Showing posts with label West Cork Garlic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label West Cork Garlic. Show all posts

Sunday, September 10, 2017

FEAST. On the Street. The Main Event

FEAST. On the Street

The Main Event
Family day out. Busy side-street.

From the outset of the rebranded FEAST, Saturday had been billed as The Main Event. And the crowds of people up and down Midleton’s Main Street and side streets and in the Farmer’s Market, demonstrated just that. And, once again, the weather played its part, the odd shower no deterrent at all to those strolling and snacking, and those eating a tad more seriously at the long outdoor table opposite the Restaurant Tent where some eleven restaurants were selling delicious small plates at a fiver each.
Ethiopian stall

But is wasn't just the restaurants. Lots of other food (Green Saffron were busy, as always) available as well under the mainly blue sky. Great too to see the local butchers, including Jim Crowley and Frank Murphy, on the street, bakers too and coffee makers. No shortage of sweet stuff as you made your way between the various hot-spots.
The Granary Crew

The Demo Marquee was a magnet as Bertha’s Revenge Gin, Patrick Ryan’s sourdough, and various chefs, including Ciaran Scully, Lilly Higgins, Kevin Aherne and Martin Shanahan kept the punters entertained. Down in the Distillery, you could enjoy a premium whiskey tasting and Carol Quinn’s talk on the  history of whiskey here for a tenner.

Opposite the restaurant area was where the long table was situated and just beyond there was a packed children's zone with music shows, puppet shows, and amusements. The siting of the table and the amusement space close together was great for parents and I saw more than a few taking turns at the table and then relieving the partner on child duty!

The regular Farmer’s Market was also buzzing. Maybe one day, all will be accommodated on Main Street but on Saturday the traders were doing well. Had a friendly word with the Lobsterman who I’d met in Rostellan the evening before. Baker Declan Ryan was, as ever, on duty at Arbutus stall while Noreen Conroy was as busy and as friendly as ever at Woodside Farm. Nearby, at the Courthouse, the friendly GIY folk were dishing out advice on what to grown, how to grow it and when.
Monkfish, chorizo, flatbread by Samphire (at Garryvoe Hotel)

Back on Main Street, it was hard to make choices. Would have been a gargantuan feat to sample something from all eleven restaurants! And that would leave out all the others. Tough. I had heard on the Twitter that Farmgate’s Chowder was a thing of splendour but by then I had had my fill.

One of the highlights was the Monkfish and chorizo flatbread served by head chef Kevin at the Samphire (Garryvoe Hotel) stand. The crab beignet by Pier 26 went down well. Jack and his team at the Granary Cafe stand were busy and their massive baked Rooster (with Ballinrostig nettle and  cream cheese and Gubbeen chorizo) was quite a treat and I also got a few pastries here to bring home.
Garlic selection

Indeed, that bag for home filled rapidly. Included were the Mango, Peach and habanero chutney a new product from the Rebel Chilli lads, some garlic (including Avram, Lautrec, and Pink Marble) from West Cork Garlic, a bag of Honduran coffee beans from  Badger & Dodo and 30-day aged beef from Woodside. Happy out, as we headed west from F-EAST! Here’s to next year.
Busy butcher Jim Crowley
See other posts from FEAST 2017

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

West Cork Garlic

West Cork Garlic

Great to meet up with Axel and Marye Miret, the people who run West Cork Garlic, at their stall in the Kinsale Farmers Market last Wednesday. They were excited at a recent successful crop but even more excited about next year when thousands and thousands of bulbs will be planted

While they are relatively new to the commercial side of garlic growing, they have for many years been growing garlic successfully in their kitchen garden and soon became as the “Garlic People”. Now their garlic is used in some restaurants and for sale in shops such as URRU in Bandon and in On The Pig’s Back in Douglas. They also sell some handy garlic tools at their market stall and, if you want to sample the garlic itself  in the city centre, check it out at Bradley’s, North Main Street, where I first came across it last Tuesday.

Not alone do they sell garlic but they can also sell you the material to grow your own and are quite happy to dispense advice on how to get the best out if it. “We will be more than happy to share our experience and passion and provide you with all you need to for a successful home crop.”

You can meet them all over West Cork at the Markets: Kinsale (Wednesday), Dunmanway (Thursday), Clonakilty (Friday), Skibbereen (Saturday) and Enniskeane (one Saturday per month). You may also like to look at their website.

If you want to get sowing yourself, you don’t have that much time. Well, don’t wait until the spring as most garlic is planted in late autumn and early winter, some varieties as early as September!

So let us wish the enterprising couple all the best with their big planting next season. They are doing us all a favour. “West Cork Garlic, a welcome home-grown alternative to the Chinese garlic flooding the country,” according to Darina Allen. Import substitution is the name of the game here and we can all play a part, by buying from the Mirets or by planting up a patch in the back garden.