Galway to host Ireland’s first sherry festival next month

Multi-award-winning Spanish restaurant Cava Bodega is celebrating the grape harvest by hosting Sherry Fiesta, Ireland's first sherry festival, in September.

Special dishes with sherry pairings will be available throughout the festival, and staff will be available to talk to diners about different sherries, such as Manzanilla, Fino from DO Jerez, and Barbadillo.

A series of four sherry masterclasses will take place on Friday September 2, 9, 23, and 30. The September 2 and 23 masterclasses will be hosted by Cava Bodega owner and Michelin star chef Jp McMahon. The others will be led by Elizabeth Fox, a wine lecturer in GMIT, on September 9; and Paddy Murphy, the young Irish sherry aficionado and certified sherry educator behind The Vine Inspiration blog, on September 30.

“Sherry is such a beautiful, under-appreciated wine," said Jp McMahon. "From dry to nutty to sweet, there truly is something for everyone to enjoy. Sherry is a food lover’s wine. I want everyone to enjoy the pleasure of understanding this unique and ancient drink.”

The cost is €45 per masterclass which includes a copy of the Tapas: A Taste of Spain in Ireland cookbook by Jp McMahon. It features recipes from the Cava Bodega menu that have sherry as a key ingredient, such as octopus, chorizo and Oloroso sherry, whole prawns in Fino sherry, and free range duck, plums, and PX sherry. The capacity of each masterclass is limited to 25 people.

You can find out more about Sherry Fiesta with details about the masterclasses and how to book at


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