Knockranny House Hotel
Executive chef Seamus Commons is such a towering figure in County Mayo’s food culture that the focus on Knockranny House Hotel inevitably falls on his work in the La Fougerre restaurant.
But if we do that, we overlook Mr Common’s work in fashioning the menus for the Brehon bar, and that is a mistake, because his work for the bar is simpler, but just as dynamic, as his restaurant creations: Galway's Goat farm cheese with heritage beetroots and scallion ash; Clew Bay chowder with Knockranny soda bread; Kelly’s lamb sausages with mash and onion gravy; buttermilk chicken with tzatziki; the signature Brehon burger with triple-cooked chips.
This is lovely, precise, satisfying cooking, and as you would expect, the children’s menu is thoughtful and intelligent.
In La Fougere, meantime, Mr Commons offers a culinary bedazzlement that is uniquely his own: pheasant with smoked black pudding and parsnip; chicken with charred celeriac; pigeon with sage mouseline; sirloin with smoked cheese fondant; pear parfait with compressed apple. In particular, his expertise with game cooking is unmatched, whilst sommelier Nicholas Faujours matches Mr Common’s skill with his superlative, beautifully notated wine list, which manages to offer excellent value whilst also featuring superstar wines at feisty prices.
With luxe rooms and an amazing spa, Knockranny is an ocean liner hotel: you walk through the doors, set sail, and leave the normal world far behind.
More along the Mayo coast
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