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Revealed: Northern Ireland's top restaurants according to the Waitrose Good Food Guide

By David Young

A Northern Ireland restaurant in its first year of trading has been named UK winner of the Good Food Guide Local Restaurant of the Year Awards.

Wine & Brine, located in the picturesque small market town of Moira and overseen by husband and wife team Chris and Davina McGowan, has only been open since December.

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Chris previously worked alongside top chefs, such as Richard Corrigan and Gary Rhodes, in London, before returning back home to Northern Ireland after two decades away.

Waitrose Good Food Guide editor Elizabeth Carter said Wine & Brine was a worthy winner.

"A role-model of its kind, Chris McGowan's relaxed restaurant has a big heart, friendly, laid-back staff and generous cooking of fresh, seasonal and local ingredients at ridiculously reasonable prices," she added.

"A hive of endeavour, it is no wonder that Wine & Brine has a huge and very vocal fan base. Every town should have a restaurant of this standard."

Davina McGowan said: "To say we are delighted by this accolade is a great understatement.

"We are such a young business, it makes it all the more profound for us. We are trying to make good food accessible to everyone, using local suppliers. We only have one draught beer, and that's from a brewery a few miles away. Our butcher is within a five-mile radius, as are most of our suppliers."

Belfast Telegraph food writer Joris Minne said the accolade was "very well deserved".

"I'm delighted for Chris and Davina, who offer Michelin standards at affordable prices," he added. "I wish he would open three more restaurants."

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