Celebrity chefs galore in Donegal town

Presidential candidate Senator David Norris, who will this year’s Taste of Donegal Food Festival, won’t be the only high profile celebrity in town for the event.

Presidential candidate Senator David Norris, who will this year’s Taste of Donegal Food Festival, won’t be the only high profile celebrity in town for the event.

A virtual cornucopia of internationally celebrated chefs - including Donegal’s own Conrad Gallagher, Neven Maguire, Kevin Dundon, Catherine Fulvio and Joe Shannon - will be on hand for demonstrations, tasting and recipe-swapping.

It’s a tremendous achievement for the festival, which has already built up a great repution, even though this is only it’s third year.

The festival takes place on the quays Donegal town, from Friday, August 26 to Sunday, August 28. With nearly 25,000 people having made their way to the marquee last year, even bigger crowds are expected this year.

The craic kicks off at 4pm on the Friday, with the official opening taking place at 7pm. MC for the evening will be Noel Cunningham and there will be music from Barbra Edwards.

In addition to the celebrity chefs, there will be demonstrations and tastings from many of the top chefs from across the north west, as well as wonderful food and drink from artisan producers.

Ernan McGettigan, chairman of the festival committee, says it’s a big undertaking but one that more than pays off. “The organising started on the Monday after the last festival ended.

“The festival is certain one important element that is putting Donegal on the map as a food destination. We were inspired by places like Kinsale, which was really the first food destination in Ireland and then Cork and Kilkenny and thought a festival would be a great way to show off all the great food - whether in restaurants here or produced locally - that can be found in Donegal.

“Ireland and Donegal have a great reputation for food - and why not? Here in Donegal we’ve clean air, clean water and the freshest ingredients. “And food is definitely the way forward in terms of the revival of our country and growing our exports.”