Feed­ing the feel-good fac­tor

The Kerryman (South Kerry Edition) - - NEWS -

DIN­GLE’S claim as the gourmet capital of Ire­land got a mas­sive vote of con­fi­dence at the week­end from the thou­sands of peo­ple who thronged the streets of the town, de­light­ing in the food fes­ti­val taste trail, the party at­mos­phere, the chat, the ban­ter, and in the mouth-wa­ter­ing won­ders they en­coun­tered along the way in restau­rants, bars, streetside stalls and shops that nor­mally sell such things as ham­mers, wellie boots and leather belts.

The fes­ti­val is now the great gath­er­ing point of the year in Din­gle, some­what akin to a wa­ter­ing hole in the Serengeti in the dry sea­son.

Ex­cept that there’s no short­age of fod­der for the palate on the fes­ti­val taste trail, which this year had some­thing in the or­der of 80 out­lets serv­ing all the de­lights that the culi­nary sor­cer­ers of West Kerry and be­yond could con­jure up.

There was a dizzy­ing ar- ray on of­fer, from lo­cal beers to Guin­ness brown­ies, from black pud­ding to bar­be­cued kan­ga­roo, snails to tempt the brave, Din­gle gin fudge, Kieran Mur­phy’s cookie & sea salt ice­cream sand­wich, cof­fee jelly with whiskey cream & co­coa.

There was some­thing for ev­ery­one, and it seemed like ev­ery­one from Dun­quin to Dubai was look­ing for some­thing to get their teeth into.

By early on Satur­day af­ter­noon the Gardaí had closed Main Street to traf­fic and there were con­cerns that the 54,000 taste trail tick­ets wouldn’t be enough to meet the de­mand.

In the evening fes­ti­val or­gan­is­ers per­formed their own loaves and fishes miracle, gath­er­ing up the ‘re­turns’ from Satur­day’s taste trail and sta­pling them to­gether into new books of tick­ets for the fol­low­ing day, mak­ing up a to­tal of over 60,000 sold over the great week­end.

Vivi­enne Rat­ti­gan, Catherine Man­ning and Karen McKin­nie on the taste trail af­ter trav­el­ling from Cork for the Din­gle Food Fes­ti­val.

Jack O’Sul­li­van on duty at the Din­gle GAA stand where beef burgers were be­ing served at a hec­tic rate out­side Paul Geaney’s bar dur­ing the Din­gle Food Fes­ti­val. All pho­tos by De­clan Malone.

De­ichtine Ní Mhain­nín munch­ing her way through a kan­ga­roo kabab at the Din­gle Food Fes­ti­val on Satur­day.

Kate Bellcham­bers from Kil­fenora hav­ing her first taste of es­car­got, with a lit­tle en­cour­age­ment from her daugh­ter, Emma.

Joanna Martin with her son, Oisín, at the Din­gle Food Fes­ti­val on Satur­day.

Matthisa Jauch with his daugh­ters, Dara and Eadaoin who were serv­ing bub­bly at Bawn’s.

Micheál Flan­nery serv­ing up prawn bisque at his fam­ily’s re­cently opened and hugely pop­u­lar Fish Box restau­rant on Green Street.

Bren­dan Gre­aney with Eleanor Cronin.

Malte Luessen, from Mill­street and Ger­many.

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