The fourth Connemara Green Festival, held last weekend in Letterfrack, was a delicious celebration of all foods local.
This year’s theme was 'Eating for Conservation' which aimed to create awareness of the unique ecology of Connemara and to raise funds for biodiversity projects, while celebrating Mother Nature.
This year's festival introduced a half day conference on Friday on ‘Understanding the habitat of the fresh water Pearl Mussel’, with various speakers.
Top favourite talks and walks at the festival included the vegetarian cookery demonstration with Maureen O'Sullivan, environmentally friendly farming by Verena Bernard, seaweed foraging with Marie Louise Heffernan, a herb talk and tasting in the Letterfrack community garden with Terri Conroy, mushroom foraging with Tom Harrington, ‘Food from trees’ with Breandan O Scanaill in the national park and the popular farm to fork walk, and talk and tasting at Rosleague Manor.
Elaine Donohue, co-ordinator, Galway and West of Ireland, European Region of Gastronomy 2018, said it was an exciting, interesting, local, and delicious festival.
"As a flagship festival in our 2018 year of events it was so well worth attending and participating in all events. The Green Feast was a delicious celebration of all foods local."
The festival opened on Friday evening with a walk along the ‘Atlantic link- Waterfall walk’ - a trail which connects the Connemara National Park to the village of Letterfrack and then on to the Atlantic Ocean.
This year saw the return of the popular Green Feast which was held at the renowned Pangur Ban restaurant in Letterfrack with chef John Walsh, with a scrumptious buffet feast of local and artisan foods that included Killary mussels, smoked salmon, baked oysters, smoked mackerel pate, Connemara lamb, Kylemore Abbey vegetables and herbs, wild mushroom risotto, fish pie and goats' cheese and spinach quiche.
The Connemara Green Festival for 2019 will be held on the second weekend in October.