WITH everything from a blissful barbecue in the Burren, to seaweed tastings by the coast, the return of the Clare Food & Drink Fleadh provides an ideal showcase for all that is good about the food and drink scene in The Banner county.
County Clare is well renowned as one of the best in Ireland when it comes to producing high-quality artisan food and drink, sparking the establishment of the Clare Food & Drink Fleadh in 2019.
This year’s event from July 15 to 17 will feature a wide variety of events catering for foodies and drinks connoisseurs of all tastes.
Clare Food & Drink Fleadh co-ordinator Margaret O’Brien said, “It’s great to be back after the disruption of recent years.
“We chose July 15 to 17 as our festival dates for 2022 to complement Skoda Ring of Clare cycle event, which is set to attract thousands of participants, their partners and families to Clare.”
Clare Food & Drink Festival Chair, Maeve Eustace, a local artisan producer (Western Herd Brewing Company) explained, “Skoda Ring of Clare attracts a sizeable audience looking for experiences to enjoy in Ennis and throughout county Clare over the weekend of July 15 – 17.
“It is our pleasure at Clare Food & Drink Fleadh to programme a variety of things to do, places to visit, excellent local food to savour, and of course it wouldn’t be Clare without great music too.”
Margaret added, “We have put together a fun programme of events to highlight the quality and uniqueness of the food and drink produced in County Clare.
“We picked up where we left off pre-Covid with the return of our ‘Meet the Makers’ series of events available on Friday July 15 and Saturday July 16.
“We have exciting locally inspired food offerings including ‘Clare Plates’ from Ennis based award-winning café Sweet ‘n’ Green, which will open its doors for evening meals on Friday July 16 and Saturday July 17 with a menu of five stunning ‘Clare Plates’ featuring locally produced food prepared by Chef Frank Landy.
“Other food delights will include ‘Pizza in the Courtyard’ outside Temple Gate Hotel (July 15 and 16 from 12 noon – 8pm) with a selection of pizzas featuring Clare-produced toppings.
“Brogan’s have added a special ‘Clare Burger’ to their menu, available across the weekend while the Town Hall Bistro (Old Ground Hotel) will offer a ‘Banner Brunch’ on Sunday July 17, featuring the best of Clare produce including the famous ‘Burren Butcher’ burgers.
“Add to this, the return of Clare Food & Drink Fleadh’s ‘Clare-inspired Cocktail Competition’, with participation from bars throughout Ennis. This was one of the festival highlights in the past and no doubt will be again this year.”
Western Herd Brewing has created a limited-edition brew, ’Soulvation Coffee White Stout’ for the festival, featuring Burren-based Anam Coffee, using ethically sourced coffee beans.
This special festival stout is available exclusively on tap from Lucas Bar, Parnell Street, launching on Friday July 15 and available while stocks last.
Other highlights on Clare Food & Drink Fleadh programme for 2022 include an Artisan Market in the Market Building Ennis on Saturday July 16 (10am to 2pm). That will be followed by the festival’s highlight community event – Clare Junior Bake-off, open to three distinct age categories.
As in the past, Clare Food & Drink Fleadh offers a satellite programme of events right across the county.
These can be booked directly on Eventbrite under Clare Food & Drink Fleadh. They include: Meet the Goats Sample Cheese! St Tola Goat Cheese Farm, Inagh. 2.30pm – 4pm, July 15; Chapel Gate Whiskey Company, Gowerhass, Cooraclare 7pm – 8pm, July 15; Burren Brewery, Roadside Tavern, Lisdoonvarna 12 noon – 1pm, July 16; Burren Smokehouse, Lisdooonvarna, 1pm – 2pm, July 16; Seaweed Talk and Taste with Oonagh O’Dwyer at Lahinch Prom, 2pm – 3.30pm, July 16; Behind the Scenes at the Chocolate Factory! Wilde Irish Chocolate, Tuamgraney, 3.30pm – 4.30pm, July 16; Burren Farm Experience.
A sunset hike through stunning Burren landscape, followed by a BBQ . From 5pm, Saturday July 16. On Sunday there will be a Walk with Burren Farm Experience at Kylecreen, Tubber.
This will involve a hike through a working farm with Cathal O’Rourke, fifth generation Burren Farmer.
Light refreshments served at the end of the walk. This is a family friendly event starting at 11am.
Food and drink aren’t just the stars of the festival, with great music also planned for across the weekend.
Socks in the Frying Pan will play a homecoming gig at glór, Ennis, 8pm, Friday, July 15.
The organisers of Clare Food & Drink Fleadh have linked up with award-winning Meere’s Pork Products to provide a take-home breakfast for everyone in the audience. There will also be free live music at Considine’s, Knox’s, Cruises, Preacher’s, Nora Culligan’s and The Poet’s Corner.
For full details check out the fleadh’s events tab. Links to bookings are included in the Events section of Clare Food & Drink website.
Clare Food & Drink Fleadh is supported by: Ennis Chamber, Clare County Council and Failte Ireland.