Mum and daughter hope to turn Sidmouth café into restaurant

Olivia and Louise Brown have taken over Graze

Olivia and Louise Brown have taken over Graze - Credit: Archant

A mother-and-daughter duo with a ‘great relationship’ have taken over a Sidmouth café - and running it will be a very much a family affair.

Louise and Olivia Brown reopened Graze yesterday with a new menu boasting items they think the town has been missing and they are eager for residents to say what they want.

They have the support of Olivia’s two sisters and her father Paul has joined them as a partner in the business, which they hope to develop into a restaurant.

Olivia, who is 21 and has worked in hospitality for seven years, said: “This has been my ambition for two years. I did the first year of an accounting degree, but I wanted to do something practical.

“Our aim is to turn it into an evening restaurant, if there’s demand.

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“I think my mum and I will work together brilliantly – we have a very good relationship.

“We have the same ideas about the menu, design and service.”

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Their new menu includes brunch items like smashed avocado on toast, gluten-free options, cocktails and afternoon tea with optional prosecco. They plan to renovate the High Street café in the autumn.

With space for 65 covers, Louise said the café is huge, and its potential is even bigger.

“We want as much feedback as possible,” she said. “We want Graze to be somewhere Sidmouth really wants. Some people have said they want an Italian restaurant but we’re open to suggestions.”

“I never thought we’d be working together. Eventually Liv can take over entirely and I can retire.”

Louise brought her family to Sidmouth 20 years ago and has since run a nursery and taught English as a foreign language – playing a pivotal role in helping a family of Syrian refugees settle in the town.

The duo live within five minutes of the café and intend to always have one of them or Olivia’s sister Sarah front of house to maintain the atmosphere.

Her other sister, Lucy, will be making ‘delicious’ brownies, while Louise’s three grandchildren will help with taste testing.

Graze was previously owned by Sarah and Damon Ralph and Claire and Nick Larby.

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