The beginning of 2016 saw the launch of the Year of Food and Drink in Northern Ireland, a celebration of the abundance of local produce, traditions and talent that our beautiful country has to offer. Each month has been allocated a unique, foodie theme, which began with Breakfast Month and includes Brewing and Traditions; Heritage; and Seas, Rivers and Loughs.
Alongside a number of other local businesses, The Merchant Hotel is delighted to participate in YOFAD16 by continuing to showcase the very best of our food and drink throughout the hotel, as well as highlighting the passion of those who work behind the scenes to produce it.
Sound enticing? Here’s a breakdown of what The Merchant Hotel has to offer in this mouth-watering year.
What does The Year of Food and Drink mean to us?
As aforementioned, each month of the Year of Food and Drink has a dedicated theme, allowing us to tailor our offerings accordingly. As well as acting as an incentive to visit Northern Ireland, it is a time for us to reflect on every individual that contributes to our sumptuous food experiences throughout Northern Ireland, from chefs and waiting staff to artisan producers and many more.
What events do we have planned for 2016?
We plan to make the most of every theme in the Year of Food and Drink, with each theme corresponding to specific events or dishes throughout the hotel, from The Great Room Restaurant to the Cocktail Bar, Berts Jazz Bar and The Cloth Ear.
Amongst the events taking place, there will be a pop-up afternoon tea event, our annual chilli festival in The Cloth Ear, Fireside Whiskey events in The Cocktail Bar and the Sustainable Gastronomy Dinner.
As well as hosting events, our social media will come to life with related content, from photographs of delectable dishes taken straight from our kitchens, to interesting articles showcasing our local produce.
What external events will we be part of?
Whilst the Year of Food and Drink is an excellent opportunity to showcase our hotel, it is also an opportunity to come together with other local businesses. With this in mind, we will be participating in the Twilight Markets at St Georges Market, Belfast Restaurant Week and Culture Night among other local events.
Which of our suppliers will we be showcasing?
At The Merchant Hotel we rely on our local producers for the high quality of produce that we continue to deliver throughout our hotel, and the Year of Food and Drink is a prime opportunity to showcase these producers in return for the hard work that takes place behind the scenes. These suppliers include The Walled Garden at Helen’s Bay, Hannon Meats, Ewing’s Seafood, La Rousse Cheese, Broughgammon Farm, Get Fresh Vegetables and Islander Seafood, to name but a few.