their small intimate Bistro and have no plans to expand but are happy with the life they have built here. The community is thankful for that, Jose!

The next Barmouth event is to celebrate International Women’s Day, focusing on Stopping Violence Against Women asking nationally for One Million Women Rise!

Join WI women to march on Saturday, 4 March at 1pm, meeting outside the Dragon Theatre; wear red and prepare to go down the High Street to the harbour and return.

Every WI member has a voice and 43 resolutions from various areas were put forward on important matters to focus on for 2023.

This year the winning resolution is Clean rivers for people and wildlife. The WI members believe that water quality in our UK rivers is shameful. The WI urges members to do all they can to support and promote ways to clean up our waterways and prevent sewage from entering our oceans.

This campaign will be an opportunity to take supported, local action to aim for clean beaches and water courses to prevent disease and encourage healthy wildlife.

Next month they will enjoy an afternoon village tea at Llanelltyd Village Hall on Thursday, 2 March at 2pm. The speaker will be Stella Shaw on Patagonia, Argentina.

Members will be dining out at Barmouth Grill on 10 March 6.30pm.

There is a taster evening at Llanelltyd Village Hall Thursday 20 March at 7pm where members can take food to try and share.

On Wednesday, 22 March, at 2pm at the Dragon Theatre, Dinah Pickard will be giving a floral demonstration. The following meeting in April will be a talk on our local beach coast guardians.

For more information on the WI, go to or contact Ros Grant on 07773 470384.

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