Showing posts with label Old Butter Roads Food Trail. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Old Butter Roads Food Trail. Show all posts

Sunday, May 6, 2018

A Bit of Banter. At Old Butter Roads Launch in Blarney


A Bit of Banter
At Old Butter Roads Launch in Blarney
Joe McNamee with, from left, Martina and Tricia Cronin and Lenka Forrest

“Sometimes you need to be broken to get stronger”, said Martina Cronin, Chef at the Square Table where her twin sister Tricia is front of house and manager, at the launch of the 2018 Old Butter Roads Food Trail in The Church Of The Resurrection Blarney on Saturday.

Martina was responding to journalist Joe McNamee whose gentle prompting drew some terrific answers from the chefs and producers on stage. Martina paid tribute to her mother: “The house was very food oriented.” But she was in transition year before she made her mind up to be a chef.

Ciaran Scully, teacher and chef, “had me ready for Dublin” where her education continued under top chefs Ross Lewis and Graham Neville. One of the things she learned along the way and which she and Tricia implemented at the Square Table was to use local as much a possible. “This way we met and got to know the local producers and that in some ways led to this festival.”
Hegarty's cheese

Joe asked Tricia how customers reacted to local produce. Her years in Jacques gave her a good grounding and introduced her to local produce. “I enjoy engaging with the customers on local produce and local producers. But you do need to know your stuff. There’s a lot of homework to be done, especially with new dishes. I find too that now locals and international customers are talking about the Old Butter Roads.”


Lenka Forrest who runs the Old Blarney Post Office Café in the village started here about two years ago and immediately “clicked” with the Cronin twins and Maire, the chair of the Old Butter Roads. “It is important to promote the great food that's within this area to locals and tourists. I was happy to get the call to join the OBR. And happy too to see how Irish food has changed over the past twenty years.”
Victor of Bluebell Falls

Pat Mulcahy
Lenka, originally from Czechoslovakia (“the Czech side!”), didn’t really have a food background. But spotted the closed-up Post Office and rented it. “I didn’t know anything about the business, about the margins. It is a tiny place - you can see us make everything. We use the right ingredients and give good customer service. I like sharing food and love to see people enjoying our food.”

Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Enjelvin is helping Dan Hegarty of Whitechurch make his great cheese for the past two years or so. He admitted he had no idea about Irish cheese but soon discovered “other amazing cheese makers, Gubbeen, Milleens, Coolea”. Hegarty’s are long renowned for their cheddar but Jean-Baptiste told us that the range is expanding, a Comte/Gruyere style, and had some delicious samples to share.


Zwena McCullough of the nearby Hydro Farm Allotments said she is passionate about growing. “We share everything in the allotments, including the fruit cage. It is organic, no chemicals, we have a great community from tiny tots to the quite elderly. A great variety of nationalities including a Moroccan lady who makes a great tagine! We help educate by running courses and so on.”


Victor from Bluebell Falls was also on the platform - they weren't all up together! And he told Joe his story. We visited his farm recently and you can see all the details here
Hydro Farm Allotments 


Pat Mulcahy from Ballinwillin Farm told us his business includes deer, wild boar, and goats, B&B, lunch, evening meals. He has about 40 meat products, all through organic farming. He found lots of obstacles at the start: “You need to be determined, lots of walls to jump.” Now he works with many chefs to get his food message across.


And while he meets some of the biggest names in the industry it is often at home that he feels the big pride. “The chest expands,” he admitted, “when I’m sitting around the breakfast table with guests from many countries enjoying the farm food as was the case this morning.” You’ll probably be hearing more from Ballinwillin about wellness and the link with food as they are seriously looking at the influence of quality and authenticity on good health.


All together now!

Pat also imports his own wine from Hungary. “Some of the best winemakers in the world are in Hungary but they don’t sell. We were lucky to get into partnership in a cellar and now bottle and import our own range of wine. Growing grapes is like farming - that's what attracted me."

The Aubane community seem to be ahead of the posse on the Old Butter Roads as they celebrated the 250th anniversary 20 years back and Celeste Buckley told us on Saturday about another celebration on May 18th next, the 270th, with a five course meal at the local community centre to be followed by music and dancing. “We have a very exciting menu for the event and are really looking forward to the night.” Details on here
Jean-Baptiste

Kanturk too will be involved and we heard from Timmy McCarthy, the 5th generation butcher from the town. “We can't move forward without taking inspiration from the past. We have a rich array of producers and it all needed direction. This is a platform to promote the area!”


Joe McNamee then officially declared the event open. “This is a tremendous initiative. Food and tourism are intertwined and contributed to the country's recovery. The quality of the food and the movement of small premium producers led to this. But don’t reserve your support for special occasions. Support these producers in your weekly shopping.”

Chairperson Maire Ní Mhurchu, a founder member, then invited us to sample the trays of tasty bites laid out for us and so we did. “We all have a passion about food,” she said earlier. “We are a  cooperative group and intend to show the area at its best. Our new website has been launched. As you know our logo is the Milk Churn.”

Joe McNamee launches the 2018 event.


“This is a great unspoiled area, yet very close to the city. There is a great heritage here and that shouldn't be forgotten either and the Aubane celebration is part of it as it the cart outside built by the local mens shed.”

Soon the celebrations began. Indeed, I suspect they had already begun in nearby Blairs Inn. Next stop after the church opening was Lenka’s cafe where Pat Mulcahy was roasting one of his wild boars. Lots of events coming up over the month so do stay in touch with the website and also their Face book page

Also of interest:


Monday, July 3, 2017

Killavullen Farmers Market. Old Butter Roads Food Trail Highlighted

Killavullen Farmers Market

Old Butter Roads Food Trail Featured
Country kitchen. Norma's demo

A little mist, a little sun, lots of good local produce and a friendly face at every stall was the impression from Saturday’s visit to the Killavullen Farmers Market, a market held, by the way, mostly in a large growing tunnel! So, well capable of dealing with the rain if need be.

Aside from the usual contributors, the market took the opportunity last Saturday to highlight the newly formed Old Butter Roads Food Trails with a couple of related demos. Food Trails chairperson Maire Ní Mhurchu filled us in on the reasons behind the venture which has “brought together producers, eateries, visitor attractions and associations” from the general North Cork region covering Muskerry, Avondhu and Duhallow.


Stefan's delicious honey
 “We are doing it to support one another,” said Maire (who has her own local business Activity Days). Mary Sleeman, chairperson of the Killavullen Market, had a big welcome for us all and gave us a brief history of butter in the area saying Ireland, and Cork in particular, “is ideal for dairy”.


All the while, John was getting on with making butter and it turned out very well indeed, the audience delighted with the taste. “Do your own,” encouraged John. “There are lots of home separators available.”

Another demo followed, this by Norma, from the newly opened Praline, a Pastry Shop and Cafe in Mitchelstown. She picked up a few ingredients around the market for her Knickerbocker Glory. “Easy to make,” she said. Easy to eat also, as it vanished in no time!

Mary Sleeman welcomes all (top left). Maura and Ciaran (top right) and, below, John shows his newly made butter.

The market, held every second Saturday (check the calendar here), takes place in the grounds of the Nano Nagle Centre, just outside the village on the main Mallow-Fermoy road, about forty minutes from the city. You may also take a walk through part of the centre and down by the river.

But we’ve come mainly for the stalls and have bags to fill. First of all though, an ice-cream, hard to resist!

There is a great variety of produce here: plants, including herbs, organic produce, jams and chutneys, home-baking, bread (Arbutus), honey, tea, coffee, cookies and more. You may also get natural soaps and oils, healing therapies, secondhand books and so on; you may even throw your own clay pot. It changes seasonally, of course, and do watch out for special events.
Fruit skewers
 After that ice-cream, we had a chat and a tasting of her honey smoked salmon with Sue Parsons of Lyreen Smokehouse. Got some honey direct from the hive and had a few words with the interesting man selling it, healthy living supporter Dr Stefan Buzoianu.


No shortage of bites for lunch and, among other things, we got a couple of slices of quiche from Noreen O’Brien who was also selling organic veg. 

One of the tastiest bites was a sausage roll made with Derryvillane Free Range Pork. Here we were talking to Ciaran and his mother Maura who gave us a bit of background on the family business. Bought some of her free range eggs too and just couldn't resist, for old times sake, a pot of the Crab Apple Jelly from Maura’s Kitchen.
Lunch from Noreen

No shortage of choice here, no shortage of chat either, in this lovely friendly market set in the corner of a field. A sheltered corner, by the way!

Here is a list of the stallholders, including some of the newer ones at the bottom. But it does change from time to time, from season to season.

Peter Rafferty - Flowers, Vegetables & Floral Gifts
Simon Treacy – Apples
Nano Nagle Centre - - Organic Produce
Mossie Buckley – Chemical Free Vegetables
Little Acre Plants
Paddy Walsh Plants
Rosemary Callanan – Natural Soaps & Organic Essential Oils
A Brush with Nature – Buckwheat Salad, Gluten & GMO Free Honey, Pro Biotic Smoothes, Super foods & Vegetables
Maura’s Kitchens – Jelly’s, Jams, Chutney’s & Cordial  
Deirdre’s Home Baking 
Nora Creed Healing Therapies 
Killavullen Organic Buyers (KOB) 
Bring & Buy Charity Bookstall 
Ron Hulshof – Selection of Fresh Breads
Ciara’s Fair trade Tea, Coffee & Cookies

New stallholders include Johnathon Owens , raw milk and yoghurt from his own herd; Hegarty's cheddar; Breda's gluten free baking;  artisan ice cream by Liam Cotter.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

The Old Butter Roads Food Trail Launch. Great Weekend of food and fun in Blarney.

The Old Butter Roads Food Trail Launch

Great Weekend of food and fun in Blarney
We are nothing without the producers - Chef Martina Cronin
Here are five of the best speaking in Blairs on Monday.
Clockwise from top left: Tim McCarthy, Justin Greene, Don O'Leary,
Rubert Atkinson and Pat Mulcahy.

The Old Butter Roads Food Trail is up and running following a sunny (mainly!) weekend launch in the Blarney area. The event was officially opened on Saturday in the Church of Ireland by Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Michael Creed.
Wild Boar at Square Table
There were butter making demos at the Butter Museum, talks at the Hydro Farm Allotments, a pony and trap delivery of churns (the symbol of the food trail) to participating businesses, an ecology walk and talk (by Tom O’Byrne) at Clogheen Milken, the Gab story-telling competition, a smoked produce demo in the Old Blarney Post Office Café, a showcase multi-course dinner in the Square Table, an open weekend at The Farm in Grenagh and a Monday demo, with food and cocktails, at Blairs Inn.


And it wasn’t just Blarney members that were involved. There were producers plus restaurant and café operators from all over the area involved, Duhallow, Muskerry and Avondhu, a serious (if fun-filled) statement of intent for the many events ahead over the rest of the year. Expect a gathering (with food for sure) at the Kerryman’s Table in Aubane, a Tapas style event in Mitchelstown, a Long Table feast by the Killavullen Farmers Market, and more.


Wagyu beef (left) and Angus rib-eye at Square Table
Current members:
Ballinwillin House www.ballinwillinhouse.com
Blair’s Inn www.blairsinn.com
Peppers at The White Deer www.peppersmallow.com
Blarney Castle Hotel www.blarneycastlehotel.com
Nibbles Millstreet www.nibbles.ie
The Square Table www.thesquaretable.ie
Castle Hotel Macroom www.castlehotel.ie
The Old Blarney Post Office Café www.blarneycafe.com
Thatch & Thyme www.thatchandthyme.com
Praline Mitchelstown www.praline.ie
O’Callaghan’s Restaurant www.ocallaghans.ie
Longueville House www.longuevillehouse.ie
O’Brien’s Free Range Eggs, 
Hydro Farm Allotments www.hydrofarmallotments.com
Osbourne Butchers www.blarneybutchers.com
9 White Deer Brewery www.9whitedeer.ie
Longueville House Beverages www.longuevillahouse.ie/artisan.html
Folláin www.follain.ie, 
Annabella Farm, 
Twomey’s Butchers www.mtwomeybutchers.ie
Killavullen Farmers Market www.killavullenfarmersmarket.weebly.com , McCarthy’s Butchers Kanturk www.jackmccarthy.ie
Hegarty’s Cheese, 
Toonsbridge Dairy www.therealoliveco.com
St Anne’s Shandon www.shandonbells.ie, 
Activity Days www.activitydays.ie, 
The Farm Grenagh www.visitthefarm.ie
Cork Butter Museum www.corkbutter.museum


List subject to change as new members join.
The Blairs, Duncan (left) and Richard trying one of his cocktails

Sunday night’s multi-course dinner in the Square Table perfectly illustrated the depth and range of produce available in the general North Cork area.

The opening selection of canapés: 
Lamb Tartare;
Toonsbridge ricotta, apple, hazelnut, beetroot;
Old MillBank smoked salmon rice paper roll, avocado, pickled ginger;
Macroom Buffalo mozzarella, basil pesto, tomato tapenade;
Carrigcleena Farm cured duck, beetroot chutney, confit ginger.

Then, from McCarthy’s Butchers in Kanturk, we had a Black Pudding Roll with house piccalilli and also Crispy Bacon with apple purée.

Next it was the turn of Michael Twomey's Butchers in Macroom: Wagyu beef burger with Hegarty’s Cheddar and house tomato chutney and also enjoyed their Agnus rib-eye with duck fat chip and O’Brien’s free range egg béarnaise.
Hake at the Square Table

Fish then had its turn and the Pan-fried hake (from K O’Connell’s), with Annabelle Farm spinach and mussel velouté was a splendid combination, another tasty testament to the produce and to the skill of Martina in the kitchen, as indeed was the whole meal.

Now we were on  to the Ballinwillin Wild Boar, braised and cured and served with caramelised potato gnocchi, aged Coolea cheese, Ballyhoura Mushrooms and wild garlic. Great stuff.

Dessert was McCarthy’s Natural Dairy’s Buttermilk, foamed, with rhubarb, confit ginger and speculous crumble. Hegarty’s Cheddar  and Toonsbridge smoked Scamorza featured on the cheese plate and the highlight here, as part of the week long tribute in Cork to Veronica Steel, was Milleens Cheese with fig jam. All washed down with a drop of apple brandy from Longueville House who earlier supplied a glass of their excellent cider.
Dessert at the Square Table

And the top class food and drink continued on Monday in the garden at Blair’s Inn where the brothers Richard and Duncan were the hosts, Richard coming up with some inventive cocktails (using everything from stout to apple brandy to gin) while Duncan did the cooking demos.

Longueville's Apple Brandy
went down well at Square Table
Highlight here were the passionate speeches from the producers. Don O’Leary of 9 White Deer Brewery, Justin Greene of Bertha’s Revenge Gin and Ballyvolane House, Timmy McCarthy of McCarthy’s Kanturk, Pat Mulcahy of Ballinwillin House, and Rupert Atkinson of Longueville House all spoke well of their own products, and of the other products of the area.

But there was no trumpet blowing at the expense of other areas. This was underlined, simply and with some wisdom, by Tim McCarthy. If you enjoy the brown bread in Mayo than that's the best in Ireland; if you enjoy the brown bread in Cork, then that's the best in Ireland. 

So enjoy the best of local, wherever you are. And if you are anywhere near the Old Butter Roads Food Trail these coming months, you will be eating, and drinking, very well indeed.
Cheese for two at Square Table
Get the latest on their Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/OldButterRoads/
on Twitter at @oldbutterroads
The Old Butter Road platter at Blairs

Thursday, April 20, 2017

BLAIRS INN OLD BUTTER ROADS FOOD TRAIL FESTIVAL

BLAIRS INN OLD BUTTER ROADS FOOD TRAIL LAUNCH

Duncan Blair has been on to tell us all about their plans for the launch:

> We'll have special Old Butter Road Trail dishes on our menus throughout the launch weekend (28th April to May 1st). We'll be serving artisanal Butter Road cocktails and craft beers throughout all weekend. On Bank Holiday Monday at 4pm we'll be putting on a cooking, craft cocktail and beer Demo in our garden. We be cooking up dishes and breads featuring the produce of the Butter Road.
>
> Hake on Waterfall Farm Kale with a caper Beurre blanc
> Confit of McCarthy's pork belly with a Gubbeen chorizo cassoulet
> Nine White Deer Stout glazed Macroom short rib of beef
> Stag Bán beer & lime sorbet with a Longueville Cider foam
> 60 second beer bread
> Cotton Ball Stout brownies
>
> Richie will be showing off his cocktail skills using our range of artisanal gins, vodkas & whiskeys.
>
> We'll be giving out samples of food and drink. We'll also be serving a special three course dinner featuring the dishes from the demo.


Monday, April 10, 2017

Old Butter Roads Food Trail Festival. Launch April 29-30 in Blarney

Media release
Old Butter Roads Food Trail Festival
Launch April 29-30 in Blarney


A Food Festival to launch the Old Butter Roads Food Trails will take place in Blarney from 29/4 to 1/5 2017. The initiative is being developed by the producers, eateries and visitor attractions to celebrate the range of foods grown and produced in the Muskerry, Duhallow and Avondhu areas of County Cork. The idea started in Blarney through which the Old Butter Road used to bring produce from Kerry via Millstreet into the Butter Market in Shandon to serve the great maritime trade.  

The Old Butter Roads Food Trail escorts visitors through the fertile valleys—the breadbasket of Co Cork—where the rich pasture lands provide the most wholesome and delicious dairy, meats, grains, fruit and vegetables in the country.

The Festival will start on Saturday 29/4 with butter making demonstrations at 12pm and 2pm at the Butter Museum. In Blarney there will be talks between 2pm of 4pm at the Hydro Farm Allotments near Tower on the importance of growing food. A pony and trap will leave the Hydro Farm Allotments to deliver milk churns, the symbols of the Old Butter Roads, to businesses involved in Blarney on the Saturday afternoon about 4pm and be displayed by businesses involved in the Food Trail throughout the year.
Butter and Iron-age bread (by Declan Ryan)

Michael Creed the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine will formally launch the Food Trail at the Church of Ireland, Blarney at 6pm on the Saturday, followed by food tasting from the producers and eateries of the trail.

On Sunday 30/4 there will be a ‘walk & talk’ with Tom O’Byrne at 2pm at the Clogheen Milken on the importance of the ecology. The Gab storytelling competition will take place at 3.30 in the Church of Ireland, followed by Smokin’ Good Time event at 6pm at the Old Blarney Post Office Café showcasing smoked produce of the area. Guest speakers include Tim McCarthy of Kanturk, Patrick Mulcahy of Ballinwillin House and Longueville Cider makers.     

The Square Table restaurant Blarney will be hosting a food event at 8pm. It is a tasting menu which will showcase all the producers on the Old Butter Road Food Trail.  The Farm in Grenagh is holding an open weekend with butter making demonstrations on Monday 1/5 – International Butter Day.
Local food
The Old Butter Roads Food Trail will host events in Kanturk, Macroom, Mallow and Mitchelstown in the following few months to celebrate the food and drink produce of the area.


For Further information Contact      OldButterRoads@gmail.com

Maire ni Mhurchu      Tricia Cronin Rupert Atkinson     
Chairperson Secretary                     Mallow    
Activity Days                             The Square Table                    Longueville House Beverages

Tim McCarthy             Patrick Mulcahy                     Lenka Forrest
Kanturk            Mitchelstown                         Treasurer  
McCarthy’s Butchers  Ballinwillin House           The Old Blarney Post Office Cafe

Sat 29/4
12.00 & 2.30pm



2- 4pm     



5pm

6pm



                              8pm   



Butter Making demonstration at Butter Museum, 1 O Connell Square Cork (beside Shandon Bells)at 12am and 2.30 pm (€4 entry)

Talks on growing foods at Hydro Allotments Blarney

Pony & Trap deliver butter churns to Blarney businesses, start at the Hydro Allotments and arrive in Blarney

Cobh Animations Ladies in the Square 5-7pm

Michael Creed the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine will formally launch the Food Trail at the Church of Ireland, Blarney at 6pm on the Saturday, followed by food tasting from the trail.

Film The Old Butter Roads by Jasper Wynn in garden of Old Post Office & food from members ( or Church of Ireland if raining)











Sun 30/4
all day

2pm   



3.30




6-9pm







8-10pm
Farm Grenagh Open day

Walk at Clogheen Milken Fenn with Tom o Byrne Ecologist on the importance of Balance of the Environment

Gab storytelling competition final on topic of ‘Old Butter Roads’ at the Church of Ireland Blarney organized by Toasmasters and the Gab. Free Event/donations

Smokin’ Good Time an event at the Old Blarney Post Office Café showcasing smoked produce from the Food Trail Area. Guest speakers amongst others include Tim McCasthy of Kanturk and master of the art of butchery and Patrick Mulcahy of Ballinwillin House. Delicious  Longueville Cider will keep all refreshed.     
Taste of the Old Butter Roads at the Square Table, Blarney  (tasting menu showcasing all producers from the trail; pre booked  €55)

Mon 1/5
all Day


Butter Day - Demonstration of Butter making at The Farm Grenagh all day

Week 1 May

Blarney Library - display of books on Cookery, Farming, Dairy Science and  Old Ireland and Cookery Meeting to discuss cookery books on Wednesday am.

Thurs 4th Historical Society   Magic, Faries and Stories at Secondary School