CORK GOURMET TRAIL
|Captains Sylvia and Sandra|
Scores of pirates gathered in Cork City on Saturday. But their intentions were benign. Make the most of the inaugural Cork Gourmet Trail was the mission and it was accomplished with much fun, thanks to our merry captains.
First call was to Soho in mid-morning where a Pannier Champagne reception was laid on. There was a pirate hat competition running and early favourites emerged at the photo call. Champers downed, the gathering was divided into three crews and marched out on to the streets.
Led by feisty captains Sylvia and Sandra, our crew wandered peacefully through the side streets until we reached Greens by the Waterfall where the host restaurant was joined by Isaacs and the Rising Tide in dishing up the grub. The grog, as was the case in all four venues, was sponsored by Classic Drinks.
On then to the Boardwalk – nobody had to walk the plank – and the impressive line-up to feed the villains here was Club Brasserie, El Vino, Augustine’s and The Boardwalk Bar and Grill.
|Sing for your supper|
Next host was Electric, again through the side streets including a stop in Oliver Plunkett Street and a song which earned the singing pirate a meal out for two!
More music at Electric where Pa Fitz entertained and where the high standard of food was maintained by Jacobs, the Ambassador, Soho and Electric itself. Still one more food stop to go and that was at the Cornstore where the providers were Amicus, Fenns Quay and Cornstore.
About five o’clock, the different crews re-united upstairs at the nearby Bodega to compare notes and the bounty – some restaurants, including Jacobs and Electric, gave out meal or wine vouchers – and listen to the band. The quiz and costumes winners were announced and the Bodega management offered everyone a free drink.
|Pat Fitz at Electric|
It was a very enjoyable day and very encouraging for the organisers. Looks like one that will be repeated. Personally, I enjoyed every moment, from that first starter of Jack McCarthy Black Pudding with Apple Sauce by Isaacs to the final Chocolate Mousse in a mini-cornet by Fenns Quay.
Tried hard to sample everything; don't think it was possible. My favourite of those that I did try out was the Chicken Balti with the French Morteau sausage by Augustine’s. Isaac’s breaded lamb chop and Electric’s cold sea bass dish were other favourites.
Something for everyone then and nice to see some chefs trying something different such as the “Gravalaix of Tuna in a Nori seaweed” by the Rising Tide and the different take on the Seafood Chowder by Greene’s who also had a terrific Beetroot Soup on their table.
Just a word of praise to Classic Drinks who not alone kept the thirsty crews well lubricated but also took the trouble to post up plenty of information about the wines and varied the offerings from restaurant to restaurant, usually matching a red with a white from the same area. In Electric for example, they had a Muriel Blanco 2009 along with a Muriel CVC Rioja 2006.
So a big thanks to Classic, to Pannier, to all the restaurants and especially to the organisers! Just picked up a message in a bottle down the quays and it reads: Let’s do it all again next year!