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West Cork chef Bryan McCarthy is back in Cork and at the helm in Greene’s in McCurtain Street. And he is looking forward to the new challenge. You can expect to see foraged items on the menu but his aim is for “simple food from the best of ingredients, cooked in a contemporary Irish style”.
Bryan is something of a forager himself but he will rely also on Ballyhoura Mushrooms and on Michelle Walshe for sea foraging. Greene’s have long used top local suppliers such as Ummera Smokery and Ardsallagh Goat Cheese and they continue to feature on the menu. The newly installed head chef has added Jack McCarthy (pork, bacon, including the famous black pudding, of course) and is looking forward to using even more of the fantastic vegetables from Waterfall Farm.
Jack Mac certainly stood out in my starter during last weekend's visit. Here the Black Pudding and Pork Belly featured with scallops, all served with apple and cider in a flavoursome combination.
Our other starter was also top drawer, featuring the Ummera Smoked Salmon served three ways, with Lemon, Beetroot, Crème Fraiche, Cucumber and Organic Leaves enhancing the superb West Cork product.
Bryan McCarthy is almost synonymous with the slow cooked Feather Blade of Hereford Beef in these parts and, served with Onion, Shiitake Mushroom and Mashed Potato, this tender tasty treat was impossible to resist and was as good as ever.
Pork Belly, Scallop and Black Pudding.
A superb dish also was the Duo of Lamb, with Beluga Lentils, Chorizo, Ballyhoura Oyster Mushroom and Ardsallagh Goat Cheese. By the way, in case you are getting worried, the menu still features a selection of fine fish dishes (after all, Bryan is from Leap). Poultry too, including Skeaghanore Duck, and Pigeon was introduced last Sunday!
No shortage of choice here. And they have a great Early Bird deal going, €27.00 for four courses up to 7.00pm at the weekend and all night earlier in the week. Service here is friendly and quite informed about the food. Helpful also. Just a small example. When we ordered herbal tea, they brought a whole box over to the table so that we could choose at our leisure.
We got a nice table by the floodlit waterfall and indeed there were two groups that got even closer, choosing to dine outside as the night was so mild. Almost forgot to tell you about the Amuse Bouche, well detailed by our helpful server. It was a Spinach Mousse with Smoked Duck. A good start to an excellent meal.