GO AHEAD PUNKS MAKE OUR DAY!

Hot Press - - Wildlife -

The diet’s out the win­dow as STU­ART CLARK gets stuck into the best of what 2018 has to of­fer food and drink-wise.

2018 looks like be­ing the year that BrewDog fi­nally touch down here with co-founder James Watt re­veal­ing that, “Ire­land has long been a key ex­port mar­ket for BrewDog. The brew­ery is cur­rently scout­ing for a lo­ca­tion for a bar of its own in Dublin.”

As a “ges­ture of grat­i­tude for its pas­sion­ate Ir­ish punks”, they’ve pro­duced a lim­ited-edi­tion Hello My Name Is Ni­amh Dou­ble IPA.

“It’s in­fused with el­der­flower which grows in abun­dance across fields and parks in Ire­land and has been used in brew­ing and dis­till­ing for cen­turies,” Watts con­tin­ues. “Ire­land has some of the most cre­ative and bound­ary push­ing craft brew­ers in Europe. We hope Hello My Name Is Ni­amh will in­spire more brew­ers and bring in thou­sands more to the craft side.”

Hot Flavours will be in the thick of the ac­tion from March 8-10 as the All­tech Craft Brews & Food Fair re­turns to the Dublin Con­ven­tion Cen­tre. Tick­ets priced from €13.85 are avail­able from eu.all­tech­brewsand­food.com and, yes, they will be show­ing the pick of the Six Nations rugby ac­tion on their very big screens!

New Ir­ish brew­ers/fer­menters we look for­ward to mak­ing the ac­quain­tance of in­clude Soul­wa­ter from Gal­way whose 4.5% Ko­jak Oat­meal Milk

Stout does Theo proud, West­meath’s Dead

Cen­tre who prom­ise “beers that’ll blow your fuck­ing mind!” and the Kin­sale Mead Co. who are re­dis­cov­er­ing the world’s old­est al­co­holic drink.

You should also make it your busi­ness this year to check out Móinéir Straw­berry and Black­berry Wine, the flag­ship ar­ti­san tip­ples from Wick­low Way Wines, which give their grape-y coun­ter­parts a se­ri­ous run for their money. Be­fore go­ing into the drinks busi­ness, co-founder Brett Stephen­son was an au­dio en­gi­neer who worked with the likes of U2, Van Mor­ri­son, Eric Clap­ton and the Red Hot Chili Pep­pers. wick­lowway­wines.ie.

Join­ing them on 2018’s ‘rec­om­mended list’ are the range of yummy Al­mond MLKs be­ing made with much love in County Lim­er­ick by the­goodlit­tle­cook.com; the out­ra­geously tasty Sticky Tof­fee num­ber, which makes up part of the What’s For Pud­ding? range that’s be­ing rus­tled up in the Boyne Val­ley, and the sen­sa­tional Sea­weed, Spelt & Seed and Za’atar Flat­breads from Mideast Mezze, the Water­ford com­pany run by Is­raeli food lovers Dvir Nusery and Ni­cola Crow­ley.

Hot Flavours sus­pects that TV screens will be graced a lot more this year by Pa­trick Han­lon and Rus­sell Al­ford, AKA the Gas­troGays, who we’ll be talk­ing to in our next is­sue...

On the restau­rant front, Corko­ni­ans can look for­ward to ichigo ichie, the Ja­panese fine din­ing es­tab­lish­ment tak­ing up res­i­dence soon on Fenns Quay; Dublin­ers will be check­ing Etto’s new ‘vaguely Span­ish’ joint, Una Mas, out on Aungier Street, and all of us will be punch­ing Bal­ly­de­hob, Co. Cork into the Sat­Nav to see what for­mer Tankard­stown man, Rob­bie Kraw­cyzk, has in store for us with the The Ch­est­nut.

Com­pet­ing with the Spice Bag for our artery­hard­en­ing favours is the Garbage Plate, a hy­per­calorific pig-out in­vented by the folk at Nick Ta­hou Hots in Rochester, New York. Al­ready pitch­ing up on Lon­don fast food menus, it com­prises lay­ers of baked beans, mac­a­roni cheese and crispy fries topped with fried onions, mus­tard, Tabasco-laced ragú and – de­pend­ing on choice – a hot dog, ham­burger, pork chop, sausage, ham, fish or eggs. We’ll keep a trol­ley for you in ca­su­alty!

You’ve prob­a­bly sussed by now that this is not your av­er­age ses­sion lager. Brewed by moon­light­ing Rye River man, Alex Lewis, in as­so­ci­a­tion with Gothen­burg’s equally hip­ster­ish Beerbliotek – for once the ‘H’-word isn’t an in­sult – this Bel­gian Trap­pist­style ale pours a gor­geous deep red with layer upon layer of rich fruity flavour.

Let us also salute who­ever does Whiplash’s brand­ing, which looks like some­thing that might have adorned a 4AD al­bum sleeve in the ‘90s.

It’s not even Fe­bru­ary and we al­ready have a con­tender for Beer of the Year. Stun­ning!

(clock­wise from above) The Gas­troGays, in­tro­duc­ing the Garbage Plate & Za’atar hero

Whiplash 9% What Else Is New?

Fig & Rye Bel­gian Quadru­pel

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