Sligo Restaurateur Anthony Gray has claimed that “Irish food is on the crest of a Wild Atlantic Wave” and that it is better now than it has ever been in the past.
The chairman of the Sligo Food Trail and ex-president of the Restaurant Association of Ireland stated: “Irish food is on the crest of a Wild Atlantic Wave at the moment. It’s time to shout Ireland’s food story from the rooftops and make sure the whole world knows about it.”
Gray, who owns two restaurants in Sligo Town, Hooked and Eala Bhán, also said that Ireland has a tendancy to “hide our light under a bushel” and doesn’t want Irish food to remain a well kept secret:
“The days of limited ingredients and cremated meat are gone. Today, chefs have a choice of outstanding produce and the skill to transform it into consistently excellent dishes. It’s time to hold our heads high, declare provenance and make big claims for Irish food.”
Gray’s two restaurants, Hooked and Eala Bhán, focus on utilising the best and freshest quality local ingredients, all of which can be easily sourced.
He believes that if we don’t share the story of our food with visitors from around the world, then we can’t expect to reap any benefits from it:
“I see my customer’s eyes light up when I tell them that I was out at the market buying edible flowers or where my cheese is from and who makes my bread.
“If we all do that we are on the right track to showcase, not just Sligo, but Ireland as a food destination. Ireland is one of the finest food destinations in the world, we just have to tell our story better.”
For more information about the Sligo Food Trail, visit www.sligofoodtrail.ie.