Ernan and Mary McGettigan, Loretta Mauerhoffer and Marie McCalliog with Adrian Cummins RAI and Patrick Cleary FBD
There were unbridled scenes of joy in Kilkenny this evening as Donegal town was named as the winning Foodie Town 2019 in the luxurious Mount Juliet Hotel and Golf resort.
The Foodie Town Award is given to towns or villages where tourism is a primary component of the local culture and economy.
The judges said there was a great variety of dining experiences in the town, in addition to the hospitality and knowledgeability of the locals, and they also thought it was a clever idea to use the platform of the Wild Atlantic Way to help them stand out as a place to visit.
The award comes on the heels of a very successful Taste of Donegal food Festival which has really highlighted Donegal both town and county as a great culinary destination.
Donegal also featured in another category with the Food Coast of Donegal coming in third place in the Foodie Destination with Waterford named as the winners.
Last night both Ernan and Mary McGettigan spoke of their delight at the award.
Ernan said: “We are just overcome with joy and to be honest, emotion with this announcement.
“This is our third time to enter the competition and we never even got into the top ten. The restaurants in Donegal and the county as a whole have upped their game so much - this award is really for them and the food suppliers.”
Mary McGettigan said: “To be honest I can hardly speak with emotion - Ernan along with Loretta Mauerhoffer, Marie McCalliog and myself literally devoted so much time to this project. It is just unbelievable - this means so much to the town.”
Patrick Carey, Business Development Manager in FBD Insurance sponsors of the Food Destinations said: “Yet again this year, the competition and quality of the entrants has been extremely strong. The passion and pride of each entrant shines through and represents what it truly means to be a Foodie Destination and Town and importantly – proudly Irish.
“I would like to congratulate both Donegal and Waterford for their great achievements and indeed all entrants.”