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Top Restaurants in Ireland announced at Irish Restaurant Awards 2014 in association with the Sunday Independent LIFE Magazine

Top Restaurants in Ireland announced at Irish Restaurant Awards 2014 in association with the Sunday Independent LIFE Magazine

  • Kilkenny Restaurant Campagne named Best Restaurant in Ireland
  • Neven Maguire of MacNean House and Restaurant crowned Best Chef in Ireland

June 9th 2014, Dublin, Ireland.

Kilkenny Restaurant Campagne took home the prize of Best Restaurant in Ireland and Neven Maguire, Head Chef of MacNean House and Restaurant, was crowned Best Chef in Ireland at the Irish Restaurant Awards 2014 in association with the Sunday Independent LIFE Magazine, in The DoubleTree by Hilton, Monday June 9th. Over 900 restaurateurs and industry players turned out to attend Ireland’s biggest ever Restaurant awards where Regional and All-Ireland winners were announced in the following categories;

Best Restaurant in Ireland Sponsored by Dalcassian Wines & Spirits and Wakefield Wines
·      Campagne
Best Chef in Ireland Sponsored by La Rousse Foods
·      Neven Maguire of MacNean House & Restaurant
Best Hotel Restaurant in Ireland Sponsored by Pallas Foods
·      The Lady Helen @ Mount Juliet
Best Casual Dining in Ireland Sponsored by Bunzl McLaughlin
·      ETTO
Best Gastro Pub in Ireland Sponsored by Total Produce
·      The Chop House
Best Wine Experience in Ireland Sponsored by Classic Drinks & Champagne Pannier
·      Fallon & Byrne
Best Customer Service in Ireland Sponsored by
·      Renvyle House Hotel
Best Restaurant Manager in Ireland Supported by The Restaurants Association of Ireland
·      Alain Kerloc’H of Ox
Best Kids Size Me in Ireland Sponsored by Heinz
·      ely gastro bar
Best ‘Foodie Town’ in Ireland Sponsored by
·      Dingle / Daingean Uí Chuis
Best Café in Ireland Sponsored by Bewley’s
·      Kelly’s Café
Best Cocktail Experience in Ireland Sponsored by Ketel One, Diageo Reserve
·      Saba
Best Cookery School in Ireland Sponsored by Avonmore
·      Ballymaloe Cookery School
Best Digital Marketing in Ireland Sponsored by Nomos Productions
·      Canteen
Best Emerging Irish Cuisine in Ireland Sponsored by Odaios Foods
·      The Global Village Restaurant
Best Newcomer in Ireland Sponsored by Dalcassian and Cielo
·      Forest Avenue
Best Practice in Energy Management in Ireland Sponsored by Calor
·      The Ocean Restaurant at The Maritime Hotel
Best Private Dining & Club Restaurant in Ireland Sponsored by San Pellegrino
·      Restaurant Forty One at Residence
Best Restaurant Design in Ireland Supported by The Restaurants Association of Ireland
·      Kay’s Kitchen, Jervis Shopping Centre
Best Seafood Experience in Ireland Sponsored by Burren Smokehouse
·      O’Grady’s on the Pier
Sustainable Restaurant of the Year in Ireland Sponsored by Unilever
·      West @ The Twelve
Best World Cuisine in Ireland Sponsored by Elavon
·      China Sichaun
Best Value Dining in Ireland Sponsored by Tourism Ireland
·      Fenton’s of Dingle

For a full list of winners, see below.

Pádraic Óg Gallagher, President of the Restaurants Association of Ireland said;

“This year’s awards have been the biggest, brightest- and the best. They are the awards everyone wants to be associated with, and everyone wants to be a winner. As a testament to their success, we’ve seen a huge increase in nominations and votes since last year, with over 19,000 nominations for Ireland’s favourite restaurants, chefs, gastro pubs, hotel restaurants, restaurant managers and ‘foodie towns’ throughout the country. The Irish Restaurant Awards are all about celebrating those who have brought acclaim to the Irish food scene from abroad and who keep the restaurant industry thriving at home.

Ireland has so much to offer to the culinary tourist, and these Awards remind everyone of the quality and class of Irish restaurants and Chefs. The Irish restaurant scene is vital to the economy, employing 64,000 people and generating revenue in excess of €2 billion per year, it’s great to celebrate the work that all of our restaurateurs around the country do to keep this aspect of our culture alive and kicking.”

The Menu for the five-course Gala was created by five chefs who have previously won Best Chef titles at the Irish Restaurant Awards. This year’s sumptuous menu was devised by the following Chefs;

Opening Course- Ian Orr, Browns Restaurant & Champagne Lounge
Slow cooked Cavan Pork neck with Toffee Apple Purée & Poached Rhubarb
Kindly sponsored by Pallas Foods

Soup Course- Gary O’Hanlon, VM Restaurant, Viewmount House
Oven Roasted Sweet Potato & Ginger Soup
Donegal Chilli Rapeseed Oil, Coconut Milk
Kindly sponsored by Total Produce & Bretzel Bakery

Fish Course- Tom Flavin, Limerick Strand Hotel
Irish Trout, Smoked Salmon, Herring, Beetroot, Organic leaves
Kindly sponsored by Burren Smokehouse, Rene Cusack Limerick and Silver Darlings of the Sea Limerick

Main Course- Sunil Ghai, Ananda
48hrs Kildare Lamb Shank
with Cardamom, Saffron & Fennel and served with Baby Turnip, Pearl Potatoes & Caramelised Baby Fennel
Kindly sponsored by La Rousse Roods & Total Produce

Dessert Course- JP McMahon, Aniar
Elderflower, Yogurt, Cucumber, Cauliflower, Dill
Elderflower and Yogurt Mousse, Cucumber Granita, Dill Oil, Dried Cauliflower Crisp
Kindly sponsored by La Rousse Foods


The 2014 Irish Restaurant Awards are brought to you by The Restaurants Association of Ireland in association with the Sunday Independent LIFE Magazine. The awards are the largest and most coveted awards in the Irish Restaurant Industry.

The Awards recognise achievement and excellence in the Restaurant and Hospitality Industry throughout the 32 counties of the Island of Ireland in 25 categories and celebrate all aspects of the Industry from Chefs and Restaurants, Cafes and Gastro Pubs, to Food Producers, Restaurant Managers and Cookery Schools.

Nominations for the Awards are made by readers of the Sunday Independent LIFE Magazine and members of the Restaurants Association of Ireland.

The nomination & awards selection process is also independently audited by Ernst & Young to ensure that best practices & standards have been adhered to throughout the process.

The 2014 Awards process ran from February 16th until 9th June 2014. It is a detailed and thorough process whereby nominated Restaurants face rigorous scrutiny from the Consumer, Regional Judges, a Mystery Guest Visitor and finally the National Awards Academy. The Irish Restaurant Awards are the only kind restaurant awards in the country that carry out mystery guest inspections.

County winners were announced at a number of Regional Awards during March and April and the All-Ireland Awards took place last night, Monday 9th June 2014 in the DoubleTree by Hilton, Dublin.

There are two phases of voting. Phase one comprises of the public nomination, which went online bringing in over 19,000 votes in the three weeks of the public voting, almost double the figure of the 2013 voting record.

There are 3 components to phase two of the process;
1. Mystery Guest Visit (55%) This component of the awards is conducted by Prism Consulting headed by Hugo Arnold, independent food writer and consultant. All County Winners receive a mystery guest visit throughout the month of April and May.
2. National Awards Academy (35%) Our National Awards Academy is made up representatives from each of the regional judging panels and meet in May to Judge the County Winners.
3. Menu Judging (10%) All County winners and the Dublin Shortlist in each category are asked to submit a copy of their food menu and wine list for judging.

Best Restaurant Kindly Sponsored by Dalcassian Wines & Spirits and Wakefield Wines

v Connaught- An Port Mór, Mayo
v Dublin – Dax Restaurant
v Leinster – Campagne, Kilkenny
v Munster – 1826 Adare, Limerick
v Ulster – Ox, Antrim
v All-Ireland- Campagne, Kilkenny

Best Chef Kindly Sponsored by La Rousse Foods

v Connaught- Frankie Mallon of An Port Mór, Mayo
v Dublin – John Wyer of Forest Avenue
v Leinster – Billy Whitty of Aldridge Lodge, Wexford
v Munster – Kevin Aherne of Sage Restaurant, Cork
v Ulster – Neven Maguire of MacNean House and Restaurant, Cavan
v All-Ireland- Neven Maguire of MacNean House and Restaurant, Cavan

Best Hotel Restaurant Kindly Sponsored by Pallas Foods

v Connaught- The Restaurant at Belleek Castle, Mayo
v Dublin – The Cellar Restaurant at Merrion Hotel
v Leinster – The Lady Helen at Mount Juliet, Kilkenny
v Munster – The Dining Room at Gregan’s Castle Hotel, Clare
v Ulster – Newforge House, Armagh
v All-Ireland- The Lady Helen at Mount Juliet, Kilkenny

Best Casual Dining Kindly Sponsored by Bunzl McLaughlin

v Connaught- Shells Seaside Bakery & Café, Sligo
v Dublin – ETTO
v Leinster – Avenue Café & Restaurant, Kildare
v Munster – Nash 19, Cork
v Ulster – Hadskis, Antrim
v All-Ireland- ETTO, Dublin

Best Gastro Pub Kindly Sponsored by Total Produce

v Connaught- The Pins at The Twelve, Galway
v Dublin –The Chop House
v Leinster – The Fatted Calf, Westmeath
v Munster – The Derg Inn, Tipperary
v Ulster – The Brewer’s House, Tyrone
v All-Ireland- The Chop House, Dublin

Best Wine Experience Kindly Sponsored by Classic Drinks & Champagne Pannier

v Connaught- West at The Twelve, Galway
v Dublin –Fallon & Byrne
v Leinster – Sha-Roe Bistro, Carlow
v Munster – Killarney Wine Rooms at The Malton, Kerry
v Ulster – Ox, Antrim
v All-Ireland- Fallon & Byrne, Dublin

Best Customer Service Kindly Sponsored by

v Connaught- Renvyle House Hotel, Galway
v Dublin –Chapter One
v Leinster – The Restaurant at Marlfield House, Wexford
v Munster – Earl of Thomond at Dromoland Castle Hotel, Clare
v Ulster – Vanilla Restaurant, Down
v All-Ireland- Renvyle House Hotel, Galway

Best Kids Size Me Kindly Sponsored by Heinz

v Dublin- ely gastro bar
v All-Ireland- ely gastro bar

Best Restaurant Manager Supported by The Restaurants Association of Ireland

v Dublin – Stéphane Robin of Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud
v All-Ireland – Alain Kerloc’H of Ox


For further information contact:

Adrian Cummins,
Chief Executive Officer
Mobile: +353 86 8263311
Telephone: +353 1 6779901
Twitter: @restawards

Our thanks to