There’s so much more to Irish food and drink than just Tayto Crisps and Club Orange says Selfridges
Over 50 Irish brands are showcased. The range includes well-known household staples and talks by artisan producers.
At the launch of Taste The Emerald Isle – The Best of Irish Food and Drink Selfridges Food and Restaurants Director Bruce Langlands, accompanied by MD of Selfridges Group Paul Kelly, said:
“We think it is important to bring to life the exceptional entrepreneurial talent from overseas to our food halls; our customers are adventurers in food and what better way to experience another country’s fare than in our very own food emporium. We hope our customers enjoy the vast variety of Irish food.”
Irish chef, restaurateur, broadcaster and author Clodagh McKenna, from Cork, passionately expressed her view that Ireland is unsurpassed in terms of the quality of its produce.
The whole Irish story, and the popularity of Irish food, is key to Ireland’s great reputation for hospitality, said CEO of Tourism Ireland Niall Gibbons, who said it is one of the reasons 11 million people have visited, or will visit, Ireland during this year.
Estelle Alley, Trade Marketing Specialist of Bord Bia UK also spoke extensively about the market for Ireland’s food and drinks at home and abroad.
Among the producers present were Pauline Dunne representing Killowen Farm at the foot of the Blackstairs Mountain in Co. Wexford where they make award-winning live yogurt and Paul O’Connor who has a range of food seasoning products This Is Seaweed.
Paul was born in Dublin, raised in Cork and took holidays at Derrynane Beach, Kerry where he developed a passion for water sports.
He studied marine biology at university in Galway and Plymouth, and has a first class Master’s degree in Marine Science. He worked at the Marine Institute of The Netherlands before returning to Ireland three years ago to launch This is Seaweed.
Based in London? Make sure to call in to @Selfridges over the next couple of weeks to ‘Taste the Emerald Isle’ and see some amazing Irish food brands highlighted in their food hall. pic.twitter.com/CPen4P7QGv
— Irish Food Board (@Bordbia) August 31, 2018
Seaweeds are harvested on the shores of Donegal and packed at a food grade unit in Kimmage, Dublin.
There’s an innovation hub on the campus of University College Dublin, which is investigating the health properties of seaweeds.
Paul’s product lines include Dulse Fakes, rich in iron, vitamins and antioxidants which can be sprinkled onto mashed potatoes, eggs, salads and avocados as a flavour enhancer.
Alaria flakes are rich in calcium and magnesium and can be used to complement stirfries, soups, smoothies and even porridge.
Kelp flakes are rich in iodine, good (in moderation) for the thyroid as well as healthy skin and cognitive function, can be used in stews and broths.
.@EveningStandard food columnist @clodaghmckenna writes about “Taste the Emerald Isle” Irish food campaign in Selfridges, a celebration of Irish food which is on until October 9 – Read Here: https://t.co/0QHxYUkSsk pic.twitter.com/WvCYB8tmyO
— Tourism Ireland GB (@media_IrelandGB) September 6, 2018
Burren Smokehouse Salmon’s Marketing and Export manager Karin Funke said her company’s organically farmed salmon contains as much as ten times more Omega 3 than similar non-organic products.
There was also space for old favourites Tayto crisps, Club Orange, Barry’s Tea and Boland’s Biscuits as well as interesting various cheese and butter makers, bakers and meat curers.
Among the samples available were products by McCambridge Wholewheat Bread, Lismore Biscuits, Cooleeney cheese from Tipperary, St Tola Goats cheese from Clare. Other well-known, older, Irish brands were also well represented including Avoca, Flahavan’s porridge, PandoraBell, Solarius Tea, Lismore Biscuits, Black Castle Soda, Homespun and Boutique Bakes.
One product exclusively available in the Selfridge’s Food Hall is Guinness Cheese.
In the drinks department visitors were encouraged to enjoy a tipple of Glendalough Wild Spring Botanical Ginfrom the Wicklow Mountains and Connemara Irish Whiskey (actually distilled in the foothills of the Cooley Mountains in County Louth) is also available.
There will be a Tasting Evening between 3 -7pmThursday on 13 September in the Ground Floor Foodhall and Lower Ground Floor Wine Shop at which customers can browse the range and meet producers.
On 17 September there will be an evening with Ballymaloe Cookery School, hosted by Rory O’Connell and JR Ryall.
Booking essential. For full details of Taste The Emerald Isle, which runs until 9 October, go to: www.selfridges.com/GB/en/features/events/taste-the-emeraldisle