McCarthys of Kanturk

McCarthy's of Kanturk & Myrtle AllenRecently singled out by the Irish Food Writers Guild, who honoured them with an Award for their notable contribution to Irish food, McCarthy’s of Kanturk in Co Cork is an institution that is very definitely ‘worth a detour’.

Jack McCarthy and his son Tim come from a long line of butchers. In 1892 Callaghan McCarthy, in despair at the poor meat he had bought, decided to give up being a baker and learn how to become a butcher. The family has since been perfecting their techniques and developing new and value-added meat products for five generations.

Guild members who have been judging butchers’ competitions for many years know well that the McCarthys have consistently won gold for the high standard of their traditional spiced beef, dry-cured bacon, interesting sausages and their ability in producing an ever-increasing range of cured, smoked and marinated beef, pork and lamb products, including particularly broad and innovative ranges of both continental-style charcuterie and traditional, fresh blood black puddings.

McCarthy's of Kanturk - Black PuddingRecent highlights in the McCarthy’s career have ranged from a visit from 23 members of the French Brotherhood of the Knights of the Black Pudding, who presented Jack with a Gold Medal for his fresh blood pudding, to working with chef, Ross Lewis of Chapter One Restaurant, to create a bespoke pudding to serve at the state banquet celebrating Queen Elizabeth’s visit to Ireland in 2011.

They also introduced Ireland’s first “Practical Pig in a day” courses for chefs, single pig families and food lovers. The McCarthy’s approach combines the best of tradition with creativity – their products are superb and, if you can’t make it to Kanturk, they have an excellent online shop as well.

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