For the first time ever, Lisdoonvarna has entered the competition that searches for the Foodie Town of Ireland. That our town entered at all might surprise a lot of people as Lisdoonvarna is mostly known for the Matchmaking Festival. Incorrectly so!
It might surprise even more that Lisdoonvarna has been shortlisted among 9 other top finalists. But when looking closer, it is actually surprising that the town had not been entered before now into the competition.
More and more food producers, gastro pubs and restaurants have opened shop in the area of Lisdoonvarna. As the Foodie Town website states, "The ‘Foodie Town of Ireland’ award will recognise a destination that actively promotes itself through events like food festivals, gourmet trails or farmers’ markets as well as great dining experiences." Well, that's Lisdoonvarna and the Burren!
They go on saying that "The winning town will have established a local producer/supplier network which is utilised and promoted by local businesses. Plans for future growth and investment into the food and hospitality industry at a local level will also be taken into consideration. Education, training, development and employment will be key components of the ultimate foodie destination."
On an educational (and fun) level, there is the Burren Food Trail which was created by members of the Burren Ecotourism Network. These small businesses have perceived and organised events which will take place each Monday over the summer - the Burren Food Trail Mondays. The Burren Ecotourism Network accounts for the - well, for networking factor that was called for. For example, places like the Burren Smokehouse would prefer going local for the sourcing of food and produce, as would restaurants and gastro pubs in the area.
Please get voting and make sure that Lisdoonvarna gets the official recognition it deserves! Click here to vote.
Why give your vote for Lisdoonvarna & The Burren? Just a few great reasons!
- The Burren Food Trail, built on the Burren Food Trail Customer Promise and featuring a Burren Food Trail Signature Dish in each restaurant. Both copied but so far not equalled! A trail with as many producers and growers, as restaurants and eateries - all accessible to visitors! A trail that has shown social, economic and environmental return for the visitor and the area.
- The highly innovative Burren Food Trail Mondays – an amazing 30 food-themed activity events every single Monday from Easter to Halloween!
- International recognition for the innovative work of the Burren Ecotourism Network in creating new destination visitor experiences - the Burren Food Trail is cited as the flagship example of this. (E.G. WTTC Tourism for Tomorrow Awards)
- 25 members who have all attained independently verified standards in sustainable tourism and sustainable food.
- The flagship Burren Slow Food Festival - the longest running slow food festival in Ireland, now in it's 9th year.
- The Burren Food Fayre, a festival for locals by locals - celebrating our own unique terroir and food culture.
- The Burren Masterchef and Burren Junior Masterchef Competition - encouraging the use of wild, seasonal, foraged and local foods to produce award-winning culinary creations.
- The first ever pub in Ireland to win the Michelin Bib Gourmand, Wild Honey Inn.
- Georgina Campbell's best breakfast in Munster at Sheedy's Hotel & Restaurant
- 2 chef winners of AA Rosettes for Food - Sheedy's & Wild Honey Inn
- The winner of three 3-star Gold Medals at the Great Taste Awards 2013 - Burren Smokehouse
- RAI Best Gastro Pub in Munster 2012 - Kieran's Kitchen at The Roadside Tavern
- The Best Brew around - the Burren Microbrewery
All within a few minutes stroll of each other and within a town of less than 700 people!
Lisdoonvarna and the Burren are showing, through food, how sustainable tourism really works for the benefit of the visitor and the area.