Taste of Offaly 2011

Last Sunday in the Tullamore Court many amazing food and drink producers came together for Taste of Offaly. This was the first Taste of Offaly event and it was organised by Midlands Radio 103. It proved to be a wonderful success with a packed house and many stall holders selling out  of their goods by the end of the day. Living in the Midlands, I have been lucky enough to sample many of these fantastic products before but I was delighted that they all met under one roof allowing me to head home with bags packed with lots of yummy ingredients.
The one common ground between  all these entrepreneurs is their love and passion for what they are producing. As I spoke with many involved they all claimed that their business's are doing fairly well, even tough it is a lot of hard work  they are seeing a good return. I would love to see more of these such days organised as it highlights the wonderful producers and local products that are available in the Midlands. I think it is so important to do our part and support local businesses, whether it is heading to the local Farmer's Market on a Saturday morning or picking up a locally made apple tart in the supermarket, we can all help to keep Irish jobs and businesses strong!

Paddy O' Connell had his Granola for sale which is delicious. This guy set up his business while still at college!

This is some of the cheese that Mossfield Organic Farm had to offer. Mossfield Organic Farm is located six miles from Birr in County Offaly at the foot of the Sleive Bloom Mountains. In 2005 Ralph Haslam began producing an organic gouda type cheese which has since gone on to win many awards. There is always some Mossfield Cheese in my fridge-it is one of my favourite cheeses as it is so tasty and versitile.


Ballyshiel is a family run business based in Ferbane, Co. Offaly. They spesialise in a luxurious range of speciality confectionery and chocolates  which are all hand made to a truly authentic family recipe. Their latest product is a speciality Hot Chocolate made with pure chocolate(52%) and not a trace of hydronated fats which are associated with many other varieties. If you like a real choclate treat this is a real luxury product!

There were also some of Tullamore's finest restaurant giving out samples of their dishes. This is Sirocco's Italian Restaurant which have won many awards and have a fantastic take away menu.

Lough Boora Farm had a beautiful display of organic fruit and veg.

Yaadgar Indian Restaurant were giving out samples of some of their delicious dishes.

This is Orla Clancy from Clanwood Farm.Until 5 years ago herself and her husband had a dry stock farm then they decided to go Organic and started selling beef direct from their farm as well as eggs, soups, hummus  and pesto. All that and a young family - truly amazing!
I still have some of Derryvilla Blueberries in my freezer from last year but I picked up a bottle of their blueberry tonic which is a wonderful, natural vitamin supplement.
Coolfin Gardens Organic Bakery had an impressive selection of fresh breads.
Yvonne Carty from the boutique catering business, Hey Pesto! gave two cookery demos and produced a three course meal using all local ingredients. I had a taste after the demo and each dish was scrumptious.
Well done to all involved who made this such a sucessful event!


Arlene said...

This sounds like a great event, Nessa! I got a jar of the Ballysheil hot chocolate as part of a Christmas present - but I haven't got round to trying it yet (shameful). This has reminded me to give it a go! x

Nessa Robins said...

Well I'm more a coffee or tea drinker but topped with some whipped cream this hot chocolate is pretty good!

cocoa and coconut said...

That looks like great fun. I love being able to learn about new foodie products

cocoa and coconut said...

Just jumping back in to say that for the carmael choc chip mudcakes on my blog, you just need chocolate chips which are frozen.

Nessa Robins said...

Thanks Brittany!That sounds good-will let you know how I get on with them!

Zoe said...

Sounds like a great event. I wish that I can be there.

Brownieville Girl said...

Just shows how much wonderful food is being produced in the country - these small producers just need some help getting their product out there.

A day like this is a great idea.

Nessa Robins said...

Absolutely!It would be marvellous if it was easier for the consumer to get their hands on these great products. I would love to see more farmer's markets, but the one here in Moate stopped because of lack of interest!