Across the Causeway Coast and Glens there’s a lot of growing, catching, making and creating going on.
The destination is home to a wealth of locally produced food and drink which are the core ingredients for a new celebration event taking place this month from November 10th–18th.
Taste Causeway is a nine day foodie festival which aims to showcase the region’s best eating experiences. It includes speciality menus, theme evenings, markets and tours - so there’s a food event to suit everyone.
The Lime Tree Restaurant in Limavady is marking its participation with a Danny Boy inspired menu which features collaborations with local producers across five very tempting courses.
Commenting on his involvement with Taste Causeway, proprietor Stanley Matthews said: “It’s about creating momentum between local producers and our good food and sharing that with the public. What we have here is just too good to miss. People are more switched on now about local produce and we see more chefs getting behind it and local shops selling it so there is a demand there for it.”
As well as enjoying Stanley’s bespoke menu, diners at his Taste Causeway event will hear directly from local producers who will share the story behind their products. Among those taking part are Leona Kane, who produces Broighter Gold Rapeseed Oil not far from Limavady on the family farm.
The raw product is grown in fields in the shadow of Binevenagh before it is transformed into an award winning range of oils which have a multitude of uses in the kitchen and the dining room.
Reflecting on the importance of Taste Causeway, Leona said: “I would encourage everyone to embrace this event and enjoy everything which we have sitting on our doorstep. Get into that whole local experience, enjoy knowing who created your food from start to finish and learn about local produce. There can be no better story to tell around the kitchen table than where our food comes from.”
Corndale Farm is another name which can be found on Stanley’s menu. Established in 2012 by Alastair Crown, it produces a range of salami and chorizo products which have previously been voted the best in Ireland by the Irish Food Guide. With a field to fork approach, Alastair is committed to ensuring that his customers know the origins of their food.
Looking ahead to Taste Causeway, he said: “It’s a great way of championing the local produce which this area has to offer. We have everything from oils to cheese, charcuterie, great bread makers, beers makers – it’s fantastic. There’s no other region in Northern Ireland producing the kind of food that we have here.”
With a coastline stretching for miles, there’ll be lots of opportunities to enjoy the best of fresh fish dishes as well. This includes a ‘Taste Causeway’ seafood platter at The Anchor in Portstewart and a five-course feast at The Crannagh with Bann Eels and salmon from North Coast Smokehouse. At the Marine Hotel in Ballycastle enjoy an exclusive Taste of the Sea menu prepared by Head Chef Pol Shields served with specially selected pairing wines.
Diners will also be able to enjoy some international influences with Harry’s in Cushendall hosting a Miniature/Pintxo experience in collaboration with Slemish Market Garden. This promises to be a unique dining event as Chefs Rob Curley and Gorka Arrieta come together to showcase tastes from here and the Basque Country of Northern Spain.
In Coleraine, Truva’s Turkish Night will use local produce to bring a taste of the Middle East to the Causeway Coast with goat from Broughgammon among the ingredients.
Alongside fabulous eating experiences, the celebration includes a variety of cookery classes where you can try your hand at making your own bread, learn how to fillet a fish or create impressive French-style canapes. Or why not enjoy a food tour in Portrush, Bushmills or Ballycastle which promise a unique way to enjoy a variety of local produce dishes served up in some of the area’s best eateries.
If that’s not enough, Taste Causeway coincides with Atlantic Sessions, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council’s award winning music festival. It runs from November 15th – 18th in venues across Portrush and Portstewart. Enjoy free music trails, new collaborations, exclusively curated premieres, plus special launch events from established artists. With great music and great food there has never been a better time to visit!
To view the full Taste Causeway programme or for other ideas on what to do and where to stay go to www.visitcausewaycoastandglens.com or follow Visit Causeway on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.