This years’ Blas na hÉireann awards were very special, because this year I was in attendance not just for the craic, but as the Irish Food Producers’ Champion 2023…Continue reading “Blas 2023 – Where Every One is a Winner!”
A Food Writing Workshop and Food Tour in West Cork with Dianne Jacob and Kate Ryan … COME WITH US!
- When: 8th – 11th October 2020
- Where: The Celtic Ross Hotel, Rosscarbery, West Cork, Ireland
- Early Bird Offer until 31st March 2020 – BOOK TODAY
Food with a Story to Tell is a writing workshop and food tour taking place over four days in the bread basket of Ireland: West Cork, with US-based award-winning food writer, Dianne Jacob, and West Cork-based food writer and local tour guide Kate Ryan.
Home to 70% of Ireland’s artisan food producers, West Cork is on the south-westerly edge of Ireland on the Wild Atlantic Way. It is a fertile and creative space where pioneers of food culture have created some of the most revered produce in Ireland and on the global stage.
An intimate grouping of food writers, from all backgrounds and different stages of their writing life, will be immersed in a workshop and food tour over four days packed with culinary inspirations. Our days will combine guided writing sessions by award-winning food writer Dianne Jacob with tours and meals organised by local guide and food writer Kate Ryan.
“Guests will visit local artisan food producers, dine on sumptuous gourmet lunches and dinners, take time to enjoy the glorious scenery and beaches of this coastal community,” says Ryan, who curates food tours of the area. “The tastes, sights and stories of the food we will connect with, the landscape surrounding us and the tales from the people we meet will be channelled into our writing. The goal is to discover or develop a writing voice through food, as storytellers.”
As well as workshops, there will be excursions, lunches and dinners each day and free time to enjoy the local area, or simply to write using what guests have learned and experienced.
About the Workshop and Food Tour
Inspired by beautiful views from Warren Strand beach and the Atlantic Ocean, the group will explore the importance of storytelling in food writing through instruction and workshopping. The excursions, chefs and food producers have been selected not just for the quality of food they produce, but also because of their rich story. There are lineages stretching back generations; stories of a different life before the pursuit of creating artisan cheese or growing organic vegetables; and seasonal plates to eat, layered with flavour and texture.
“Through these experiences, the workshops will guide our writers on how to find their authentic writing voice through personal essay and first person writing. We will develop the importance of story in food writing,” says Dianne. “The group will be small, affording plenty of time to write, talk, explore and gain insights from Kate and I as well as the group. Time spent together, whether around the workshop table or the dinner table, provides opportunity to share stories, absorb the atmosphere and environment, and consider how those experiences shape what and how we write.”
Attendance includes a private half-hour consultation with each instructor providing a one-on-one opportunity to discuss writing and career goals. At the end of the food writing workshop and tour, participants will leave with improved writing skills, a better understanding of the importance of story in food and how to use it, and practical, inspiring advice on pursuing their own writing projects.
In addition to the writing workshops and private consultations, we include:
- A private dinner on our first evening, complete with drinks pairings
- A visit to a nearby dairy farm with an orchard and bee hives where we will enjoy lunch made with produce from the farm;
- Dinner in a local restaurant that regularly wins plaudits for its hyper-local food ethos and minimal waste;
- A visit to one of the greatest of all Irish food producers for an exclusive tour of its award-winning cheese and charcuterie production, organic vegetables, drinks and world-renowned knife-making, (acclaimed Argentinian chef Francis Mallman cited these as the best knives in the world), with smorgasbord lunch;
- Dinner in a Michelin-starred restaurant where the Head Chef will take us on a seasonal culinary journey with a multiple-course tasting menu designed around nature.
“Food with a Story to Tell” Food Writing Workshop and Food Tour includes all workshop sessions with food writing instruction, 2 personal consultations, 2 lunches, 3 dinners (one in a Michelin-starred restaurant), a selection of drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) served with meals, 2 excursions and round-trip transportation to those excursions.
The Early Bird offer of €1300 per person is available only until 31st March 2020. After that the fee is €1500 per person.Accommodation is not included, but a special group rate is available for guests wishing to stay at Celtic Ross Hotel. Personal travel costs are also not included.
There is only space for 15 students, so people are encouraged to sign up quickly to ensure their seats as places have already begun to fill.
Visit www.flavour.ie/workshop for more information.
About Dianne Jacob
Dianne Jacob is the author of the multiple award-winning book Will Write for Food: The Complete Guide to Writing Cookbooks, Blogs, Memoir, Recipes, and More (Da Capo/Lifelong Books). She is also the co-author of two cookbooks with Chef Craig Priebe: the national award-winning The United States of Pizza (Rizzoli, 2015) and Grilled Pizzas & Piadinas (DK Publishing, 2008).
As a freelance writer, she has written for Lucky Peach, The Washington Post, and Gastronomica. Her 2016 essay “The Meaning of Mangoes,” was the grand prize winner of the M.F.K. Fisher Awards for Excellence in Culinary Writing from Les Dames Escoffier International. It also won Best Essay from the Association of Food Journalists, and was included in Best Food Writing 2016.
A former journalist and publishing company editor-in-chief, Dianne is a full-time writing coach, author, and freelance editor. Her well-known blog Will Write for Food is aimed at writers and covers trends, issues, and techniques. Dianne has spoken and taught at events and workshops around the world for more than a decade, including in London, Dubai, Vancouver, Turkey, France and Australia.
About Kate Ryan
Kate Ryan is a freelance food writer based in West Cork, Ireland. Originally from Bristol in the UK, Kate grew up in a family growing their own food, cooking from scratch and making the most of seasonal gluts. She studied Law at Bristol University, but kept returning to her dual passions of food and writing until, in 2014, Kate established Flavour.ie as a way to share her food experiences in West Cork.
In 2017, Kate was commissioned to write The Artisan Food Guide to West Cork as a resource for others to connect with food producers in the region and re-establishing close connections between grower and eater.
In 2019, Kate was invited to become a Member of the prestigious Irish Food Writers Guild.
As well as writing for a number of Irish publications, both online and print media, Kate also creates experiential food adventures, fully immersive tours and events that highlight the central theme of her writing and Flavour.ie to bring people together over great local food.
Venture west my friend, and you shall find such things to eat…
I’ll admit, I’m a tiny bit biased when it comes to West Cork food. I can’t help it; it’s where I live, where I call home and, for all the allure of Big City Living, there is simply nothing better than returning to its verdant hills and calmness.
This article was originally published in August 2016. It has been updated in April 2018.
I’d sooner get stuck in a traffic jam of crossing cows, or be forced to travel all the way home from work in second gear because it’s silage time again than be forced to sit in traffic jams of cars, or standing up in stuffy train carriages. It helps a lot that our food tastes so darn good; also why the region is the home of one of Ireland’s biggest food festivals!
Here now is my guide to indulging your inner gourmet at the region’s biggest town and vibrant foodie hub, Skibbereen. Continue reading “Skibbereen Food & Drink Guide”
Clonakilty is a town that is well rehearsed in the traditional Irish Céad Míle Fáilte. If the town had a middle name it would be ‘Welcome’. Blessed by both its position to the Atlantic Coast and award winning Inchydoney Beach, the rolling verdant hills peppered with happy cows, Clonakilty is a place that’s more than comfortable in its own skin.
Whilst often times Kinsale is hailed as the gourmet destination of West Cork, Clonakilty is its more understated cousin that is quietly growing its reputation as a world-class gourmet destination.
Clonakilty’s proud food history dates back to the 1600’s and the market that remains still so vital to the community today. For nearly 200 years, the town was home to the Deasy & Co brewhouse, famous for its Clonakilty Wrastler porter, giving rise to “The Brewery Town” moniker. The old Mill, long since silenced, would have been vital to the brewing industry as well other essential produce; and the fertile soil lent itself to great agriculture, both animal and vegetable.
Continue reading “Clonakilty Food & Drink Travel Guide – From Brewery Town to Foodie Town”
I was delighted to be asked to work with Allison Roberts, founder of Clonakilty Chocolate, on a new product launch and rebranding project. In February, Allison launched her Cocoa Husk Tea under the new brand Exploding Tree. I absolutely love everything that Allison is about – her enthusiasm and energy is to be seen to be believed.
Her rebranding from Clonakilty Chocolate to Exploding Tree took a little selling to me – only because I loved the original brand, but when Allison shared her vision for where she wanted to take her business it all fell into place and made total sense. Read all about the journey of her new product and then head to her website and purchase some – seeing as Storm Emma is preventing us from heading out at all at the moment! The tea is brilliant – I love it!
The beautiful and welcoming seaside town of Clonakilty has a reputation for firsts. The first Fair Trade town in Ireland; Ireland’s first EDEN destination of excellence; the first Cittaslow town in Ireland for celebrating the multiple benefits of slow living and slow food and recently voted the Greatest Town in Europe at the AOU Awards in London.
Now, the multi-award winning town on the south west coast of Irelands’ Wild Atlantic Way is holding claim to being the hidden gem in Ireland’s foodie crown; and a collaborative project of the towns’ best food and creative people have produced an inspiring short film about its top class foodie credentials to prove it.