Taste of Dublin: everything you need to know - and the Top 10 things to try

The food festival returns to the capital from Thursday until Sunday. We’ve tried the menu to bring you the tastiest treats

Michael Onalimi  with is Flavour Safari spicy pasta sauces, which he makes in Co Laois

Michael Onalimi with is Flavour Safari spicy pasta sauces, which he makes in Co Laois

 

Taste of Dublin returns to its city centre home of The Iveagh Gardens this weekend with four full days of food stalls, champagne bars, free samples and cookery demonstrations. A key focus at Taste of Dublin this year is Flavours of the World, so you can expect that exotic theme to make an appearance throughout the cookery demonstrations and in dishes served over the weekend. Chefs appearing at the Electrolux Taste Theatre include Danni Barry, Robin Gill, Kwanghi Chan, Darina Allen, Sunil Ghai, Neven Maguire and Clodagh McKenna.

Taste of Dublin runs from June 15th to 18th. Standard tickets start from €15 (+ booking fee). Florins are Taste of Dublin’s onsite currency – you pay for all food and drink using Florins, that can be purchased around the site. 1 Florin equals €1. The festival advises that most dishes cost between €4-€7 and there are no ATMs available on site. 

The Taste of Dublin sessions are divided into lunch and dinner services, running as follows: 
Thursday 15th June 12.00pm – 4pm and 5.30pm – 10:30pm
Friday 16th June 12.00pm – 4pm and 5.30pm – 10:30pm
Saturday 17th June 12.00pm – 4pm and 5.30pm – 10:30pm
Sunday 18th June 12.00pm – 4pm and 5.30pm – 10:30pm

The main entrance is located just off Dublin’s Harcourt Street and in light of recent events in England, the festival is asking visitors not to bring backpacks or large bags.

1. Oysters from East Café Bar, The King Sitric (7 Florins for 3 oysters)
The team from The King Sitric’s casual fish bar are shucking up Kelly’s Oysters, cultivated in Galway, and serving them three ways. Oyster novices might like the lightly grilled option with salty bacon, and there’s Mignonette – a shallot and red wine vinegar dressing – for purists. Oyster pros can be bold and try the fantastic Gunpowder Gin and grapefruit dressing. See kingsitric.ie

2. Beef brisket with ruby slaw on a brioche bun from The Old Spot (6 Florins)

The Old Spot in Dublin 4 has teamed up with Hop House 13, Guinness’s lager, to create a pop-up gastropub. They’re serving up tender, slow-cooked beef brisket and a crunchy red cabbage slaw in sweet brioche buns. See theoldspot.ie

3. Irish pork belly at Urchin (7 Florins)

Urchin’s head chef Sean Smith has parked up his food truck at Taste, moving his delicious operation from the basement of Cliff Townhouse on Stephen’s Green to The Iveagh Gardens for the weekend. His Irish pork belly dish, served wrapped in a lettuce leaf and sprinkled with a seafood crunch, is not to be missed. See urchin.ie

4. Flavour Safari spicy pasta sauces (4 Florins)
When Michael Onalimi first moved to Ireland from Nigeria, he missed the spices his mother used to sell as her market shop. He felt that the Irish palate was ready for a bit of heat so he launched his range of spicy pasta sauces last year. Based in Laois, his pasta sauces are available in SuperValu in Laois, Kildare and Lucan but you can try them at Taste this weekend. See twitter.com/FlavoursUntamed

5. Mama Nagi’s Hot Punjabi Chilli Paste (4 Florins)

Mindi Keane is a Lancashire lass who married an Irish man. Inspired by her mother’s recipe, she has developed a delicious range of Indian spice pastes and pickles. Her Hot Punjabi Chilli Paste is her mother’s recipe and, though she has toned down the heat a little from her mother’s original recipe, it is fiery in the best possible way. Pick up a tub for 4 Florins. See mamanagis.ie

6. Improper Butter

Elaine Lavery and Hannah O’Reilly are spreading the good word about flavoured butters with their extended range of beautifully packaged butters, garlic bread, whipped mash and steamed sweet potato. They’re running a competition this weekend where you can win a hamper from Fallon & Byrne and brunch from Meet Me In The Morning in return for offering up your ideas of what you think their next limited edition butter should be. See improperbutter.com

7. Seedlip & Tonic on The Fever Tree Swing (6 Florins)

Fever Tree’s Ultimate Gin & Tonic Bar is certainly the prettiest stall at Taste, adorned with flowers, a swing and a repurposed Fever Tree bottle installation. They’ll be serving up plenty of G&Ts over the weekend but they also want to highlight Fever Tree’s versatility with other spirits, such as through their Spiced Rum and Ginger Beer (9 Florins) or even as an option for non-drinkers. Their Seedlip Spice & Aromatic Tonic (6 Florins) pairs their tonic with Seedlip, a non-alcoholic spirit distilled in the UK. See fever-tree.com

8. Spicebag Cocktail (7 Florins)
We’re not sure if this is the greatest or the worst idea ever. This cocktail is a mix of Town Branch Rye, homemade passion fruit and mango puree, peach liqueur, Peychaud bitters, lime juice and chilli tincture. If you’re brave enough, you can try the Spice Bag Cocktail at Alltech’s Craft Brews Bar. See alltech.com

9. Ariosa Coffee at Gather & Gather (3 Florins)

Gather & Gather is a UK-based workplace catering company which supplies companies such as LinkedIn, Eir and Sky with a more artisan style of food for their employees. At Taste, Gather & Gather is serving mini doughnuts from LaRousse and excellent coffee from Meath-based roasters Ariosa Coffee from a vintage food van. See gatherandgather.com/

10. So Prosecco Cupcakes from The Cupcake Bloke (3 Florins per cupcake)

Serving up his usual standard of exquisite cupcakes, The Cupcake Bloke aka Graham Herterich has a couple of collaborative cupcakes on offer this weekend. The So Prosecco & Raspberry Cupcake is topped with Prosecco Jelly, fresh raspberry and white chocolate, while the Lemon, Lime & Grapefruit Cupcake comes with a Bloom Gin frosting and G&T pipette. See thecupcakebloke.com

For more information on this year's festival see tasteofdublin.ie

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