2018 Award Winners CHEF OF THE YEAR 2018

David McCann, Executive Head Chef, Dromoland Castle, Co Clare

David McCann, Executive Head Chef, Dromoland Castle, Co Clare

Casual dining may still be the big story but fine dining is far from dead - and, regardless of style, the restaurants that are performing best are those led by people like our long established Chef of the Year, who are grounded in classical cooking.

There are several outstanding chefs among this year’s award winners and we commend hem all - and especially one who - despite his youthful demeanour - has been carrying the torch for fine dining at the highest level for several decades - and, since 1995, at one of Ireland’s best-loved castle hotels, Dromoland Castle, Co Clare.

Many would cite the ancestral home of the O’Briens, as their favourite Irish castle and, fortunately, these days it’s home to two quiet giants of Irish hospitality, GM, Mark Nolan - who has always been a fearless fighter for the West of Ireland as a prime visitor destination - and Executive Head Chef David McCann, whose predictably glamorous offerings are underpinned by classical training and immaculate sourcing of ingredients.

Although he is responsible for all of the estate’s dining operations, it is through the unique dining experience that is The Earl of Thomond Restaurant that David McCann’s style is best expressed and a memorable meal there this year was another reminder of the way in which he has continued to develop over the years while always upholding the highest of standards - and leading a first class and fiercely loyal kitchen brigade who work seamlessly with a well trained front of house team managed with warmth by Host of the Year Tony Frisby.

A benchmarking chef, if ever there was one - and what a team.


8 votes

Dromoland Castle Hotel

Newmarket-on-Fergus, Co. Clare
Castle / Hotel / Restaurant
For Cooking & Service Well Above Average Deluxe Accommodation Denotes genuine Irish food culture, ie special Irish food products/companies/producers, and highlights the best places to shop for regional and artisan foods; the selection excludes obvious 'non-Irish' elements regardless of quality, eg ethnic restaurants and specialists in coffee, wine and other drinks, unless relevant to local production or history. Eat & Stay establishments are chosen for their commitment to showcasing local produce and Irish hospitality. Outstanding Location, building or atmosphere Previous Georgina Campbell Guides Award Winner The "Best of the Best" - Only the very best establishments across various categories have been chosen for this accolade
The ancestral home of the O'Briens, barons of Inchiquin and direct descendants of Brian Boru, High King of Ireland, this is one of the few Irish estates tracing its history back to Gaelic royal families, and it is now one of Ireland's grandest hotels, ...

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