LitFest Announces Line-up for this Year’s Food and Drinks Festival at Ballymaloe

Christian Puglisi

Now in its fifth year, LitFest, at Ballymaloe, has become one of the highlights of the Irish food and drink calendar, and now the full line-up for this year’s food and drinks literacy festival has been revealed, including Christian Puglisi, Claudia Roden and Robin Gill .

Running from Friday 19th to Sunday 21st May, speaking on the Sunday afternoon, one of the key talks will be from EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis who will give an address called To Eat is a Political Statement.

Born in a Stalin-era Siberian gulag to deported Lithuanian civil servants, Vytenis Andriukaitis is a surgeon by profession, driven by the values of equity and solidarity. Convinced that health and food safety policies can make a significant contribution in promoting Europe’s economic recovery, his agenda includes modernising and simplifying EU food safety regulations, with a focus on ensuring all EU members work together to give people the opportunity to lead healthier, safer, better lives.

As well as celebrating the best in food and drink each year, this years’ LitFest will focus minds and thoughts on the question of responsibility – our responsibility as cooks and eaters.

Spread out over four sessions during the weekend – Saturday morning and afternoon, Sunday morning and afternoon – The Grainstore will again serve as the exciting auditorium hosting the Our Responsibility symposium, providing the stage for a stimulating series of short talks and presentations.

LitFest

Christian Puglisi and Kim Rossen, co-owners of Relae, Manfreds and Baest in Copenhagen will discuss A Cooks Responsibility, and Severine von Tsharmer-Fleming of Greenhorns, Paddy Frankel of the local organic farm Kilbrack Farm and Alice Holden of Dagenham Farm Growing Communities take to the stage to discuss The Farmer’s Life.

Ellie Kisyombe, a Direct Provision activist from Malawi, discusses her experience of Direct Provision in Ireland, David Prior, International Editor of Condé Nast Traveler talks about Responsible Travel to Sustainable Places, Joanna Blythman, investigative food journalist, asks the question Nutrition – Really? and Margot Henderson and Rory O’Connell examine The Joy of Cooking.

Following a stellar speech in the Grainstore at LitFest16, Professor Ted Dinan of University College Cork’s Microbiome Institute speaks on the fascinating topic of Diet, Stress and Mental Health, and the legendary Claudia Roden, beloved Middle Eastern cookbook writer and cultural anthropologist, discusses how Every Cuisine Tells a Story.

Karen Leibowitz, renowned cookbook co-author (Atelier Crenn, Mission Street Food) and food writer (New York Times, Lucky Peach), talks about her environmentally sustainable restaurant in San Francisco, The Perennial, and Brian McGinn, executive executive producer and director of the Emmy-winning Netflix documentary series discusses Chef’s Table on Netflix – A Phenomenon.

Dublin-born Robin Gill whose string of innovative and exciting London restaurants – The Dairy, The Manor and Paradise Garage – has made him one of the hottest chefs in London talks about respect and responsibility in Terrifying Kitchens.

Tickets for the half-day symposium sessions in The Grainstore are priced at €50 each or €90 for a full day, and a two-day weekend ticket costs €170.

The full Our Responsibility symposium programme with details and timings is available on the website at www.litfest.ie.

To get a sense of the atmosphere and the action at LitFest 2016 read TheTaste round-up HERE.

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