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Food Review

The Esplanade, Barry Island.

Food **** Atmosphere ****

This isn’t technically a food review, more a review of a much-loved café-cum-meeting place. It has been and still is famous because of Gavin & Stacey, but Marco’s is more widely loved for its friendly, chatty staff and legendary coffees and bacon sarnies.

Marco has developed an institution, not just a café. The dog walkers (of which there are zillions), families and day trippers stop here in their droves, to enjoyed perfect lattes, homemade cakes and – to quote a fan on Tripadvisor – the best coffee ever, so there! Weekends, come gale force winds and occasional sunny days, are rammed with devotees: you cannot replace homegrown, owner-managed cafes with corporate, sanitised chains. Everyone knows each other at Marco’s and there is always a dog show of sorts or some bike race, charity event or volleyball tournament happening along the prom.

Last month, Whitmore Bay held witness to the annual Schnauzerfest, with 300 of them strutting around showing their stuff; Marco’s was the socialising, bum-sniffing epicentre. The café has the occasional live music session of sorts, a keyboardist and singer out in the open with the sea and funfair as a back drop. What’s not to love – especially now, as the newly erected (and moved a few meters) Barry Eye is a spinning disc of delight with its epically sparkly new lightshow.

Take your dog or kids (preferably the dog) along to Marco’s Café and enjoy the fresh baguettes, cakes and coffee. The banter is thrown in for free. Doggy treats are, of course, also available!


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