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For every traditionalist who loves the ritual of the turkey, ham, plum pudding and mince pies at Christmas, there is probably another who - for cultural, religious or dietary reasons - celebrates festive occasions differently. Vegetarians and vegans are no longer the small minority that they once were and, even in families where the turkey still takes centre stage at Christmas, there’s a good chance there will be a diner in the group who marches to a different drummer.
Our “Just Ask!” Restaurant of the Month winner for November is Le Pain Quotidien, Kildare Village, Co Kildare. The brainchild of Belgian chef and baker Alain Coumont, Le Pain Quotidien - ‘the daily bread’ - has brought his philosophy of seasonal, organic and local to enthusiastic diners around the world, including the Irish fans who now enjoy their organic breads and wholesome fare around communal tables in Kildare Village
The indomitable Margaret 'Mags' Kirwan - who, with her husband, Ger, runs Goatsbridge Trout Farm in Thomastown, Co Kilkenny - has never been short of ideas. The idea of using their rainbow trout to produce Ireland’s only caviar is a recent, and very successful, example of the way she thinks - and she’s been at it again, this time with a charity cookbook, 'Fishwives', that was completed just in time to launch in Kilkenny Castle last month, at the Savour Kilkenny Food Festival.
Aoife Carrigy meets two pioneers who are producing fine Irish fruit wine. Their new elderberry and blackberry flavour, launched in October, is based on wild elderberries foraged in the Wicklow Mountains during autumn 2015; blended with luscious Irish blackberries, it’s a perfect match for autumn and winter food.
Jeanne Quigley and friends enjoy Dublin’s latest (and most unusual) Afternoon Tea experience - on a vintage tea bus called Pauline. Afternoon tea on a bus driving around the Dublin streets? And not just any bus – a genuine 1961 Routemaster, a real vintage bus named Pauline.
This month Darina talks about "an extraordinary fortnight of random events dreamed up by a small committee of super charged individuals" at the annual Taste of West Cork festival
Word from the West: West of Ireland food writer Anne Marie Carroll reports on Galway's second Food On The Edge international symposium
It is said that behind every great man is a great woman - but in the case of JP McMahon, chef, restaurateur and occasional visionary, there are four. At least. Last month saw the second edition of Food on The Edge, the international food symposium held in Galway, a meeting of the most exciting minds and heavy-hitters from the culinary world.
Yellowman (aka Yellow Man, or Yellaman) is inextricably linked to the Auld Lammas Fair, which has been held in Ballycastle, Co Antrim on the last Monday and Tuesday of August since the 17th century, and is Ireland’s oldest fair. But, with the NI Year of Food 2016 calendar theme for November being ‘Legacy & Learn to…’, what product could be more appropriate to highlight this month?
All the fuss about The Great British Bake Off leaving the BBC has got Food & Travel Writer JILLIAN BOLGER thinking about CAKE SALES - and she is on a (slightly tongue in cheek) mission to raise standards at school halls around the country.
Empowering the Youth and Cross Collaboration will grow Irish Food and Tourism, says our busy Failte Ireland Food Champion, Anthony O'Toole. There is such an abundance of local food tourism initiatives happening on our small green island that I do not know where to start telling you all about it. Over the last few weeks, I’ve been ‘at’ some exceptional festivals and events in Ireland and abroad.