• Christmas Spirits Tasting 8th November 2012

    Michael has something a bit different organised for his November tasting. With the cold weather finally taking hold and the dark nights drawing in it is now time to turn our focus towards the alternative warming spirits. Christmas Spirits, as we are calling them i.e. everything but whiskey, vodka and gin. This is a great chance to find out what else is out there in the spirit world (no pun intended).

    Michael will be hosting the event and it will include some great Rums, Cognac, Armagnac, Grappa, Sloe Gin and more! These will include some interesting new additions to our range plus some old favourites. There is sure to be something for everyone and as usual it will be very informative, educational and above all fun.

    Please note that tickets must be bought in advance and this is strictly for people over 18 years old!

    Time and date : 7.30pm, 8th November.

    Venue :Against the Grain, Wexford St, Dublin.

    Tickets :€25 in advance from Celtic Whiskey Shop.

    Feel free to contact us on 01 675 9744 for more details.



    Restaurants Association of Ireland Chief Executive Adrian Cummins has been elected to the executive committee of HOTREC,  the representative body of all of the hotels, restaurants and cafes in Europe.

    Adrian sits on the National Tourism Strategy Committee for The Gathering 2013, and the Irish Academy for Hospitality and Tourism among other bodies and is also involved in coaching the Dublin Institute of Technology Hurling Team.

  • Julie Best Sommelier in Ireland 2012

    Mary O’ Callaghan with Gérard Basset OBE

    The Irish Guild of Sommeliers held the competition to find the Best Sommelier in Ireland  in The  Stephen’s Green Hibernian Club, 9, St. Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2 on Tuesday 2nd October 2012  . The winner Julie Dupouy, Fallon and Byrne Restaurant,Dublin will represent Ireland at the Best Sommelier in the World Competition which will be held in Japan in March 2013. The Council of the Guild were delighted to have Mr. Gerard Basset, MS, MW, Bordeaux Wine MBA, O.B.E., Best Sommelier in the World 2010, on the panel of judges for the final among many other celebrities.The competition was great success.Thanks to the following sponsors: Classic Drinks, Searsons Wines and Stafford Lynch.

    The candidates with President Mary O' Callaghan

    it Díarmuid Cawley, 1st runner up, Mary O’ Callaghan,  Guild President, Julie Dupouy, winner, Andrzej Dasiak,2nd runner up and Declan Byrne President Bartenders Association of Ireland one of the judges.

    Andrew O' Gorman presenting Mary O' Callaghan Guild President with Certificate of Appreciation

    Giuseppe A. Pariani, Frescobaldi Wines, Mary O' Callaghan, Díarmuid Cawley,1st Runner Up, Terence Kenny, Champagne Pannier. Diarmuid Cawley, a recent graduate of DIT’s Culinary Arts programme was awarded Silver Medal at Ireland’s Best Sommelier Competition. Diarmuid is employed as manager and wine consultant at the renowned Fallon & Byrne Restaurant, Food Hall and Wine Bar. He will shortly commence his Masters in Antropology at London City University.Diarmuid competed against the crème de la crème of Ireland’s Sommeliers to claim the silver medal in the Best Sommelier in Ireland Competition held recently. The candidates competed in the various tests designed to test their product knowledge and demonstrate their practical ability in a restaurant context/scenario. The jury panel consisted of journalists and gastronomic critics, the President of the Irish Guild of Sommeliers Mary O’ Callaghan, and the current holder of the World’s Best Sommelier and “Association de la Sommellerie International” judge Gérard Basset.

    Mary O' Callaghan making a presentation to Nina Basset

    Gérard Basset,ASI Judge, Mary O' Callaghan Irish Guild of Sommeliers President, and Tony Conlon, College of Arts and Tourism, Dublin Institute of Technology and the Irish Guild of Sommeliers.

    L/R Gérard Basset, ASI Judge, Giuseppe A. Pariani, Frescobaldi Wines, Donncha Curran & Una Lynch, Stafford Lynch, Julie Dupouy, Winner, Mary O’ Callaghan, Guild President, Terence Kenny, Champagne Pannier, Charles Searson, Searson Wines, Hugh Murray, Classic Drinks.


    Mary O' Callaghan & Charles Searson, Searson Wines.

    Andrejz Dasiak, Hodson Bay Hotel, Athlone, Co. Westmeath, 2nd Runner Up & bronze medalist.

    Catherine Griffith, Council Member, Irish Guild of Sommeliers, Gérard Basset, OBE, ASI Judge and Mary O’ Callaghan, President, Irish Guild of Sommeliers.

    Andrew O’ Gorman, IGS, Mary O’ Callaghan, Guild President and Declan Byrne, Judge, President Bartenders Association of Ireland.

  • Churchills Port

    The Irish Guild of Sommeliers Churchill’s Port Tasting was held on Thursday,18th October,2012 at The United Arts Club, 3,Upper Fitzwilliam St., Dublin,2.

    Courtesy of Gleeson/Gilbeys Wines

    Maria Campos, Sales & Marketing Director gave an excellent tasting of the following:

    Churchill’s Estates White Douro 2011

    Churchill’s Estates Red Douro 2009

    Churchill’s Reserve Port

    Churchill’s Late Bottled Vintage 2003 (Unfiltered)

    Churchill’s Crusted Port (Bottled 2004)

    Churchill’s Vintage Port 1991

  • Searsons

    Friday, 19 October 2012=Frank Corr.
    Three steps to improve consumers’ wine experience in the on-trade, and enhance profit margins were revealed by a research expert in Dublin this week.

    csearsonLulie Halstead, Chief Executive of Wine Intelligence (pictured with Charles Searson) told an on-trade audience that Irish consumers are dissatisfied with the wine offering in the on-trade.  Ir

    ish consumers drink wine in pubs and bars less often than their counterparts abroad, and are generally less willing to experiment with new wines.

    These insights were gained from self-reported data from 550 regular Irish wine drinkers in March this year. Combining this data with UK-based research, Halstead offered a ‘Three Steps to Heaven’ approach to meeting consumer expectations:

    1. Create awareness that quality wine is on offer by using   tangible cues that can be seen as the wine drinker arrives at the venue – blackboards, displays of chilled wine in icebuckets, wine lists and tentcards.  The research showed that 30% of consumers saw no visible cues in restaurants that wine was on offer. Less than 1 in 3 wine drinkers in a pub was offered a wine list.

    2. Offer useful wine lists – short, laid out by style, and relevant to the food offering, with a choices of serve sizes. Style-driven wine lists are more useful than the traditional country of origin layout, and are proven to boost sales.

    3. Generate consumer confidence to try new wines, by embedding great customer service in wine.  Only 1 in 10 wine drinkers felt their server was passionate about wine. Halstead recommended staff wine tasting, with a simple recommendation of “I tried that” works with consumers.

    The presentation was part of Searsons Expert Series, organised by Searsons Wine Merchants.  The series aims to inform key decision makers in the hospitality trade on best practice in relation to selling wine.

    Charles Searson said “We like to think Searsons is  innovative in our thinking on wine, and are delighted to bring a global expert such as Wine Intelligence to an Irish audience.  We are already using practical recommendations, such as creating wine lists by style.”

    A lively panel discussion followed the presentation. The panel included Asheesh Dewan (Jaipur group), Ray Byrne (Wineport) and Emily Hourican (Hospitality Ireland) and Charles Searson.

    Charles Searson was a judge at the Best Sommelier in Ireland competition on 2nd October,2012.

  • Riedel Whiskey Tasting

    Riedel Comparative Whiskey Tastings9141680-1

    Having mastered grape varietal specific glassware for wine, Riedel have now taken on the challenge of optimising our enjoyment of whiskey by identifying glasses best suited to the various types and styles of whiskey.

    These tastings will take place at 7pm in our CHQ shop on:

    Wednesday 7th November & Thursday 8th November

    €25 per person
    Please book through our CHQ shop – 01 612 5540

    Places are strictly limited to 30 people on each night and these tastings will sell out fast! Book quickly to avoid disappointment.

  • Loire Valley Tasting

    Hidden Gems of the Loire Valley:

    A Tasting with Noel BougrierLoire

    We have an amazing lineup of events over the next couple of months! Producers from nearly every major French wine region will be coming over to host a series of dinners and tastings. To kick it all off, Noel Bougrier from the Loire Valley will join us next Thursday evening to present a fantastic selection of red, white and rose wines from the region.

    7pm, Thursday 25th October
    Mitchell & Son CHQ
    €10 per person

    To book please ring the CHQ shop on 01 612 5540

  • Hybrid Whiskey

    Media Release
    17th October, 2012
    The Teeling Whiskey Company signals intent with launch of Hybrid Product
    The Independent Spirit of Irish Whiskey is Reborn
    The Teeling Whiskey Company has announced its entry in to the marketplace by creating a whole new whiskey category with the launch of Hybrid Malt Whiskey.
    Jack Teeling, Cooley Distillery’s former Managing Director founded The Teeling Whiskey Company in 2012 with the aim of bringing back a strong independent voice to the Irish whiskey market. The Teeling Whiskey Company will broaden consumer choice within the Irish whiskey category by creating unique handcrafted whiskeys based on a commitment to quality and innovation.
    In the Teeling Whiskey Company’s search for new and interesting tastes a new category of whiskey was born – Hybrid Malt whiskey. The offspring from marrying award winning aged Malt whiskies from around the world creates a fusion of styles and flavours which delivers a truly unique taste experience. Bottled at cask strength with no chill filtration or colouring added, Hybrid Malt Whiskey is for connoisseurs who can see beyond the norm.
    Jack Teeling, Managing Director of the Teeling Whiskey Company, commented, “We set up the Teeling Whiskey Company to ensure that there was an independent alternative to the multinationals who are currently driving the category. We will focus on innovation and providing choice and unique whiskey expressions for whiskey connoisseurs and enthusiasts alike.
    The Hybrid is a prime example of our approach to product and category innovation. It is a fusion of styles and flavours which delivers a truly unique taste experience. Over the coming months the Teeling Whiskey Company will release a range of other products that will further expand consumer choice and challenge existing perceptions of Irish whiskey.”
    Edition No.1 of the Hybrid Malt Whiskey consists of award winning Single Malt whiskey from Cooley Distillery in Ireland and 10 Year Old Single Malt whisky from Bruicladdich in Scotland which has been married together in oak barrels for 8 years. The Hybrid Malt Whiskey is bottled at cask strength at 44.1% Alc/Vol with no chill filtration or colouring added. Edition No.1 will be limited to just 1,200 70cl bottles.
  • Port Tasting

    The Irish Guild of Sommeliers

    Churchill’s Port Tasting

    Date & Time: Thursday,18th October,2012 at 6.30pm

    Venue: The United Arts Club, 3,Upper Fitzwilliam St., Dublin,2.

    Presenter: Maria Campos, Sales and Marketing Director, Churchill’s Port

    Courtesy of Gleeson/Gilbeys Wines

    Please bring your tasting glasses

    Thursday, 18 October 2012

    Gleeson incorporating Gilbey’s has won eight awards at the National Off-Licence Association (NOffLA) Awards for a variety of their wine brands. These awards include four gold medal awards, one silver medal award and three bronze medal awards.