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Food Writers visit Taste Causeway

local news Mar 24, 2023

Bringing imminent Food Writers to our destination is important to raise awareness of our food and drink offer  in ROI and GB markets. As part of A Giant Taste of Causeway Coast and Glens campaign, Taste Causeway worked with Tourism NI and Visit Causeway to deliver a two day programme to three writers, all with little or no knowledge of the place.

Andy Clarke who has worked with James Martin,  is a regular on the Alan Titchmarsh and This Morning programmes with his local drinks and cocktails and writes extensively,  fell in love with our scenery and particularly enjoyed his Whiskey on the Rocks on the Giant’s Causeway.

Charlotte Pike who has written for The Independent and The Guardian food sections has published 5 books, last visited in 2017, was amazed by the variety and quality of producers and food experiences we have, coining the phrase “relentless innovation”. She visited North Coast Smokehouse and picked up freshly smoked salmon for breakfast, called in to see the new developments at Broughgammon Farm and had a delicious lunch at Ursa Minor.  She has showcased local producers in her own blog which you can read at 

Joanne Cronin, a regular contributor to the Irish Times was blown away by our foodie scene and the creativity on show.  She conquered a lifelong fear of heights to get across Carrick-a-rede Rope Bridge to hear Mark Rodgers tell the story of our salmon fisherman in the atmospheric surroundings of the fisherman’s cottage.  She also wrote about the new Lir restaurant as “one of  the most exciting restaurants to open in Ireland this year”

The writers were treated to an exclusive 9 course tasting menu in Lir featuring local fish and seafood and local food producers, showcasing sustainable nose to tail cooking which the restaurant prides itself on.  The menu was paired with local beers and cocktails.

The next morning the writers, led by Mark Rodgers from So Sirecht,  took a tour of the Causeway Coastal Route, stunning on a blustery, sunny day with snow on the hills.   Mark’s new “Beyond the Bridge – the story of our Salmon tour”, targeted at the luxury market was market tested on the group. On the way back they took a brief tour of the Giants Causeway and enjoyed the Whiskey on the Rocks experience delivered by The National Trust and Bushmills Distillery.

 It was back to Portrush for the finales of the trip a locally sourced menu prepared by Paula McIntyre on the set of BBC NI series Hamely, which is just about to start filming its third series. Featuring  over 20 food and drink producers it was the ultimate Taste of the Causeway Coast and Glens.

We will be featuring all the dishes produced at the launch of our Time for Lunch campaign in April.  We are working with Slow Food UK and other Slow Food destinations across the UK on this nationwide campaign representing Northern Ireland.

All writers are now preparing blogs, more social posts and commissioned press articles following the success of this first media fam trip it is planned to do more of these and feature more members in the months ahead. 

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