The Menu: Food news with Joe McNamee

The Menu: Food news with Joe McNamee

Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner

Any turkey round these parts who thought Christmas was their only problem would do well to remember that the celebration of the American Thanksgiving is not entirely without its advocates on this fair green isle, and especially ought to mind their Ps and Qs if anywhere in the region of Ballinspittle, in West Cork.

This is where Diva Boutique proprietor Shannon Keane will be hosting her most favourite meal of the year, a traditional Thanksgiving dinner on November 29.

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Good morning peeps!! Can’t believe it’s almost the middle of November!! Where has the time gone?? On Friday November 29th We are bringing back our traditional Thanksgiving Dinner this year! After a two year hiatus, we decided let’s do it! Our menu will be traditional with a Diva twist, you’ll receive a lovely welcome drink on arrival, 3 courses, & in true thanksgiving style seconds if you should have room.. wine available to purchase on the night... the cost is €50.00 per person.. now taking bookings! Ring 0214778465 . . . . #divaboutiquebakery #thanksgiving2019 #thanksgivinginireland #yaycork #goodfoodireland #localvore #f52 #foodwinewomen #supportlocal #huffposttaste #thewildatlanticway #thewildatlanticwaycork #freerangeturkey

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The four-course dinner includes a welcome aperitif, and naturally features turkey, as well as traditional sausage, walnut and cranberry stuffing, using Shannon’s grandfather’s traditional recipe.

With Shannon having long made a name for her especially sinful desserts, The Menu salutes the body who can finish a traditional turkey dinner with a dessert plate of pecan pie, pumpkin cheesecake and walnut apple pie, not least because this is a dinner where the pursuit of second helpings may well even be a constitutional requirement!

Tickets are €50pp, booking essential: 021 477 8465; email

Winter Wine & Cheese Festival

On foot of the huge success of the inaugural Eatyard Wine & Cheese Festival last summer, Eatyard’s Winter Wine & Cheese Festival, kicks off this weekend (Nov 22/23; and December 6 and 7; and December 13 and 14, showcasing a splendid array of wine and cheese at Jam Park, at Airside Retail Park.

Wine providers include: Winelab, for wines on tap; natural, organic and biodynamic wines from LeCaveau; Station to Station’s Rhone Burgundy Bar; and Brewtonic Winter Warmers for mulled drinks. L’Atitude 51, stars of the summer outing,return once more and food will be provided by Sheridans, Corleggy Cheese, Blues Creamery, Coolatin and The Wooded Pig along with the Eatyard Cheese ShopChristmas Edition.

Entertainment includes Crimbo Limbo, The Christmas Cracker Challenge, Wine Pong, Christmas Karaoke and live Cheesy Singles and DJs, along with private rooms for your own karaoke party, Paradise Golf, a retro arcade and rooftop drinks options.

The Bertha Sessions

The Bertha Sessions, offering live music and supper in the rustic barn and dining terrace of lovely Ballyvolane House. This month it’s high-octane trad band, Amadáns & Bodhráns (November 29), with two-course supper and entry to gigs for just €30pp, with further discounts available for groups — any cheaper and they’ll be giving it away!

Today's Special

To be honest, The Menu is never likely to purchase nut milks as alternatives to cow’s milk and, with all due respect to his vegan friends, doesn’t even believe it is remotely comparing like with like, viewing them as two entirely different food products, the one incapable of truly replacing the other.

However, appraising a nut ‘milk’ in its own right is an entirely different matter and he is currently utterly besotted with Noretta ‘The Milklady’Brosnan’s All Full Up hand-pressed nut milks, Natural Almond and Natural Goldie (flavoured with an anti-inflammatory spice blend to aid digestion and circulation).

While he has no doubt new and novice vegans or those who are lactose-intolerant will be delighted to find a replacement for traditional milk, The Menu has been enjoying these chemical-free, natural and fresh (shelf-life of just five days) ‘milks’ as a beverage in their own right, delicate spicing further softened with sweetness courtesy of dates, particularly splendid when warmed in a pot for consumption.

He has also been putting them in smoothies and, best of all,employed Natural Almond as the primary ingredient (along with orange zest and orange water) in a biancomangiare, an Italian ‘milk’ pudding, not unlike a blancmange, a quite sublime dessert that somehow always makes a welcome for itself, even in the fullest of bellies.

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