Positivity in the Cork Kerry Air at Annual Food Forum


Positivity in the Cork Kerry Air at Annual Food Forum
Peter, Beara Gin

It may have been wet and windy outside the City Hall last Friday evening but inside there was a sunny positivity around the stalls. Beara Gin are exporting to the continent; Joe’s Farm’s new Potato Crisps are going very well; Longueville House ciders have had an excellent year; Kinsale Mead and Stonewell Cider also speak well of their 2018 experiences.

Beara Gin are relative newcomers, just over 12 months in existence. But they are making their mark in the competitive Irish market and Brand Manager Peter White told me they are already exporting to Germany, Poland and Denmark. A pallet has just been dispatched to France and they are now working on Italy. 
Rupert, Longueville

Apple Wine
Getting into a new export market takes patience and time so best of luck to Peter and all at Beara Gin whose gins are infused with salt water and sugar kelp. They have two gins on the market, the original Ocean Gin and their Pink Ocean Gin (here the addition of Cranberry and Rosewater adds the pink hue).

Rupert Atkinson, the smiling face of Longueville Beverages, reported an excellent year, particularly the last six months. “The hot weather sent cider sales flying and the fact that it is available in O’Brien’s was also a big factor.” Longueville normally have lots of apples for sale but not this time as stocks of cider and apple brandy have to be replenished.

Stonewell are another top local cider-maker and they are known for their innovation, both summer and winter. Their winter offering this year made its debut in the City Hall. It is a Nohoval Irish Apple Oak Wine, the finest Irish apples raised in traditional French casks. Superlative is mentioned on the label. I couldn’t argue with that!
Mead trio

And speaking of innovation, Denis and Kate of Kinsale Mead were right alongside. Kate showed me their gorgeous gift pack of three miniatures, a wee bottle each of Hazy Summer Mead, Wild Red Mead and Atlantic Dry Mead. Not just a package; it is delightfully illustrated with the story of mead. Worth a look. By the way, if you want some of that Hazy Summer, you’ll need to act fast. “That went very well for us,” Kate said and stocks are fast running down.
Crisps

Sandra Burns of Killeagh, whose Joe’s Farm vegetable crisps have become a favourite over the past couple of years, was delighted with the reception the new Potato Crips have received over the past year and said they flew out the door during the Ploughing Championships. Husband Joe is a big fan of the new crisps (a mix of colours), all made at the family farm in Ballycurraginny. Both the vegetable and potato crips are widely available, including SuperValu.

Recently, they had a pumpkin picking day on the farm and were inundated when they put out a call for pickers, individuals and schools among the volunteers. Sandra was delighted with the schools as it turned the day into an easy going food education event. See more about it here on their Facebook page.

I think I’ll have a few Tastes of the Week from that lot in future posts on the blog.

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