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Sally's blog

All the best places to eat, shop and stay in Ireland. A local guide to local places.

Gill Carroll is rewriting the book in 37 West, Galway

If you walked Sally, PJ and John McKenna into a restaurant and handed them the menu, you could lay a bet that the three things they would never order would be a chicken melt, a burger, and chicken skewers.
Yet there the three of them are, in Gill Carroll's 37 West in Galway, and they have just ordered the chicken melt with jalapeños, the caveman burger, and the chicken skewers with peppers and onions.

Sharon Noonan applauds the sourcing in The Strand Hotel, Limerick

Whoever said you should never work with animals never got the attention of Tom Flavin.  The executive chef of Limerick's Strand Hotel, together with his white welly boot clad team, stars alongside a host of different animals in the hotel’s own movie, “Limerick Strand Our Food Story.”

For nearly 4 minutes Tom’s dulcet tones provide a relaxing voiceover to scenes shot within a 20 mile radius of Limerick city, as the group visits suppliers of ingredients that feature on the menu at the Strand Hotel.  

Our video is selected for screening at the Corona Fastnet Short Film Festival

We're delighted that our documentary short film Feeding The Hungry Hills has been selected for screening in the Corona Fastnet Short Film Festival. They have even given us a laurel for our film poster. So we thought we'd better design a film poster. You can see the film in the Adelphi Cinema, Village Hall, Schull on Saturday 23rd May at 10am.

It's just another excuse to go to this fabulous film festival where the whole town becomes a cinema. More details here.


100 Best Apps published

We have been delighted all week by the response to our three new Apps. Here are some of the comments and tweets:

"Are you always trying to figure out where the best places to eat, drink, shop & stay in Ireland? Download @McKennasGuides new Apps #100Best" @CulinarianPress

"Congratulations to All those who made the #100Best list this year in @McKennasGuides. What an achievement!" @barryathartes

"@McKennasGuides @ConorC #apptastic literally everything you need to know at the touch of a button #greatidea" @LisaReganPR

Food Carts Alumni

One of the comments this week, about Eat 2015, our new 100 Best Restaurant App, that really made us laugh, was a Facebook status saying the writer was going to open a new takeaway in order to get into the #100Best and call it Bacon Bad.

With a name like that, we'd certainly give it a second glance, but for a takeaway, a food cart, a hostel, or a shack to get into the #100Best, you need to be more than a little bit special.

Miyazaki, Evergreen Street, Cork

In his short book, In Praise of Shadows, the novelist Junichiro Tanizaki writes that “It has been said of Japanese food that it is a cuisine to be looked at rather than eaten. I would go further and say that it is to be meditated upon, a kind of silent music...”.
In Miyazaki, a small, handsome room with half-a-dozen stools on Evergreen Street in Cork, Takashi Miyazaki is cooking Japanese food that summons the silent music. His cooking is beautiful to look at, and worthy of profound meditation. Above all, however, it is food to be eaten.

The China Sichuan, Sandyford, Co Dublin

Nothing can resist change. Taking the Luas out to Sandyford to have dinner at the China Sichuan, there was not a single person reading a printed newspaper or magazine or book in the two carriages I could see.
But, then, as people began to leave the train, I spotted a European man reading a tiny, missal-like tome. And what book was he reading?
Of course: it was Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs. The tedious and deflating personal story of the man who switched the world to screens.
More change was ahead of us.

Hop-House, Parnell Street, Dublin

The thing about Hop-House is that you keep looking over your shoulder whenever you come here.
Somewhere in here, you say to yourself, maybe from behind the bar, maybe from behind the dessert counter, you just know that Harrison Ford is waiting to burst out and finish that missing scene from Bladerunner. And that girl over there, why she looks a bit like Daryl Hannah...
That's the thing about Hop-House. Imagine a future where the Irish pub is gridded with a Korean eating house, and it will be this madcap, unique place.


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