Ronan Byrne, The Friendly Farmer being presented with his 2012 Euro-Toques Food Award by chef JP McMahon and Aidan Corcoran of EirGird. Ronan is one of the producers we will visit on this outing, while JP McMahon will feature his produce on the menu for the Euro-Toques dinner he will host on the day
Euro-Toques Outing: GALWAY
Wed 20 MARCH
PRODUCER VISITS & LOCAL FARM (& CRAFT BEER!) DINNER
Join us on Wednesday 20th March as we visit the ‘Fields of Athenry’ to meet 2 remarkable food producers; one preserving a tradition and skill that has almost died out and the other reviving it.
Then make your way into the city to stop into one of Galway’s (indeed Ireland’s) food icons and finish up with a casual early evening supper with Euro-Toques chef JP McMahon (and some local beer!)
WEDNESDAY 20 MARCH – ITINERARY
10am Arrive at Athenry Town Park at the Church Car Park, near the Train Station, our first stop is just across the road.
(If you arrive early, you can grab a coffee at The Nook further along the same street on the opposite side or at the Old Barracks on Cross St)
Visit to BRADY’S BUTCHERS
Brady’s is a family butchers for several generations and still have their own on-site abattoir killing beef & lamb, all sourced from local farms around Athenry.
We will be visiting the abattoir to observe the Beef & Lamb kill and will meet with Richie Brady who now runs the business. Richie was one of the last generation in Ireland to have formal butchery training which included slaughtering skills.
Following what is believed by many to have been the systematic closure of small abattoirs by the Irish authorities throughout the 1990s, only a handful of slaughterhouses remain in operation in County Galway, the majority of these in the east of the county. A very small number of these also have a butcher shops and in some cases their own farm, providing total traceability and real food provenance to the consumer. The tenacity of those who have continued against the odds to carry out this practice is to be greatly admired.
12.30 approx Drive to Knockbrack – 5 mins from Athenry
Visit to THE FRIENDLY FARMER
A short drive into the countryside at Knockbrack, Athenry we find Ronan Byrne (aka The Friendly Farmer) at work on his picturesque farm with the little yellow cottage which once belonged to his grandparents. The Friendly Farmer’s mainstay is Pasture Reared Chickens, along with Geese, Turkeys and Ducks seasonally, but he also has a few free ranging saddleback pigs and a small herd of beef cattle.
Last year Ronan won a Euro-Toques Food Award for his excellent quality chicken. But something very special has happened on the Friendly Farm in the meantime – in December Ronan opened his own on –farm abattoir meaning all of his Turkeys, Geese & Ducks for Christmas were killed and processed on farm and he now kills his chickens weekly right across the field from where they were reared.
We will meet Ronan (he really is very friendly!), get a tour of the farm and an understanding of his farm practices, and observe how the chickens are killed on-farm.
2.30pm approx. Travel to Galway City
You may a parking space at the Cathedral car park, which will put you roughly half way between our 2 locations or park around Newtownsmith or Market street close to Sheridans and then move the car closer to Massimo later or leave it there and stroll down via Dominick St.
Visit to SHERIDANS CHEESEMONGERS
On Churchyard St in Galway (beside St. Nicholas Church) you will find Galway food institution Sheridans Cheesemongers and above it Sheridans Wine Bar. Inside you will meet Seamus Sheridan, just as much of an institution as the shop itself perhaps!
After a browse in the shop, Seamus will take us through a tasting of some local West of Ireland cheeses (perhaps with a sup of wine to accompany) and a general chat about food in Galway and the history of Sheridans. The perfect thing to whet our appetites for a lovely Euro-Toques meal.
4pm approx. Make your way, via Dominick st, to MASSIMO, William Street
LOCAL FARM & CRAFT BEER DINNER – Eat @ MASSIMO
This part of town has become known as the West End and is famous for its bars and more recently its restaurants, thanks in no small part to the efforts of JP McMahon, who first opened Cava Restaurant on Dominick St 5 years ago, followed by the Michelin starred Aniar next door and later started doing the food at well-known pub Massimo further down the town. Since then a slew of new restaurants have opened in the area.
For this occasion, JP will be sourcing produce from Brady’s and The Friendly Farmer, as well as other regular local suppliers such as Castlemine Farm in Roscommon and Green Earth Organics in Galway to bring us a 3 course menu based on local farm produce. All of this will be lovingly washed down with beers from the Galway Hooker Brewery accompanied by chat from the brewers themselves.
We are making it an early evening casual supper, so that you can get on the road home again or set yourself up for a good night in Galway (and sure there’s always craic to be had in Galway!).
Hope you can join us for this interesting day out!!
Cost per person – to include Tasting at Sheridans and Dinner at Massimos – €30
Attendance at Athenry visits only – Free of Charge
Numbers for visits will be limited. Booking is essential.
Call 01 6779995/085 8520760, Text 085 8520760 or Email email@example.com
Please note: This is an industry event and not open to the general public