Eat Out? Or Eat Outside?
By Samuel Bishop
I grew up around the table. Well, a shed door on legs to be more precise. The hinges and handle were still attached, providing the children with entertainment during less-interesting discussions. The dark green door was perched on the frame of an old oak table – tablecloths were draped over it when guests came and we used a larger shed door when we were expecting more guests!
Around this table, family life revolved. It’s where stories were recounted, school-work completed, arguments settled, and of course, meals shared. It was at the core of our lives and probably one of the primary reasons I work on events and initiatives that have a table at their centre now. I’m a firm believer that community happens best when people sit around a table and share food. To taste that this Summer, here are a delicious collection of projects and activities with food at their heart.
Katie Sanderson (Living Dinners and Fumbally Cafe) and Jasper O’Connor (Fumbally Café) are encouraging us to venture out west this summer. They’ve spent the past few months converting an old boat shed into a temporary restaurant in a far corner of Connemara. A garden has been created as part of the project and those who embark on this food pilgrimage will be rewarded with an array of foraged or locally-grown, seasonal dishes. Open just for the Summer months. livingdinners.com
Take to the streets and share food with your neighbours. Street Feast is the nationwide day of street parties and this year falls on June 15th. It encourages communities to bring their tables out onto their streets for a feast. Even if you miss the date, you can plan your own for later in the summer. streetfeast.ie
Fraoch run laid-back, yoga retreats with local food and great adventures in an eco-lodge in Sligo. Collective feasts are a big part of it with participants helping to cook, guided by artist and chef Fiona Hallinan. It’s the perfect place to stop, be, gather, relax and escape. fraochretreats.com
HUNT & GATHER
A Dublin based collective hosting creative pop-up dinners in quirky locations around the city. huntandgather.com
Irish Museum of Modern Art
IMMA are planning some culinary adventures and pop-up feasts this July. imma.ie
Foraging is a delight for all ages. There’s nothing like the joy of cooking with ingredients you’ve found on a day’s exploration. Picking your way through hedgerows, fields and woodlands; it’s all about working with what’s around you this summer. The Nadur Collective have loads of advice. @NadurCollective
A common ground where people come to grow. Get your hands into the soil and eat the produce you’ve grown together. Many gardens hold community feasts with the food that they produce. Find the closest one to you, or explore the possibility of starting one in your local area.? communitygardennetwork.ning.com
‘Eating out’ in its purest sense and the food most definitely tastes better. Grab a blanket and head for the nearest and most beautiful wild spot.
So go out and grab those summer vibes. Escape to wavy fields and dappled lane-ways or out to the west. Most of all find the time to sit together, at a picnic bench, around a picnic blanket, a dining table, or even a rusted green door.