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William Barry's Food Journal: The North West

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

Straying far from his beloved West Cork, and from his adopted home town of Dublin, William Barry gets up close with the food culture of the North West...

Visited Hargadons pub for the first time last night, the first beer tap I saw when I walked in was from from 8 Degrees Brewing, from Mitchelstown, so I was able to have lovely draft pints of Howling Gale Ale.

Visited Dicey Riellys Pub and Off Licence in Ballyshannnon Co. Donegal and had a pint of their brew - Donegal Blonde - from their sister company, the Donegal Brewing Company. I'm going to go back and meet the owner and spend some time seeing what they do.

I'm having my Christmas party in An Port Mor, and I'm looking forward to hopefully meeting Frankie Mallon, and visiting the famous Matt Mollys pub who, I've heard, are doing good food and joining the craft beer wave.

Had my first night out for a meal in Sligo on Friday, in a restaurant called Eala Bhan in the town. Food was very good, few misteps with service but a solid offering all the same.

A place I go weekly is Shells Cafe in Strandhill, its really excellent. They have made a lovely video (see our community video page...

The Glasshouse Hotel is the place to be seen and stay in Sligo, their restaurant is called The Kitchen, where the chef is Alan Fitzmaurice.

Bar One, Castlebar- this owner is Mark Cadden, a brother of Paul Cadden of Saba fame. I had a really hearty lunch here, and it's a really good menu for the provincial town.

Connemara Smokehouse
Located – literally – on the edge of the earth, I drove all through Connemara yesterday and called in to get some bits for Xmas, and met Graham Roberts on his way out the gate. One of his staff showed me around very quickly - the staff were singing and dancing around as they worked, it was a touch Willy Wonka. Great place.

William Barry

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