Shauna Murphy Wins Euro-Toques Young Chef Of The Year 2023

Shauna Murphy was named the winner of the Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year 2023 competition at a gala dinner held on Sunday evening at the InterContinental Hotel in Dublin.

Murphy works at Terre Restaurant in Castlemartyr Resort and is mentored by chef Angelo Vagiotis.

Emerging Culinary Talent

The Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year competition is Ireland’s premier culinary competition, celebrating Ireland’s best emerging culinary talent.

Together with fine-food specialists and official partners La Rousse Foods, Euro-Toques Ireland has designed educational activities that highlight the importance of community and support in the Irish food industry.

Five Judges

The candidates for the Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year 2023 competition cooked in front of five chef judges: Paolo Casagrande, of three-Michelin-star Lasarte, in Barcelona; Anna Haugh, of Myrtle, in London; Ahmet Dede, of two-Michelin-star Dede, in Baltimore, Co. Cork; Gareth Mullins, of Anantara the Marker Dublin; and Euro-Toques Commissioner General Kwanghi Chan.

The kitchen was run by Domini Kemp (Valence Hospitality), Conor Halpenny (the Square) and Aishling Moore (Goldie).

Flavour And Presentation

The young chefs had two and a half hours of focused cooking time to create their two dishes, incorporating Irish brown crab, lobster and Velvet Cloud yoghurt – reflecting the Euro-Toques philosophy of local, artisanal and seasonal ingredients.

The young chefs were marked under three separate categories: execution and work practice, taste and flavour, and presentation.

The six finalists – Adam Walsh (1826 Adare), Conor Morrissey (Glovers Alley), Leticia Miranda (Mae Restaurant), Marcell Palfalusi (Thyme Restaurant), Matthias Beuque (Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud) and Shauna Murphy (Terre Restaurant) – created dishes inspired by Irish traditions and heritage while combining them with the diversity of today’s modern kitchen.

The Winner

Shauna Murphy won the overall Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year 2023 competition with a main course of barbecued lobster with vanilla brown-butter bisque reduction and citrus carrot purée, served with a side of barley with lemongrass foam and crispy carrot and a dessert of date pudding with Velvet Cloud sheep’s yoghurt ice cream, burnt apple, hazelnuts and whiskey caramel.

Guest chef Paolo Casagrande announced this year’s prize, calling Shauna Murphy to the stage to receive the trophy, designed by chef Kevin Thornton.

‘Successful Careers’

“We would like to congratulate Shauna on winning the Euro-Toques Young Chef of the Year 2023, presented by La Rousse Foods,” said Manuela Spinelli, head of community, people and culture at Euro-Toques Ireland.

“It’s inspiring to see that many young chefs who take part in the competition journey remain involved with the community.

“Many former winners and finalists, who now have successful careers, were present at the gala, contributing to the success of this year’s events.”

Gala Dinner

At the gala dinner hosted by the InterContinental Hotel, the courses were created by a group of chefs who support the organisation, including canapés from Dervilla O’Flynn (Ballymaloe House), a starter from Dan Hannigan (Orwell Road) and Conor Halpenny (the Square), a fish course from Mark Moriarty, a main course from Danni Barry (Ballynahinch Castle), and dessert from Jack Lenards (Firehouse Bakery).

The all-island cheese board was served with honey and crackers, while local producers and suppliers selected by the Euro-Toques Food Council were prominently featured on the menu, including Coolattin cheddar, Dooncastle oysters, Durrus cheese, Grá Chocolates, Gubbeen cured meats, Iona Farm vegetables, Isle of Crackers cheese crackers, Killahora Orchards wines, Meadowfield Farm, Olly’s Farm honey, Skeaghanore duck, Dart Mountain cheese, Velvet Cloud, Wicklow sika deer, Wildwood Balsamics, and Ballymakenny Farm.

The wines were provided by partners JN Wine.

The Guinness Storehouse Named Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction 2023

The Guinness Storehouse was named Europe’s Leading Tourist Attraction at the World Travel Awards 2023 in Batumi, Georgia, on Friday 29th September.

Now in its 30th year, The World Travel Awards acknowledge, reward, and celebrate excellence and are recognised globally.

‘Warm Irish Welcome’

“This is fantastic recognition for Irish tourism, and for everyone at the home of Guinness, who create a world-class visitor experience and a warm Irish welcome for the thousands of people each day,” said Catherine Toolan, managing director, Diageo Irish Brand Homes.

“In the past 12 months, we have welcomed 1.4 million visitors to the Guinness Storehouse from 165 countries, who come through our famous black gates to experience the best of modern Irish culture, to learn more about our 264 years of history in the heart of Dublin and get to taste of a beautiful pint of Guinness or Guinness 0.0.”

Second Award

For the second year in a row, The Guinness Storehouse has also been voted Europe’s Leading Beer Tour Visitor Experience.

The Guinness Storehouse was the only Irish nominee in this year’s Beer Tour Visitor Experience category.

‘Excellent Recognition’

“This award is excellent recognition for the quality of the visitor experience at the Guinness Storehouse and is particularly special as these awards are voted for by the public,” said Paul Kelly, CEO of Fáilte Ireland.

“The Guinness Storehouse is an important part of the tourism offering in Dublin and offers a unique and world-class visitor experience for anyone visiting Ireland, as well as for visitors to Europe from around the world.”

Young Chef Young Waiter Ireland Awards 2023

At the Young Chef Young Waiter Ireland Awards 2023 in Titanic Belfast this week, it was announced that Galway native Stiofán Feeney, who is currently working at Stage Italy in Rome, has won the Young Chef award and Francesca Motta, who works at Chapter One in Dublin, has won the Young Waiter award.

They will both now go on to compete at the world finals in Monaco in November 2023 to celebrate culinary professionals and hospitality excellence.

Live Final

A host of professional young waiters and chefs from Northern Ireland the Republic of Ireland took part in a comprehensive judging day with a number of culinary challenges in the kitchen of Titanic Belfast and serving challenges in the Titanic Suite in front of an expert panel of judges.

Online judges included chef Richard Corrigan and chef-proprietor Anna Haugh of Myrtle London, while at the live final group executive chef at Harcourt Developments Gordon Smyth, Noel McMeel of Ebrington Hotel, Mike Tweedie of Adare Manor and Adrian McNally, Titanic Hotel Belfast were joined by alongside other culinary experts.

Three Course Meal

Finalists were given three and a half hours to create a three course meal whilst the Young Waiter candidates had to select pairing wines for each course and undertake a number of challenging scenario based situations before taking part in an interview with the judges.

Industry guests from across the tourism and hospitality industry, including Tourism Northern Ireland, Belfast Met, Hospitality and Tourism (HATS) Network and Harcourt Developments, were invited to attend the final part of the competition for an intimate lunch whilst the judges observed for the final part of the challenge.

‘High Calibre Of Talent’

“This competition celebrates excellence and promotes culinary arts and hospitality as a career of choice,” said Judge, Chef Richard Corrigan.

“The judges were very impressed at the extremely high calibre of talent of all of our finalists and each one of them should be very proud of themselves.”

“I look forward to following the careers of our winners, and indeed our fantastic group of finalists, in the years ahead as I am confident they will all have very bright futures.”

‘Businesses Will Close,’ Warns Restaurants Association After Budget

The Restaurants Association of Ireland (RAI) has labelled Budget 2024 a ‘missed opportunity’ to secure a sustainable future for Ireland’s restaurants, cafes and gastropubs.

The association noted that the government failed to deliver significant measures to support small and medium-sized food-led and hospitality businesses across the country, adding that business closures will occur as a result of its lack of ‘meaningful action’.

‘Death Warrant’

“The hospitality and food-led sector has, time and time again, warned the government that, by increasing the VAT rate for our industry to 13.5%, it will be issuing a death warrant to many businesses that will not be able to withstand yet another cost increase,” said Adrian Cummins, CEO of the RAI.

“The government has today ignored our warnings by failing to return Ireland’s restaurants, pubs and gastropubs to a 9% VAT rate – the right rate for our industry.”

‘Over The Edge’

The RAI criticised the government for allowing Ireland to remain at the European Union’s second-highest level VAT rate for hospitality.

It warned that many restaurants, cafes and gastropubs across the country will now be forced ‘over the edge’ and have to close over the coming period.

Cost Pressures

The association noted that the government should have taken into account various pieces of legislation coming into effect next year, which will place even more costs and pressure on local food-led businesses.

These include an increase in both the minimum wage and paid sick leave entitlements, as well as the planned roll-out of the pension auto-enrolment scheme.

‘Immediate Measures’

“It was recently reported that Tourism Minister Catherine Martin and Finance Minister Michael McGrath are considering reverting food-led businesses only to a 9% VAT rate in the medium term, but restaurants and cafes across the country cannot wait until then,” warned Cummins.

“The RAI will continue to engage with government ministers and other key departmental stakeholders in the hope that they come to their senses and take immediate measures to support our industry, which has still not recovered from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The Kingsley, Cork, Launches New Look Inspired By Riverside Setting

The Kingsley Hotel, in Cork, has launched its new look, which takes inspiration from the hotel’s setting, on the banks of the River Lee.

Interior designer Sinéad Cassidy has updated Fairbanks Restaurant, the K Lounge, Fishers Bar, the library and breakfast serving room, the main entrance, known as the ‘glass box’, the reception lobby, the corridors linking reception to the lift lobby, the large lift lobby area, the Deane-Woodward Suite function room, four meeting rooms, and two restrooms.

Irish Artists

The designers also chose to incorporate the history of the hotel’s original site, Cork’s Lee Baths, which operated from 1934 until 1986, including a number of framed archived photographs along the corridors, to accompany a painting that the Kingsley commissioned by renowned artist Oonagh Hurley for Fairbanks Restaurant, showing the diving board at the site of the old baths.

Throughout the establishment, guests will also find work from many Irish artists and local photographers, including Ted Murphy, Carmel Smyth and Sorcha Cloney.

‘Botanical Theme’

The public spaces in the main reception area, where food and beverages can now be served, have gained additional seating.

The team at the Kingsley incorporated a ‘strong botanical theme’ throughout the public spaces, with significant investment in indoor greenery and planters.

Local Suppliers

Other design features include bespoke pendant lighting from local suppliers Lightplan Cork and Mullan Lighting in the entrance, reception, Fairbanks Restaurant, and the Deane-Woodward Suite.

This is complemented by metallic gold- and bronze-textured wallpaper set alongside green corduroy-effect vinyl wall coverings and wallpapers packed full of botanical influences and water themes.

The new look features herringbone flooring, bespoke chairs from Irish suppliers, and new chairs and seating zones from local upholsterers Finline and Abbey Owney.

‘Vibrant New Look’

“We are delighted with the vibrant new look of the Kingsley’s public spaces,” said Fergal Harte, general manager.

“The chosen colours, soft furnishings, artwork and design features beautifully link our special location and history, while creating welcoming spaces that work for a busy city hotel.

“I’m looking forward to meeting locals and guests and hearing their feedback over the coming months.”

Adare Manor Named Best Resort In Europe

Adare Manor, in Limerick, has retained the title of Best Resort in Europe for the second year in a row, at the Condé Nast Traveler Readers’ Choice Awards.

Running since 1998, the awards are voted on by hundreds of thousands of world travellers, with nominations marked on a wide variety of criteria, including service, food and atmosphere.

Highest Score

In 2022, Adare Manor scored higher than any other European resort to win the coveted title of Best Resort in Europe, and also Best Resort in the World.

This year’s score is again the highest, confirming Adare Manor as the winner for an unprecedented second year running.

Multi-Year Renovation

Adare Manor reopened its doors at the end of 2017, following a multi-year renovation.

Condé Nast Traveler awarded Adare Manor a spot on its Hot List in 2018, as one of the best new hotels in the world, and on the exclusive Gold List in 2020, as one of the editor’s most-loved properties.

Ryder Cup

This year, Adare Manor also received a five-star rating in the Forbes Travel Guide.

Two years after reopening, the Oak Room at Adare Manor received a Michelin star – the first ever awarded in Limerick – and in 2027, the resort will be the host venue to the Ryder Cup.

‘Beyond Everything’

“Being chosen as their absolute favourite resort in Europe by voters who have visited and experienced our ‘Beyond Everything’ approach to what we do is such a source of satisfaction and reward to all our team at Adare Manor,” said Brendan O’Connor, general manager.

“Being named Best Resort in Europe was a great honour and delight last year, but it’s almost more magical for us to be chosen for a second year in succession.”

Holiday Inn-Owner IHG Records 10.5% Rise In Quarterly Room Revenue

Holiday Inn owner IHG said on Friday short-term funding issues were holding back development of new hotels, as it reported a quarter-on-quarter slowdown in its net room supply, a key revenue driver.

Its shares were down 3.6% by 1044 GMT, with Bernstein analyst Richard Clarke attributing the drop to the slowdown in net unit growth and fears it might miss its full-year guidance.

The hotel chain owner said it expected to close out 2023 with a “very strong” financial performance after a 10.5% rise in quarterly revenue per room partly thanks to China returning to pre-pandemic levels.

‘Feel That Confidence’

Citi analyst Leo Carrington said the stock sell-off could be due to the lack of company-specific positive growth indicators, as IHG stopped short of providing specific 2023 forecasts.

Hotel owners in the past few months have found it tougher to secure funding amid tighter lending standards and a rise in interest rates, slowing the construction of new hotels in countries such as the US.

CEO Elie Maalouf told analysts a potential pause in interest rate hikes as well as easing inflation are positive indicators, and its hotel owners and investors “feel that confidence”.

New Signings

“We definitely see the light at the end of the tunnel,” he said, adding that IHG was growing in new signings and system size.

The owner of the Crowne PlazaRegent and Hualuxe hotel chains reported net system size growth – the number of new rooms opened minus those that are closed – of 4.7% in the third quarter, compared with 4.8% in the prior quarter.

The group recorded growth across its leisure, business travel and group travel segments, Maalouf said in a statement.

Middle East Conflict

The hotel industry has benefited from a post-pandemic boom in leisure travel as people splurge their savings on vacations despite rising costs of living. A wider Middle East conflict however could pose a threat to tourism in the region.

Glover said IHG has not yet seen a slowdown in demand for tourism in the region because of the Israel-Hamas conflict, but added that “a lot remains to be seen.”

InterContinental Dublin Appoints Rosalie Delany As Director Of Sales And Marketing

InterContinental Dublin has announced the appointment of Rosalie Delany as director of sales and marketing.

Delany, along with her team, will be responsible for building on the success of the hotel locally, nationally and internationally.


InterContinental Dublin

InterContinental Dublin is a five-star urban resort with 215 rooms and suites, set on two garden acres in Ballsbridge.

It has the largest meeting, conference and banqueting facilities of any five-star hotel in Dublin.

The hotel is within walking distance to the city centre and minutes from the Aviva Stadium, Trinity College, and more.

MHL Hotel Collection

Originally from Co. Meath, Delany is a graduate of hotel management at DIT.

She had various roles in sales and marketing prior to joining the MHL Hotel Collection, including those at Mount Juliet Estate, the Shelbourne, Dublin, and the O’Callaghan Collection.

Delany also previously worked at the InterContinental Dublin in 2018, when she had the role of assistant director of sales, before joining Powerscourt Hotel – also part of the MHL Hotel Collection – in 2019, as director of sales and marketing.


‘A Pleasure’

“I am absolutely thrilled to return to InterContinental Dublin,” said Delany.

“I thoroughly enjoyed my time here previously, and it is such a pleasure to return to this five-star property and rejoin Nicky and his team once again.”


Nicky Logue, general manager, InterContinental Dublin, said that he is delighted to welcome Delany back to the team at the Ballsbridge-based hotel.

“We are thrilled to welcome Rosalie back to InterContinental Dublin, as director of sales and marketing,” said Logue.

“Rosalie has a wealth of five-star sales experience, including, most recently, at our sister hotel, Powerscourt Hotel and Spa, in Wicklow.”

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