Discovering a Taste of Italy at Talavera, Dublin

A taste of Italy at Talavera Restaurant, Dublin. Photo: Ken McGuire/AnyGivenFood.com

A taste of Italy at Talavera Restaurant, Dublin. Photo: Ken McGuire/AnyGivenFood.com

Between gigs, work projects, a break away, a family wedding and an exhibition launch, it’s been a fairly hectic few weeks so it’s only now I sit down to write about a great night enjoyed at Talavera, the Radisson Blu St. Helen’s Italian restaurant on the Blackrock end of the Stillorgan Road in Dublin.

A few weeks ago I had been invited as part of a small group up to the hotel to hit the kitchen with chef Giancarlo Anselmi for what would be a journey across Italy from top to toe with some gastronomical hidden gems unconvered and cooked up. Continue Reading →

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Win: One Of 5 Knorr Flavour Pot Hampers

Knorr Flavour Pots

The lovely folks at Knorr have sent along not one but five flavour pot hampers to give away and that’s exactly what I’ll be doing this Friday. To get your name in the hat, simply leave a comment below this post – no tricky questions involved!

You may have seen the ads on the TV, you may have already tried them, but if you haven’t, the Knorr Flavour Pots are designed to add flavour to any meal and while each pot pack comes loaded with recipes and ideas on how to use them, but for the pots that I’ve used in cooking myself, there’s no science needed – just fire the contents of the pot in, stir, and serve. Continue Reading →

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Win: Meet The Chocolate Makers Tickets

Meet The Chocolate Makers

Meet The Chocolate Makers

Fancy meeting a trio of chocolate producers in Kilkenny this weekend?

The final Biabeag Meet The Makers event takes place in its home at Highbank Orchards this coming Saturday evening, 6.30pm.

Regular readers of Any Given Food will know I’ve had a hand in covering all of the events this year and this weekend will be no different, but what better way to send the year home than with some serious talk and tastings around all things chocolate.

Who’s Speaking?

One of the gems on the chocolate front in Kilkenny is Mary Teehan of The Truffle Fairy. Truffles, dark chocolates and a definite contender for Best Brownies In Ireland (may be somewhat of a fictional award I’m adding here), Truffle Fairy can be found in Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny and most days at the Thursday farmers market in Kilkenny.

Wexford-based Bean and Goose have some solid branding and single-origin bars behind them and they’re only off and running not much more than a year. Co-founder Karen Keane will be in the hot seat / couch on The Green Room stage.

Adding international flavour to the night is Blyss Chocolate’s Alyssa Jade McDonald who I’ve been introduced to via Keith and know online simply as BlyssLyss. As a chocolate maker, Alyssa has a serious passion for chocolate and story to match, sharing hers from bean to bar, plantation to mouth.

Get Your Tickets

You can either buy your tickets here for the wallet-friendly price of €8, or hop over to So Kilkenny (my way of introducing you to my next project) and leave a comment on the event post telling me what your favourite chocolate is. If you do that before 6pm Thursday, it could be your name out of the hat for a pair of tickets for the final night of the year. These events have been sold out, jam packed and thanks to the limited capacity and craic had, they’re literally ‘hot’ tickets.

For more, see biabeag.com.

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Wholemeal Five Berry Liqueur Muffins

Wholemeal Five Berry Muffins with a splash of blackcurrant liqueur. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

Wholemeal Five Berry Muffins with a splash of blackcurrant liqueur. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

I’ve made this recipe previously but going back through the bulging drafts box realise I never got around to publishing it the first time, so here goes…

Over the summer, I was sent two bottles of liqueur from Ruby Blue Liqueur in Northern Ireland.

Owned and produced by Hughes Craft Distillery, a small batch producer based in Co. Antrim, the Ruby Blue liqueurs are produced using only real fruit, Irish grain spirit and a little Irish mystic, ultimately creating what they regard as the cleanest, most natural, berry and spiced liqueurs on the market. Continue Reading →

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39 Photos from Savour Kilkenny Food Market day 1

Rory O'Connell of Ballymaloe Cookery School prepares to delve into some squid at Savour Kilkenny earlier today. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

Rory O’Connell of Ballymaloe Cookery School prepares to delve into some squid at Savour Kilkenny earlier today. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

For a lover of all things food, there’s nothing quite like a day at the food market as part of Savour Kilkenny. It has changed and developed over the past few years into a pure hive of activity – talks, tastings, demos, cook-offs, debates, and all backed by a village-load of traders and food producers who are cooking from the early hours of the morning. Continue Reading →

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Photos: Food Art, Fashion and the opening of Savour Kilkenny 2014

Savour Kilkenny Food Festival 2014 opening at National Craft Gallery, Kilkenny. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

Savour Kilkenny Food Festival 2014 opening at National Craft Gallery, Kilkenny. Photo: Ken McGuire/Any Given Food

The 8th annual Savour Kilkenny Festival of Food opened tonight at the National Craft Gallery. With my So Kilkenny hat on I was there to pick up some shots of the launch and check out the Food Art Competition which included some great head pieces made from milk cartons and other recycled food packaging. Continue Reading →

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Photos: Pintxos night at The Salt Yard, Kilkenny

Pintxos at The Salt Yard, Kilkenny. Photo: Ken McGuire/AnyGivenFood.com

Pintxos at The Salt Yard, Kilkenny. Photo: Ken McGuire/AnyGivenFood.com

Open around four months at this stage under the watchful eye of proprietor Padraig Enright, The Salt Yard is the only restaunt of its kind in Kilkenny specialising in Spanish-driven cuisine presenting a fine fusion of Spanish and Irish ingredients across a huge tapas, pintxos and platos menu. We were in house on the opening night for what turned out to be a fantastic meal (one that kept us stuffed for about two days given the amount we had consumed) but last night I was back in the restaurant myself for The Salt Yard’s VIP Pintxos night. Continue Reading →

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Food Packaging: Avonmore introduce ‘One Twist’ cartons to the market

Avonmore launch new milk cartons

Kyle Moloney (aged 5) Kate Cepeda (aged 6) and Matthew MacDougald (aged 8) at the launch of Avonmore’s new milk carton.Pic: Marc O’Sullivan

Avonmore, only around the corner from the office here, have followed on from their launch in recent months of their Protein Milk by launching a new ‘Elopak’ milk carton for the Irish market. The logic behind the cartons is in making them easier to open, with a better pour and better flatpacking when it comes to recycling. As a daily milk drinker, admittedly I’m not a fan of the small caps on top of the current cartons (especially when you had the cap, then the plastic pull on the inside). Continue Reading →

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Spice Up Your Life with Savour Kilkenny

One of my favourite times of year in Kilkenny is that of the October Bank Holiday weekend which this year brings about the 8th Savour Kilkenny food festival.

The crew behind the festival have got their dancing shoes on for the latest piece of festival promo. Fair play to Edward Hayden, Siobhan, Chris, Aidan and all involved.

For more on this year’s festival and to book tickets to any of the ticket-needing events, check out SavourKilkenny.com.

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