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Friday, 29 April 2016

Enter Your Pub in the 2016 Irish Pubs Global Awards

The 2016 Irish Pubs Global Awards are now Open for entry. There are two new categories to the lineup, Bartender of the Year and Bar Manager of the Year. Following record entry levels last year and a sold out awards night with over 250 attending, this year's Awards should be hotly contested.

The Categories for Entry this year are:

International Irish Pub Food Award – Food Experience of the Year
Awarded to the Irish Pub, who in the opinion of the judges, offers the best overall food for which Ireland is known and recognised, that reflects a sense of place and context, espouses Irish values and is presented in a confident and contemporary way.

Authenticity Award
Awarded to the Irish Pub who in the opinion of the judges, is the most authentic Irish Pub experience outside of Ireland, including design, atmosphere, staff and offering overall.

Best Native Irish Pub Award
Awarded to the inspirational pub which in the opinion of the judges has reached the benchmark standard which others should aim to achieve, within Ireland.
Marketing Campaign of the Year – Irish Pub
Awarded to the Irish Pub, who in the opinion of the judges, created the most effective marketing campaign such as a new opening, re-launch, promotion or event.
Innovation Award - Beverage
Awarded to the supplier, who in the opinion of the judges, provides the most innovative, product or service that demonstrates real value, benefit and purpose.
Innovation Award - Technology
Awarded to the supplier, who in the opinion of the judges, provides the most innovative, product or service that demonstrates real value, benefit and purpose.
Irish Pub Manager of the Year
Awarded to the Irish Pub General Manager, who in the opinion of the judges, demonstrates the best understanding and level of service expected of a leading General Manager amongst his/her peers.
Irish Pub of the Year
Awarded to the Irish Bar, who in the opinion of the judges, epitomises the very essence of what makes an Irish Pub the best in its class, from design to customer service.

Supplier of the Year
Awarded to the supplier who, in the opinion of the judges, has excelled in the services they supply to Irish Pubs.

Bar Manager of the Year
New for 2016. Awarded to the Bar Manager, who in the opinion of the judges, best demonstrates the understanding and level of service expected of a leading bar manager amongst his/her peers.
Irish Bartender of the Year
New for 2016. Awarded to the bartender, who in the opinion of the judges, best demonstrates the understanding and level of service expected of a leading bartender amongst his/her peers.

Lifetime Achievement Award
Awarded to the person, who in the opinion of the judges, has made the most outstanding contribution to the drinks sector.

To Enter your Irish Pub go to

The Village Tavern in Mountcharles is a classic Irish Pub

The overall event runs from 26th to 28th September and will also include Master Classes, an Irish Pub Auction, Guided Pub Tour, Chef’s Demo, Irish Whiskey Auction, Golf Outing, Mixology Challenge, Tastings, Brewing Equipment as well as the Gala Awards Dinner.

The 2016 Irish Pubs Global Awards Night on 27th September at Citywest Hotel & Event Centre, in Dublin and is a valuable industry networking opportunity. To book your seat or host your own table for your invited guests, industry partners, colleagues and friends, contact Averyl Quinn or telephone +353 (0)1 2947710.


Thursday, 28 April 2016

Food One The Edge 2016 launched last Monday

Last Monday night in Amass Restaurant, in Copenhagen, Denmark the Irish international food symposium, Food On The Edge, which takes place in Galway on October 23rd and 24th was officially launched. The evening saw three of the most well known nordic chefs collaborate with JP McMahon, founder of Food On The Edge, to produce a range of snacks which were served to guests.

The collaborating chefs were Christian Puglisi of Relae restaurant in Copenhagen (listed number 45 in World’s Top 100 Restaurants) and Matt Orlando of Amass Restaurant in Copenhagen (listed number 66 in World’s Top 100 Restaurants) and Michelin Star chef and restaurant owner Sasu Laukkonen of Chef & Sommelier in Helsinki, Finland; all of whom will travel to Ireland in October to participate in Food On The Edge 2016. 

Christian Puglisi, JP McMahon, Matt Orlando and Sasu Laukkonen.

Other world renowned chefs present included Diego Munoz from Lima, Peru ( previously listed number 14 in World’s Top 100), Chef Munoz delivered a short presentation on fishing in Peru as part of the evening’s proceedings. Other notable chefs present included Niklas Ekstedt of Ekstedt restaurant in Stockholm and Syrco Bakker of Pure C Restaurant in The Netherlands. Travelling from Ireland of the event was Ross Lewis, Chapter One Restaurant in Dublin - Ross delivered also a speech at the event where he said “Food On The Edge is the lightening rod for the food movement in Ireland”. 

Special guests included Cliona Manahan - Irish Ambassador to Denmark; John Mulcahy - Head of Food Tourism, Failte Ireland.

JP McMahon says that the inaugural Food on the Edge 2015 surpassed all his expectations, and “it was an incredible almost surreal experience. Each chef was given the opportunity to deliver topics that centred on the future of food ­ they discussed their ideas, shared their fears, their dreams, their dreads and regrets from their careers. There was a core theme, however, which resonated strongly across the two days and that was ‘responsibility’. Responsibility in the way we source food, waste food, fish for food and supply food was passionately debated”. 

JP says that the speakers are chosen for their passion, drive, and their ability to inspire chefs around the world. “They are leaders that we look up to for inspiration. It is important for us to create a sense of continuity. Rather than only invite new chefs to discuss the future of food, each year a number of past speakers will return to reflect on their previous presentation and assess the change or development of their thought and practice”. 

The exciting line­up continues to build with more speakers included this year and the addition of new Expert Panel Discussions. 

Speakers already confirmed for this year’s Food on the Edge include Daniel Burns,​ currently “one of the hottest chefs in New York city” who owns Luksus; Shaun Hill, who owns the renowned Michelin Star restaurant The Walnut Treein Wales and Tim Hollingsworth who recently opened the three star Michelin restaurant Otiumin Los Angeles. 

The exciting and prolific ​Massimo Bottura​, the ​Italian restaurateur and chef patron of Osteria Francescana​, a three­ Michelin ­star restaurant based in Modena, Italy will also be speaking and giving a presentation on the future of food.
See the up-to-date List of confirmed Food On The Edge speakers for 2016 here at with many more still to be confirmed.

The two day event will take place again in Galway City, ticket price includes lunch on both days, entry to Monday night party where audience gets to meet and mingle with speakers. Early bird tickets are available until July priced at €350 (normal price €400) are Selling out fast at

Get your tickets now before they're all gone!


Friday, 8 April 2016

Real Food, Real Easy - Val's Kitchen is a wonderful Recipe Book

There are a lot of cookbooks on the Irish market today and there are a lot of people buying them! However many of these books of recipes sit on an overstuffed bookshelf filled with other cookbooks that rarely get read and even less often, get used! But now and then a cookbook comes along that has real homely recipes in it, that know that your family will eat, learn from and carry with them into their own future.

Valerie O'Connor is a food writer, cook, teacher, organic horticulturist and photographer, from Limerick and she has recently brought out such a book based on her food blog, Val's Kitchen which celebrates it's 10th Birthday this year and this cookbook really ticks all the right boxes!

Val's Kitchen - Real Food, Real Easy takes the reader through a series of tasty food journeys based on the pleasures of real life modern eating, but it's unpretentious and true to the reasoning of an old fashioned kitchen. From the first chapter to the last, Val talks you through her own kitchen pantry and cupboards and explains the logic of why she uses particular ingredients. This book is so readable that it's almost like she's sitting chatting with you at your own kitchen table - and she's great company!

How to make perfect Omelets

Val's Kitchen dances through the average day starting off with how to make your own granola, how to cook porridge, pancakes, egg dishes and smoothies. There are some excellent brunch and salad recipes, real soups and winning dinners. Sprinkled through the book are some delicious dishes and gems like the baked butternut squash stuffed with cheese, braised shin of beef and lots of recipes of food for parties and picnics.

Val O'Connor is an excellent baker (her book Bread on the Table is also a must-have) and Val's Kitchen contains a special baked treats chapter. This includes recipes for homemade bagels, brownies and breads,  recipes for apples and apple cakes and a superb gluten-free yogurt cake!

Val's delicious Pork and Bean Chowder

The In the Pantry section is, in itself, worth buying the book for! Val shows you how to make your own elderflower champagne, homemade cordials, simple cream cheeses and natural yogurts. She also walks you through basic fermented veggies and kimchi. The final section of the book is dedicated to Growing your Own Food and brings you, simply, through growing the essentials for any kitchen garden.

This is an absolutely perfect cookbook or present for today's college-going teenager who is away from home for the first time and doesn't want to live on spaghetti bolognaise for the next three years! It's all here.

Val's Kitchen - Real Food, Real Easy is published by O'Brien Press and is available in all good bookshops and on the publisher's website priced at €19.99 here at


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The Irish Food Guide Blog includes news, foodie chat, recipes, award results, links and other general information on the Food & Tourism Industry in Ireland.

It is written & curated by Zack Gallagher, Donegal Town, Co Donegal, Ireland.

“My Blog is a slice of the Irish Food ‘Network’. I’m a Chef with over 27 years experience and also have a background in media. I’m passionate about Irish Food Tourism and I believe that a rising tide really can lift all boats!”

Supporting Irish Food created by passionate producers and encouraging the Irish food & hospitality industry to use modern social media methods to increase their business.

Zack is building an all-Ireland Food Tourism network to assist Tour Operators bringing guests into Ireland to connect easily with artisan Irish food producers, so as they can experience the provenance and personality behind our Irish food Visit

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