A Taste of West Cork Food Festival launches delectable programme

FREE PIC - NO REPRO FEE - July 13, 2017
Pictured at the launch of ‘A Taste of West Cork Food Festival’ 2017, at Kalbos@Uillinn, Skibbereen were: from left: Sharon Corcoran, Director of Touriism, Cork County Council; Cllr. Declan Hurley, Mayor of the County of Cork and Helen Collins, chairperson "A Taste of West Cork Food Festival".  The group are pictured in front of one of the William Crozierr landscapes which is on display in the West Cork Arts Centre.
Expanding its reach even further this year, the Festival (8th-17th September), will now host over 230 culinary and adventure events across 36 towns and villages and 8 islands. The Festival will welcome visitors to a foodie’s paradise, with several national and international chefs preparing culinary-themed feasts in local restaurants, food tastings al fresco, foraging walks, open-air markets, seminars, cook-offs, masterclasses and intimate evenings with local artisan food producers imparting their culinary wisdom. For more see www.atasteofwestcork.com or follow the conversation on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
Pic: Brian Lougheed Photography

Posted on: 3rd August, 2017

Category: Headlines

Contributor: West Cork People

Variety is the spice of life, and it is a spice that this year’s A Taste of West Cork Food Festival has in abundance! With 33 guest chefs, and a plethora of events for families, friends, couples, and food-lovers alike, it’s no wonder celebrity Chef Derry Clarke, (of Michelin Star L’Ecrivan restaurant fame) is eager to return.

The 10-day Festival takes place this year from September 8 to 17, with over 230 culinary and adventure events across the region’s 36 towns and villages and eight islands.

Sizing up to be the most cultured and cosmopolitan food Festival to date, visitors are welcomed to a foodie’s paradise, with an array of both national and international chefs preparing culinary-themed feasts in local restaurants, food tastings al fresco, foraging walks, open-air markets, seminars, cook-offs, masterclasses and intimate evenings with local artisan food producers imparting their culinary wisdom.

Guest chefs include TV presenters Neven McGuire, Oliver McCabe and Derry Clarke, Danni Barry (Michelin Star chef and RAI Best Chef in Ireland 2016), Kevin Ahern (winner of Best Chef in Munster Awards 2014 at age 24), Rob Krawczyk (winner of the National Restaurants Association of Ireland Best Chef in Leinster 2016), Bryan McCarthy (Head Chef at Greenes – Food and Wine Munster Best Restaurant Award 2016), Decky Walsh (Chef and Pitmaster specialist at Holy Smoke Cork), Ali Honour, Matt Williamson, Chris Hedges, Paul Cartwright, Journalist Joe MacNamee, Gautham Iyer, and Brian Donnelly (Executive chef and co-founder of Belfast based RAMEN).

New events with a modern twist include a gin and tapas night, island whiskey tasting, wine and craft beer pairing dinners, and ‘a night in the museum’ (Michael Collins Museum Clonakilty).  While famous cookbook author, food and TV host Trish Deseine will be joined by Virginie Garnier (renowned French food and lifestyle photographer who has had over 20 cookbooks published by Hachette, Ducasse and Mango) to run a unique two-day Cookbook Workshop.

Events set to ‘spice-up’ the Festival line-up even more include ‘Eat, Drink, Sleep at The Castle’, a six course tasting menu, overnight and breakfast at The Castle, Castletownsend; a ‘Milking It’ demonstration and milking competitions at Bandon Farmers Market and Urru Culinary Store, Bandon;  and a ‘Step Back in Time to the Roaring Twenties’ night at the Eccles Hotel, Glengarriff – at which two guest chefs will be preparing the 20’s inspired menu while guests arrive styled to suit!

Clonakilty native and CEO of Bórd Bia, Tara McCarthy, who officially launched the Festival last week said; “It is so wonderful to see so many talented food producers, chefs and entrepreneurs from across West Cork, Ireland and the globe, coming together to celebrate Irish food, and particularly West Cork food at its best.

West Cork and food need little introduction, just as West Cork and innovation need very little introduction.  When you come in to Sklibbereen, you realise it’s the first gigabyte town in Ireland, and when you look at West Cork from a food perspective it’s very similar.  For example, one hundred per cent of Clonakilty’s farmers are the first in the dairy sector where 100 per cent of them have signed up to Bord Bia’s Origin Green programme, which is the world’s first sustainability programme. Another example is that, in Bord Bia we work with 1,000 companies where 190 of them are from West Cork so it just shows you the depth of the innovation that comes from here. In short, it is always with pride that we are associated with events, innovation, commitment and ambition that comes from West Cork.

I feel honoured to have been asked to launch such a prestigious and exciting Festival and very much look forward to September’s jam-packed series of events.”

As part of the Festival, the West Cork Creates exhibition will open at the O’Driscoll building in Skibbereen at 1pm on Saturday, August 5 and run throughout the festival. This creative display will be launched in Cork airport on Thursday, August 3 showcasing what the exhibition will have to offer in West Cork.

Conferences, forums and talks are an integral component to A Taste of West Cork Food Festival, with this year being no exception by hosting ‘The Future of Fairs and Markets in Ireland’ conference on Friday, September 8 in West Cork Hotel, Ilen Street, Skibbereen. Presented by Madeline McKeever, in conjunction with the Skibbereen Farmers market Committee, speakers will include Darina Allen, Ciaran Casey, Gerald Kelleher, and more.

Back to motivate and inspire, the ever changing and ever relevant ‘New Directions for West Cork’ forum, chaired by Lord David Puttnam takes place on September 16 at Baltimore Sailing Club. The forum takes a local focus this year and examines new developments for the West Cork area.

Also returning is last year’s hugely popular ‘Fiction Fads and Phonies’ conference – held by Paul Treyvaud of Treyvaud’s Restaurant, Marie Power of The Sea Gardener, and Niamh O’Connor of Cork Nutrition. And for health conscious foodies, nutritionist Majella O’Neill will discuss key dietary and life-style changes that can have a fundamental impact on health and vitality at the Our Food; Our Future Food is Medicine, Medicine is Food talk.

A Taste of West Cork Food Festival Chair, Helen Collins told us “I am so proud of the unity that West Cork has displayed in coming together to promote this unique region of which we love and want to share. Year in, year out, it never ceases to amaze me that there is such a plethora of talent and support around the Festival. Our fabulous supporters and ambassadors  will take A Taste of West Cork Food Festival to yet another level by putting their own unique stamp on the best of West Cork’s produce.

We have three cornerstones to our annual Festival and they include; the unity of West Cork from Bandon to Beara across thirty six towns and villages and eight islands; the magic ingredients of West Cork from food producers, restaurants, stately homes, islands and gardens, and of course; our Guest Chef Programme which creates excitement for the customer, the venue and the local food producers, making these visiting chefs natural ambassadors for our great produce.

I look forward to a busy September ahead and I hope that the visitors to this year’s Festival will enjoy all it has to offer – especially the food glorious food!”    

The Festival is supported by Cork County Council, Fáilte Ireland, Fields of Skibbereen, Bord Bia, Sean and Rose O’Driscoll and many other supporting sponsors and patrons from the region and elsewhere.

To book accommodation/events, to see the full A Taste of West Cork Food Festival programme online, or to buy a recently launched West Cork Artisan Food Guide featuring the best that West Cork has to offer, see www.atasteofwestcork.com.

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Strict visitor restrictions have been put in place with immediate effect at Bantry General Hospital due to the number of patients who have presented with flu like symptoms.

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What makes Christmas special? Children and adults we support, our incredible staff, families and supporters - these are the people who make our organisation so special every single day, but especially at Christmas! Meet some of them here... Thank you to the wonderful team at AV3 Media who kindly produced this video for us as a Christmas gift! To make a Christmas donation today, go to www.cope-foundation.ie/donate. We believe that together we can do great things and with your support we can do so much more! Please SHARE our video so that more people can learn about the amazing things that happen at Cope Foundation! Evening Echo; Irish Examiner; The Southern Star; The Avondhu; Cork Independent; West Cork Times; West Cork People - The Best Free Read in West Cork; Bandon Opinion/The Opinion; Vale Star; East Cork Journal; Cork Chamber - Faces of Cork Business; Cork City FC; Cork Institute of Technology - CIT; University College Cork; Corks RedFM 104-106; The KC Show Corks 96 FM; Cork's 96FM; Cork's Best; C103 Cork; Cork Airport; Cork Opera House: The Everyman; Cork County Council; County Cork; Cork City Council; CorkLike; CCCahoots; Cork On Ice; Glow Cork; CIT Cork School of Music; RTÉ Today; Ciaran Bermingham - Actor; Rob & Marian Heffernan; John Spillane; Ger Wolfe; Eimear O'Brien PR; Jack O Rourke; Theo Dorgan; Mahon Point Shopping Centre; Blackpool Shopping Centre & Retail Park

18th December, 2017  ·  

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Are you alone or do you know someone who will be alone this Christmas? If so, then we here at Casey’s would like to make your day that little bit easier. We are offering a full Christmas dinner on us! Christmas dinners can be collected Christmas Eve from 12:30pm - 8:30pm. Wishing everyone a very happy Christmas from everyone at Casey’s

15th December, 2017  ·  

RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta’s has just announced its Christmas schedule and it features several programmes of interest to listeners in West Cork.

On New Year’s Day at 12.08 pm we’ll hear highlights from the Éigse Dhiarmuidín Festival that took place in West Cork in early December, remembering musician and broadcaster Diarmuid Ó Súilleabháin. An Nollaig ar Oileán Chléire is an archive show presented by Mícheál Ó Sé on Wednesday 27 December at 5.30 pm about Christmas on Cape Clear and on Friday 29 December and 5 January at 7 pm, Peadar Ó Riada will bring us very special editions of his Cuireadh chun Ceoil programme from Múscraí. Keep an ear out!
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15th December, 2017  ·  

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REMINDER: An Garda Siochana are hosting a Retail Crime Prevention Meeting, to be held at 7pm on Wednesday 29th November 2017. This meeting will be held in the Munster Arms Hotel in Bandon. This meeting is one of a series being held across the West Cork Garda Division, in association with Operation Thor, the Garda National Anti-Crime Strategy. The purpose of the meeting is to increase the cooperation between Gardai and the retail sector, ensuring that the current low levels of crime in the locality extends past the busy approaching Christmas season. The meeting will be addressed by the local Crime Prevention Officer, Sergeant Ian O’ Callaghan, who will discuss burglary prevention, shoplifting, fraud, and cybercrime. There will be a particular focus on cash handling and cash exposure of businesses in the run up to the Christmas shopping period. All aspects of commercial crime will be discussed, and we would strongly urge all businesses to make a special effort to attend on the evening.

28th November, 2017  ·  

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