11 October 2017
By Bryan Smyth
Cork’s Market Lane Group of restaurants are celebrating the unique, award-winning lamb from the Blasket Islands on all their food menus from today. This highly anticipated event is now in its 8th year, and given the popularity of this delicious, rare meat, the chance to experience it usually only lasts until the end of the month. This celebration of Blasket Island Lamb is exclusive to the group.
Chefs in each restaurant (Market Lane, Orso, Elbow Lane and Castle Cafe) create special lamb dishes that reflect their own in-house style of cooking and the full range of cuts will be used. These will be carefully partnered with drinks recommendations from the group’s wine and beer experts.
The habitat on the islands is what makes this product so special and gives it such a great reputation. The animals graze in a marshy meadow full of heather, natural grassland and wild herbs such as rosemary, sage and thyme. The grass is salty from sea spray which gives the lamb its highly valued pre-sale flavour. The animals are free to roam so the lamb is leaner creating a perfect fat to meat ratio.
Pamela Kelly Gough, head chef of Market Lane, who has been working with Blasket Island lamb for many years now says “We are delighted as a group to shine a light on this very special organic Autumn lamb, which is different in many ways from the more usual Spring lamb” she says. “The impeccable provenance of this product is reflected in its quality and flavour; we are proud to be the only restaurants in Ireland to serve it to our customers. This truly is a farm to fork experience with everybody in the supply chain really respectful and excited about the product.”