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Irish Seafood to Top the Bill at Seafood Rocks 2018 this weekend in Clogherhead, Co. Louth

SEAFOOD ROCKS 2018 is an amazing family festival, being held this weekend (13th, 14th & 15th July) in Clogherhead, Co. Louth, to celebrate a love for the Sea, for Food & for Irish Culture!

Organised Red Fish Events, a company founded by David Bradley and Damien Kierans, the Seafood Rocks 2018 festival is offering a bountiful weekend full of movies, music, kids and family entertainment, competitions, adventure zones, street performers, street art, magicians, drama, dancing and an unrivalled selection of delicious seafood offerings.

One of the aims of the festival is to help promote Clogherhead and the surrounding areas by providing a platform for local produce and talent to be celebrated and this is reflected in everything from the food, the bands, the food producers and all the other entertainment over the weekend.

Family Entertainment will consist of Artisan Seafood Food Market, Workshops, an Open Air Movie, Comedy, Loads of Live Music provided by local musicians, a fully licensed Bar serving Irish Craft Beers and much more! The organisers are especially proud of the huge line-up of local bands from the region who are playing on the various stages over the weekend.

The heartbeat of Clogherhead is it’s fishing industry and this sets a unique seafood theme for the festival. The Clogherhead Fishermen's Co-Op have rallied in behind the festival team with their full support and are providing the base ingredients for all the cooking demonstrations over the weekend!

The Co-op has a core offering of their famous Clogherhead Prawns and also there will also be whitefish dishes including monkfish, cod and hake. Talks, workshops and discussions about sustainable fishing and seafood will be hosted throughout the weekend with some excellent guest contributors.

Kenny Maguire, of Kenny Maguire Demos and Zack Gallagher, of The Irish Food Guide, have been brought on board to help with organising The Clogherhead Fisherman's Co-Op Food Theatre over the weekend and have helped bring together a fabulous line-up of Chefs, Nutritionists, Foodies and Friends who will demonstrate how to best cook up delicious seafood dishes. They include chef Tara Walker (East Coast Cookery School), Jenny Maltese & Tom Coleman (My Nutrition Ireland), Zack Gallagher (The Irish Food Guide), Killian O'Donohue (Boyne Valley Hotel), Graham Clarke (Fifty4 Seafood Bar) along with other local guest chefs!

Tara Walker, Tom Coleman and Jenny Maltese are among the guest Chefs at Seafood Rocks 2018
The Food Theatre is also hosting local and national food producers exhibiting a wide variety of Cheese, Condiments, Jams, Chutneys, Chocolates, Salad Dressings, Artisan Roasted Coffee, Oils, Salts, Cream Liqueurs, Craft Makers and many more!

To help highlight the growing problem of plastics in the sea, Seafood Rocks 2018 is reducing the amount of plastics and non-biodegradable waste on-site. there are composting bins for all food waste, and the piece de resistance is be a giant octopus over 7m high, made entirely from reclaimed plastics and marine waste.

The Giant Octopus at Seafood Rocks 2018 was made from recycled fishing equipment
and plastic reclaimed from the sea by local groups and schools. 

Seafood Rocks 2018, this weekend (13th, 14th & 15th July) in Clogherhead, Co. Louth, is gearing up to be a festival definitely not to be missed! Tickets for Seafood Rocks 2018 can be found here.

For even more info check out their website You can follow Seafood Rocks Festival on your favourite social media: FacebookTwitter and on Instagram and keep an eye on the hashtag #SFR2018

I'm looking forward to the weekend at Seafood Rocks 2018 and I hope to see you there too!

Irish Beef from Dunnes Stores Simply Better range Wins Gold at World Steak Challenge 2018

Ireland was once again recognised as a producer of world class beef at the World Steak Challenge which saw 22 countries participating in these renowned awards. Dunnes Stores Simply Better Irish Angus Steaks took home three major awards at the event in London on the 5th July.

The Gold Winner Simply Better 28 Day Matured Irish Angus Rib Eye Steak

The Simply Better 28 Day Matured Irish Angus Rib Eye Steak picked up the prestigious Gold and Silver awards, with the Simply Better 14 Day Matured Irish Angus Fillet Steak honoured with a Bronze award. This is the fourth consecutive year for Simply Better Steaks to be recognised at the World Steak Challenge.

The World Steak Challenge judging panel was made up of international industry experts including top butchers, food journalists and meat scientists. Each steak was given a score based on its appearance, aroma, colour, marbling and consistency of fat trim, with the Gold winners progressing to the next stage where the meat was judged after being cooked to an exact temperature and specification by expert chefs.

Chef Neven maguire is an Ambassador for the Dunnes Stores Simply Better brand

The Simply Better Collection is one of the most successful food brands in Ireland with over 320 national and international awards since it was established in 2013, which is the most awards for any Irish food brand. Last night’s success brings the number of awards for the Simply Better Irish Angus Beef range to over 15, with previous awards received at The Guild of Fine Food’s Great Taste Awards, the Irish Quality Food Awards, Blas na hEireann and PLMA’s Salute to Excellence Awards.

Diarmuid Murphy, Simply Better Brand Manager, said, “We are absolutely thrilled that our Simply Better Irish Angus Steaks have been named some of the world’s best steaks. We are proud to source our Irish Angus Beef from Jennings in Ballinrobe, Co. Mayo, and it comes only from Bord Bia Approved Quality Assured Irish Farms. Our dedicated team of butchers in Tendermeats carefully select and mature our beef to ensure it always delivers on flavour, and this recognition from the World Steak Challenge is a testimony to our commitment to sourcing only the best Irish Angus Beef for our customers.”

The Simply Better 14 Day Matured Irish Angus Fillet Steak

All of the Award Winning Products which are part of the Simply Better Collection are available in selected Dunnes Stores nationwide.  For more information on the Dunnes Stores Simply Better Collection visit or on social media - @simplybetterds.

6th Annual Taste of Wicklow Food Festival will be held on June 30th & July 1st 2018

The 6th Annual Taste of Wicklow Food Festival will be held at the stunning Abbey Grounds, in Wicklow Town, over the weekend of June 30th & July 1st 2018. This year the food and music festival will run over the two days in conjunction with the start of The Round Ireland Yacht Race in Wicklow Town.

On Saturday 30th June a wonderful weekend in Wicklow Town kicks off with the start of the Round Ireland Yacht Race with a full programme of family entertainment at the historic Black Castle.

The festivities continue with a variety of national and local talents ready to put on an unforgettable show sure to electrify the crowd starting from 5pm – 10pm. The programme features Cafolla & Engel, Seo Linn, Music Generation Wicklow, Look to The Lady, and Xquisite Dance - five acts that are no strangers to putting on powerful performances.

Local Celebrity Chef, Kevin Dundon, loves going to Taste of Wicklow

On Sunday celebrity chefs Catherine Fulvio, Kevin Dundon and Paul Kelly together with local chefs will be cooking up a storm throughout the day with masterclass demonstrations — if you fancy yourself as the next Gordan Ramsey you can't miss this!

Catherine Fulvio's kitchen garden is looking great just in time for the Taste of Wicklow

 The programme will feature over 30 artisan food and craft stalls who have been tweaking their delicacies for months just for this moment, and can't wait for you to sample the absolute best in food that Wicklow has to offer.

Pastry Chef and chocolate maestro Paul Kelly is looking forward to Taste of Wicklow

Entertainment for the whole family is guaranteed as a packed schedule of free entertainment will be running for all the family — face painters, children's games, entertainers, puppet and circus shows, to name just a few of the activities.

For the 6th year running, The Taste of Wicklow is proudly sponsored by Gallagher's SuperValu Wicklow and is organised by Wicklow Town & District Chamber.

Speaking at the photo call, Wicklow Town & District Chamber President Robin Bradley said: "Now in its sixth year, The Taste of Wicklow Food Festival has become the standout social event of the year in Wicklow Town and this year sets out to promote all the food producers in County Wicklow."

A buzz is brewing in Wicklow Town, as local businesses and the festival committee get ready to showcase Wicklow Food, Fun , Music and more in the sunny southeast!

Weekend Tickets include entry to our Taste of Wicklow Raffle. Under 12's go FREE with all ticket options. Day tickets will be €10 at the Gate over the weekend. Early Bird Tickets (offering 25% off) are Now Available online at , but act fast as the tickets are rapidly running out - once they're gone, they gone!

I'll be down at Taste of Wicklow helping Kenny Maguire Demos with the stagecraft for the weekend too, so do come along and say "Hi!" - Zack

Applications for the Foodie Destinations Award 2018 are Now Open

The Restaurants Association of Ireland have just launched their search for the Foodie Destinations 2018, with applications now being accepted. The aim of the award is to celebrate Ireland’s unique and wonderful food offerings and to encourage local food tourism initiatives across the country.

The Foodie Destinations 2018 winner will be a destination that: 

  • Actively promotes itself through joint promotional activities such as food festivals, gourmet trails or farmers’ markets as well as great dining experiences for locals and visitors alike. 
  • Will have established a local producer/supplier network which is utilised and promoted by local businesses. 
  • Plans for future growth and investment into the food and hospitality industry at a local level will also be taken into consideration by Foodie Destinations judges. 
  • Education, training, development and employment will be key components of the ultimate food Foodie Destination. 
  • Collaboration is of utmost importance - we want to see communities working towards a common goal.

The 2017 Foodie Destinations Winner was West Cork

"This year there will also be the addition of a new award category of ‘Foodie Town’ and this category name refers to both towns and villages," said Adrian Cummins, CEO Restaurant Association of Ireland, which pioneered the Foodie Destinations Award initiative in 2014, initially as part of the Irish Restaurant Awards. "Tourism or vacationing should be a primary component of the local culture and economy. These towns offer a stand-alone, unique food and tourism visitor experience which does not expand out to the surrounding areas," he added.

The competition welcomes back FBD Insurance as the official sponsor, for the second year.

John Reade, Head of Business Insurance at FBD Insurance said, "FBD Insurance is a proud sponsor of The Foodie Destinations Award and it is our pleasure to be associated with an event supporting the agri food industry and wider business community. For 50 years FBD Insurance has been proud to support local community initiatives and as Irelands only indigenous Insurer we are delighted to see so many communities developing their own food culture offerings and contributing to the wonderfully diverse food culture in Ireland."

If your town, village, suburb or region thinks you have a unique food tourism offering and would like to apply, go to where you will find the Entry Criteria, a template of the application form and a link to the Official Entry Form.

The deadline for applications is 12 noon on Thursday 12th of July and the Winner will be announced on the 28th of August 2018.

Follow the Foodie Destinations Award as it progresses, on Social Media at hashtag #FoodieDestinations and on Facebook Here and Twitter Here

If you have any queries regarding entry, contact Shauna on 00 353 (1) 677 9901 or


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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