Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Taste of the Week. Sage Lentil Dhal Hot Pot

Taste of the Week 

Sage Lentil Dhal Hot Pot

Necessity may be the mother of invention and Kevin Aherne of Sage may well be the father. Recently honoured by the Georgina Campbell Awards for his sure touch as a master of the pivot, a pivot enforced by Covid and its restrictions.

The chef quickly shifted focus from the restaurant to the retail side and soon had many restaurant quality products available and on sale in food shelves all over the city and county.

I quickly cottoned on to his hot pots and pies and found quite a few gems including his Pork Pot (slow-cooked pork, stroganoff style with Lemon and Sage) and the Vegan Pot (red dhal with lentils, chickpeas, potatoes, cumin and coriander).

I hit the jackpot again this week with his Lentil Dhal Hot Pot (pulses, grains, veggies, herbs, slow-cooked in rich stock of tomatoes and spices with coconut, red chilli and lime leaves). By the way, you'll know all the high quality ingredients, no unpronounceable ingredients or strange numbers.

It is very versatile. Delicious on its own, with boiled rice and flatbread, great with grilled halloumi or salmon. We added the salmon on this occasion and it turned out great, a smashing Taste of the Week.

Sage Midleton



Butcher Jerry Kennedy outside the shop in Dingle

After a two-year absence, Cork’s Market Lane group of restaurants will once again celebrate the arrival of prized Blasket Island Lamb on their October menus.

The group, which includes Market Lane, Elbow Lane, ORSO, and Castle Restaurant Blackrock are the only restaurants in the country to showcase this delicious award-winning produce which is available in very limited supply. Dishes, which have been created by executive chef, Stephen Kehoe, will be on menus for 2 weeks from mid-October until all of this wonderful produce has been served up to appreciative diners.


Some examples of dishes include ‘Braised Moroccan Blasket Island lamb shank on a bed of turmeric, feta, pomegranate and giant couscous served with lamb reduction, ‘Braised Lamb shoulder glazed in pomegranate molasses lamb jus, with warm baba ghanoush and ribbons of carrot and cucumber in caraway pickle’, ‘Monkfish, lamb pastrami, tomato and horseradish salsa with mussel emulsion’ and ‘Wood-grilled lamb chops, ember cooked courgette, pistachio mole and feta’.


Their island habitat is what makes this lamb so special. The animals graze on the small Blasket island of Beginish, a natural bird sanctuary, which means that the soil is incredibly fertile.  There the lambs, which are born in the summer, graze in a marshy meadow full of heather, grasslands and wild herbs, which gives the meat a unique depth of flavour. The meadow is salty from sea spray, and this gives the lamb its highly valued pre-sale flavour.

As the animals are free to roam uninterrupted, there is no forced fattening.  The lamb is leaner, “creating a near-perfect fat to meat ratio” says award-winning Dingle Butcher, Jerry Kennedy, who looks after the lamb when it comes off the island.  “This is the perfect example of produce that is not only free-range, but contains no additives, colourants or preservatives and is vaccination free.” 

Kehoe says “this is arguably the most delicious lamb in the country and we are delighted as a group to highlight it.  Its impeccable provenance is reflected in its superior quality and flavour. We are very proud to be the only restaurants to serve it to our customers, and are delighted to have it back again as a highlight of our Autumn menus.”

For further information about this celebration of Blasket Island Lamb at the Market Lane Group check out

Press release



Ballymaloe Original Relish is now available in 500 Tesco stores across Great Britain and Northern Ireland

Pictured at Tesco, Newry, are Peter Rodgers, Business Manager Valeo Foods; Michael Crealey, Tesco Northern Ireland Buyer;  Niamh Wall, Ballymaloe Foods Account Manager. Pic Aaron McCracken


Ballymaloe Foods is growing its business in Great Britain and Northern Ireland thanks to increased demand for its products. The Cork based food company has signed a new nationwide deal with Tesco in Great Britain which sees 170 additional stores stocking its Ballymaloe Original Relish. The additional stores bring the total to more than 500 stores across Great Britain and Northern Ireland. 


In addition, Ballymaloe Foods has agreed a deal with Tesco in Northern Ireland to stock Ballymaloe Pickled Irish Beetroot for the first time. Consumers in Northern Ireland are now able to pick up a delicious jar of Ballymaloe Pickled Irish Beetroot.  The Beetroot is available in dices or slices and is a great accompaniment to salads, sandwiches and much more. Ballymaloe Foods is working in partnership with Valeo Foods to distribute its products. 


General Manager of Ballymaloe Foods, Maxine Hyde said: “We have strong ambitions to grow in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. There is so much love for the brand across retail and foodservice and it is wonderful to see that our Original Relish is on Tesco shelves in every corner of the UK. Our products continue to be extremely popular in Northern Ireland and the addition of Ballymaloe Sliced and Diced Beetroot means even more choice for the consumer. Over the last few years our Original Relish has become the go-to relish for many foodservice places in the North and we are delighted to be appearing on menus in places such as General Merchants, Blend and Batch, Toast Office and RetrosGrilled Cheese.”


Peter Rodgers, Business Manager, Valeo Foods Northern Ireland added: It has been fantastic to further develop our partnership with Ballymaloe Foods and Tesco Northern Ireland with the listing of the award-winning and delicious Ballymaloe Beetroot products, which we supply from our Lisburn warehouse.


All the beetroot used by Ballymaloe Foods is planted, pickled and packed locally in East Cork making it the only 100% Irish locally produced beetroot available nationwide. The entire range of Ballymaloe Sliced and Diced Irish Beetroot has been recognised at the Great Taste Awards in 2020 and 2021 and displays the unmistakable black and gold logo, a stamp of excellence that is recognised by retailers and consumers alike. When the judges of the Great Taste Awards tasted its diced beetroot in 2020 they awarded 2 stars out of a maximum of 3 and commented: “This is pure, beautiful beetroot, naturally sweet and packed with all the sweet earthiness we expected. The beetroot has retained its natural crunch. So clever - so well done.” 

 press release

Brewery Nooze🍺🍻 Cidery, Meadery too. With Whiplash, Torc, Longueville, Crew, Ballykilcavan, Kinsale Mead, Lineman, Rye River, Wicklow Wolf, DrinkiQ

 Brewery Nooze🍺🍻

Cidery, Meadery too..

with Whiplash, Torc, Longueville, Crew, Ballykilcavan, Kinsale Mead, Lineman, Rye River, Wicklow Wolf, DrinkiQ


Whiplash bring back SWOON!

Been a while since we’ve seen this lad! Swoon was one of our very early DIPAs and we’re glad to see it back. Full of Vic Secret and Chinook, it’s a pure silky banger. With grapefruit and spruce from the Chinook, it gets a fruity bomb from the Vic Secret, bringing us apricots, melons & strawberries for some beautiful balance. It rounds out super mellow with a soft bitterness. There’s a reason we keep coming back to this one.
Swoon hits the webshop today Wednesday (29th Sep).
A big thanks to Neil Antcliff (@foundry5) who killed it on our wall mural!
We've incorporated all aspects under one roof including the cocoa fruit for @killarney_chocolate, coffee berries for @killarneycoffeeroasters, barley used for our brewing and distilling with @killarneydistillery, and finally the hop flower, showing lupulin glands which are an essential part of brewing our beer!

Get this - the new kid on the block. Longueville House Cider Mor at 8% ABV and in easy to open 75cl screw top bottles. Ideal for picnic baskets and hamper fillers or simply kept stocked in the fridge for a convenient glass of ice cold delicious Irish cider.
*********Well done to Crew Brewing

We had the best time Friday night celebrating our first birthday! Huge thanks to everyone for a year of support, for celebrating with us, for the kind words and, most of all, for the cakes. Delighted to announce we were able to raise €1,110.78 for !
No Stopping Ballykilcavan

We're putting in a path around the mill building. A lot of it will be new limestone, but we're reusing these old flags that we had to take out of the grain store three years ago when we converted it into the brewery.
Idea by Niall, execution by Pat.
Thrilled to announce that Laois's finest - The Lost Messiahs - are going to be playing a gig here in Ballykilcavan on the Sunday of the October bank holiday weekend. Tickets at €20 plus booking fee available now at


Kinsale Mead Co

The process of making our special reserve Wildflower Mead has just started here at the meadery in Kinsale.... it is our only mead that uses exclusively Irish honey, a rare commodity as Ireland is the 3rd lowest producer of honey in the EU, only ahead of Malta and Luxembourg. We collected up the honey from our friend Paul at the Chanting Bee Apiary last week ago. Paul's bees forage on Irish hawthorn and hedgerow blackberry blossoms, which give it that distinct and delicious taste, different to our own meads and indeed from any other drink on the market. It's a sublime, semi-sweet dessert mead, an alchemy of the bounty of the bees and time. What's the secret ingredient? It's the West Cork terroir - our local byways and meadows, and of course the stupendous Wild Atlantic Way.

Try with Goat’s cheese or crème brulée or baked New York cheesecake or just as an after dinner sipping delight.

Check it out here 



Announcing a new addition to our range

FLUID DYNAMIC - New Beer Alert


We've got a new beer release this week. It's called FLUID DYNAMIC and it's a 4.8% extra pale ale. 

Extra pale ales have been some of our favourite beers over the past year. Unsurprisingly really because it's pretty much the perfect hoppy style in my opinion. Neither malt nor hops dominate. Instead, they play nicely together, offering layers of aroma and flavour throughout. In the much the same vein as VESPER, ELECTRIC AVENUE 2 and DIAL TONE, this beer is designed to be sessionable and refreshing. We have been working on this throughout the year and we're very happy to finally be able to present it now.
We've started sending this out to our distributors, so you should see it in your favourite off licence or bars this week. I hope you enjoy it. Cheers!
Available in 440ml cans. Also available in keg for on-trade.

Another work day done and dusted, it's time to clock off with our Grafters Clocking Off Kölsch Style!
It's an excellent one to pick up to celebrate Oktoberfest at home. Did you know that the pilsner malt we use in our Kölsch style brew is sourced directly from Germany? 🇩🇪 And we're delighted that it was awarded one star at the 2021 Great Taste Awards ! ⭐
So it's time to bust out a stein and pour yourself a fresh one - don't forget the pretzels! You can find our Grafters range exclusively in Dunnes Stores. Prost!
New in the wild - from Wicklow Wolf

We are incredibly proud of Locavore Autumn 2021, it is a real showcase of the hard work put into the beer by our brewers, the flavours of Wicklow imparted on the beer and everything that the Locavore Project showcases.
Brewed in Autumn 2020 and aged for 12 months in Wicklow Oak barrels, this is a truly unique Barleywine.
Releasing into the wild from the 4th of October. More here.

Want to know more about alcohol and finding the right balance? #DRINKiQ #Positivedrinking #celebratemoderation