The 6th annual All-Ireland Chowder Cook-Off 2016 will take place in Kinsale, Co Cork on Sunday 24th April. This hugely popular event is the highlight of a two-day food festival running from 23-24 April, hosted by the town’s Good Food Circle, an association of local restaurants.
Seafood chowder is now one of the most popular items on the menu of most Irish pubs and restaurants, and every year Kinsale, an attractive port on the south coast, known as Ireland’s “gourmet capital”, and the starting point of the Wild Atlantic Way, holds a competition to find the “All-Ireland Chowder Champion”.
This year’s event will take place at Acton’s Hotel on Sunday 24th April from 2 to 4pm. The All-Ireland Chowder Cook-Off will feature professional chefs from over 30 restaurants from all over Ireland, and the winner will visit Newport, Rhode Island, Kinsale’s transatlantic twin town, as a guest chef.
The All-Ireland Chowder Cook-Off is the highlight of a two-day Family Festival that transforms the streets of Kinsale into a bustling street-food market with a carnival atmosphere. On Saturday 23rd April the town’s streets and quays will be taken over by the Taste the Wild Atlantic Way Street Food Festival, in conjunction with Kinsale Chamber of Tourism, an open-air street market with food stalls, live music and family fun all around the town. Local businesses will offer samples and take-home food for under €5, in a fun and festive atmosphere, with something for all age groups.
On Sunday 24th April, from 2 – 4 pm, over thirty chefs from all over Ireland will compete for the title of All-Ireland Chowder Champion. Members of the public will be the judges at the All-Ireland Chowder Cook-Off. For €15 the public will be given a card entitling them to a sample of each of the thirty-plus chowders, and will then vote for the winner.
The exciting atmosphere and wonderful aroma as hundreds of litres of delicious chowder is cooked and served to the public is a unique foodie event that has to be experienced to be believed. Some chowders are offered with seaweed scones or home-made brown bread, some are topped with a swirl of cream and some even come with an alcoholic livener on the side. Over a thousand people attended last year’s Cook-Off, and the event is attracting visitors from America and Europe as well as all over Ireland. This year’s Cork chowder champion, the Rising Tide, Glounthane is bringing a bus-load of supporters, and tickets to the event are selling fast.
Liam Edwards, Chairman of Kinsale Good Food Circle said, ‘Kinsale looks forward to welcoming the chowder chefs and members of the public to this year’s All-Ireland Chowder Cook-Off. Kinsale has a long tradition of fishing for seafood and of showcasing it in our gourmet restaurants, and the event has become a hugely popular one on the town’s busy annual calendar.’
The All-Ireland Chowder Champion 2016 will receive a handsome trophy, and travel to Newport, Rhode Island, Kinsale’s twin town, next summer as a guest chef. The 2015 winners, Bunratty Manor Hotel, Co Clare will travel to Newport to cook for Ireland this summer. Who will be the 2016 champions? You can help to decide, so book your tickets now.