HERE are some delicious food and drinks events you might enjoy, while over here on this post I’m following up on my column in the Irish Examiner about last week’s New Zealand Wine Fair with further Kiwi whites I’d recommend.
█ Feb 10 to 12 — Cask-conditioned beers in Cork
♦ The Franciscan Well Brewery & Brew Pub, North Mall, Cork (021-4393434; www.franciscanwellbrewery.com) is open daily at 3pm, closing at 11.30pm daily except Saturdays (12.30am) and Sundays (11 pm).
IF you’re involved in public beer or wine events anywhere in Ireland, and would like them flagged here and in the Irish Examiner, please email me the info. My contact details are here. Don’t bother with pictures, PDFs etc — just the basic info, ideally three weeks in advance to get in ahead of print deadlines.
█ Feb 14 — Love and romance in the English Market, Cork
St Valentine’s night is all about dinner à deux whether at home or, unburdened by kitchen anxiety, in a restaurant. And here’s to more of that.
But many people feel excluded by the whole two-by-two thing. Whether you’re in the tentative connected-but-uncommitted early days, or settled into a well-worn relationship, it can all be a bit much. Let alone the many people single by chance or by choice. Plus, many couples grabbing a rare night out (I’m particularly thinking of parents here) who’d love to dine out together — but in the company of their friends.
Which is where Threshold and the Farm Gate Café come in.
They’re hosting a fundraising dinner and celebration from 7pm on Valentine’s night that ought to appeal to everyone — couples, singles or whatever. The award-winning restaurant will serve up top-class food, drinks (the latter supported by Irish Distillers, whose wine list included the likes of Brancott Estate and Campo Viejo) and entertainment — and all for only €50 a head.
Threshold is a national organisation providing free, confidential advice and advocacy in relation to housing and tenancy. The registered charity also campaigns on the issues, and — as a glance at their site at www.threshold.ie will tell you — is an invaluable source of practical, sensible information
The restaurant is of course normally open only 9am to 5pm during the market’s working day, so it’s a rare opportunity to dine at nighttime in the atmospheric market building. See corkenglishmarket.ie for more about the restaurant and the market. Couples will be accommodated of course but much of the seating will be at shared big tables. It sounds like a lot of fun and, who knows, new romance could bloom on the night!
For tickets, drop into the Farm Gate, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call Threshold on 021-4278848.
█ Feb 14 – Valentine’s night at On The Pig’s Back Café
On The Pig’s Back, market neighbours of the Farm Gate – are decamping to their Douglas venue for a night of love and – intriguingly – murder. Greenshine (Noel Shine, Mary Greene and Ellie Shine) will present a night of love songs and murder ballads on Tues Feb 14 from 8pm at On the Pig’s Back Café Deli in St Patrick’s Mills, Douglas, Cork. Booking (€10 from either of the On The Pig’s Back outlets or on 021-4617832) is essential. And a menu of bubbles, wines & chocolates is available too.
█ Feb 17 – Big tasting at ely, Dublin
Try out more than 80 wines in a big open tasting at ely bar & brasserie, IFSC. Tickets are €20 and choose either 6pm or 8pm.
█ Feb 23 — Wine dinner at Hayfield Manor, Cork
The next date in the dairy for Hayfield Manor Wine Society is on Thursday, February 23 with a dinner paired with wines from the Santa Sofia winery in Italy. Executive chef Graeme Campbell and sommelière Sandra Biret-Crowley have matched each of the five courses to five wines. It begins with aperitifs at 7pm, and dinner is served from 7.30pm. The event costs €79 per person. Book on 021-4845909 or at email@example.com.
█ Feb 29 to Mar 2 — Pop-up dinners in three cities
From Vineyards Direct is hosting a series of ‘pop-up ‘ dinners (that is, in locations that aren’t normally restaurants) featuring the wines of the Castello di Potentino vineyards at Monte Amiata near Brunello in Tuscany as follows.
February 29 – Cork City Gaol – 6.30pm to 9pm
March 1 – Limerick City Gallery – 6.30pm to 9pm
March 2 – Dublin, Science Gallery – 6.30pm to 8pm
The latter event is part of the Science Gallery’s Edible exhibit which apparently examines relationships among food, wine, science and nature. Ooh. Interesting. All three events sound attractive especially (to me) the Science Gallery bit. I’ll be looking into this and popping more information up here as I get it.
█ March 5 — Rhone wine tasting and dinner in Cork
On Monday, March 5 from 7.30pm, the Wine Store – aka Simon and Emma Tyrrell – is taking a road trip to Cork’s L’Atitude 51, the new wine café in what used to be The Lobby, as outlined at the top of this page.
There are two parts to the evening. First, Simon will talk guests through six wines (mainly from the Rhône Valley) accompanied by tasty morsels of tapas from L’Atitude’s kitchen. €15 per person. There will also be the option to stay on for a set menu dinner for just another €15. To book a place for either or both, call L’Atitude 51 on 021 2390219. And see http://thewinestoreireland.wordpress.com/ for more details. ♦