Friday 18 October 2019

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Cork Independent

Bia Sasta

Get down to Dingle next week to taste the best!

Wednesday, 25th September, 2019 4:43pm

Food events are a great way of meeting like-minded people, trying out new food, getting to know chefs and simply having a great time.

Last Saturday was one of these days with the Cork Gourmet Trail taking place during the Cork Oyster Festival. A brainchild of the Trigon Hotel Group, the gourmet trail included six venues with 14 bars and restaurants being included.

As I am a creature of habit, I normally go to the same places when I am in town – so it was great to see what other venues had to offer. I tasted beautiful prawn spring rolls, slow-cooked beef sliders, seared tuna, mushroom tarts, gravlax, pork belly, chicken croquettes, cheesecakes, churro and many other delights.

The tour consisted of five groups of about 20-25 people visiting six venues at different stages with a ‘leader’ for each. Our leader was Sales and Marketing Director of Trigon Group, Raymond Kelleher and we couldn’t have asked for a more attentive and fun guide on the tour.

Each venue greeted us with gusto and it seemed that the staff had almost as much fun as we had. Guests are always invited to wear seafaring hats and I had created a beautiful headpiece of collected seashells – it was first of quite heavy and since it was pouring down, I left it at home.

If there had been a prize for best headpiece, I would have scooped top marks – albeit with a headache from the weight!

Anyhow, everyone enjoyed himself or herself, despite the weather and we met great people on the way.

If you didn’t have a chance to go this year, make sure to mark your diary for 2020.

And talking about food events, Dingle Food Festival is coming up next week with a great programme. It is the one food festival where you can rub shoulders with chefs from all over the country, meet new food producers, taste your way around the town and forget your waistline completely.

It is also the place where the final judging of the Blas na hÉireann takes place and yours truly will be tasting and judging this year.

The taste trail features 79 venues (bet you didn’t think Dingle was big enough for that number of venues!), but you will have to buy a ticket book for the trail, as the venues will not be able to accept cash.

Seeing the list, it will be tough to decide where to eat. Cookery demonstrations are also taking place all over the town, including a hardware store.

Children are well looked after with loads of activities and music lovers are in for some treats as well. The farmer’s market is a must and beer and cider lovers will love the trail through the town with local brewers as well as further afield ones.

Arts and crafts have been included as well, making this festival an all-rounder. I know I will be busy during the weekend and I hope to see you there.

For more details on the programme go to www.dinglefood.com.

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