A Slow Sunday at Belleek Castle

Slow adventure is the new thing these days and when it involves food it’s even better. Basically it’s about taking your time, meeting like-minded people and enjoying your surroundings and this sounded like just what I needed. So when I saw the Slow Food Mayo event at Belleek Castle in Ballina, Co. Mayo I had to book it.

Once again I was blown away by the attention to detail at the Belleek Castle. From start to finish it was just a wonderful day. We got a tour of the garden by head gardener Alex Lavarde who introduced us to so many different herbs and plants, all of which are used in the castle kitchen. I’d never really thought about the correlation between the garden and the kitchen – shows how much I know!

The group got a tour of the castle but as I’d only just done it on Wednesday I sat in the courtyard and enjoyed the sunshine. You can read my post about the tour of the castle here.

Then there was lunch and oh my goodness what a selection! Head Chef David O’Donnell came up with a superb feast of food sourced from the gardens.

There was also pork and beef from Andarl Farm, oysters from Achill Oysters, Aran Goat Cheese from Gabriel Flaherty and lamb from Achill Mountain Lamb. We also had a variety of breads, homemade lemonade and delicious cakes.

After all that food we went on a foraging walk with Alex Jaromin in Belleek Woods. Alex was pointing out all things edible – and some that weren’t and Stephen, the museum curator pointed out places of interest in the woods.

It was an absolutely wonderful day. I loved every bit of it, everyone was so friendly, it was the perfect way to spend a Sunday. Slow Food Ireland is run by volunteers and the different groups host various events around the country. You can find out more about them here. The rest of my photos from the day are here.

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