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Taoiseach honours Ireland’s Good Food and ‘sells Santa’ for charity

Enda Kenny was in fine form at the Good Food Ireland awards earlier in the week…

The Taoiseach with representatives of ‎Hastings Hotels, winner of Newcomer of the Year at the Good Food Ireland awards on Tuesday.
The Taoiseach with representatives of ‎Hastings Hotels, winner of Newcomer of the Year at the Good Food Ireland awards on Tuesday.
Image: Facebook

THE TAOISEACH ENDA Kenny honoured Ireland’s food tourism industry at the Good Food Ireland awards earlier this week as well as doing his bit for the charity St Vincent de Paul.

Kenny was at the Shelbourne Hotel on Tuesday night to present awards to the restaurants and businesses who are committed to using local produce to sustain farmers, fishermen and food producers across the country.

The ceremony was attended by over 300 people including hoteliers, restaurateurs, farmers, food producers and fishermen.

Good Food Ireland managing director Margaret Jeffares praised the commitment of restaurants and cafés to purchasing Irish produce.

“It is only through serving our customers and international visitors to Ireland the food of our country and by telling them the story behind it that we can become a unique food tourism destination,” she said.

Speaking to TheJournal.ie Jeffares also revealed that the Taoiseach was in great form on the night and told of how she presented him with a chocolate Santa that was created by the chocolatiers at the Chocolate Garden in Carlow.

The Taoiseach subsequently decided he would auction it off for charity and took it upon himself to act as auctioneer, raising €1,000 for St Vincent de Paul in the process.

“It was a lovely, kind gesture by the Taoiseach and totally off-the-cuff,” Jeffares said.

As for the awards themselves, the Good Food Ireland Supreme Award went to Source Sligo, a restaurant and cookery school in Sligo.

Other winners included Glenilen Farm in Cork for Best Food Producer, The Cliff House Hotel in Waterford for Best Culinary Hotel, and The Chocolate Garden, Co Carlow for the “Come and See” Food Producer award.

Also presented with awards were the Sheelin Tea Shop in Enniskillen for Best Café, Chapter One in Dublin for Best Restaurant, The Oarsman in Carrick-on-Shannon Best Food Pub, Rua in Castlebar for Best Local Food Shop and the Aldridge Lodge in Duncannon, Co Wexford for Best Culinary Haven.

A full list of the award winners and pictures from the night can be found here.

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