The West is Best in National Chowder Cook Off

The West Bar, Westport, Co. Mayo has been crowned National Chowder Champion 2013 following success at the 3rd Annual National Chowder Cook-Off which took place in Kinsale on Sunday 21st April.

Almost 900 people descended on the grounds of Acton’s Hotel in Kinsale for the event which saw chefs from all over Ireland serve up pots and pots of delicious creamy chowder. The competitors, made up of chefs, fishermen and commercial chowder producers travelled from all corners of Ireland to participate in the Cook-Off.

Members of the public were the judges in the highly anticipated contest, and on entry each received a voting card which allowed them to sample all chowders from the individual stalls and cast their vote to crown Ireland’s chowder champion 2013. In the end it was The West Bar’s special recipe that once again wowed the public’s palate and won their vote. Louth’s Fitzpatrick’s Bar & Restaurant, who’s fantastic “fishy” stand was one of the main talking points of the day came 2nd; while The Cornstore, Cork came in 3rd place.

Frank Walsh, co-owner of The West Bar, was stunned and delighted to be crowned champions for the second year in a row, and attributed his continued success to a simple recipe using only the freshest and best quality fish to achieve the best flavour. The West Bar has established itself as Westport’s favourite Gastro bar with both locals and tourists alike, and Chef Frank serves up a broad range of seasonal dishes based on the best of locally sourced produce such as the seafood used in their double award winning chowder, sourced directly from local fishmongers and suppliers.

Hal McElroy, chairman of Kinsale Chamber of Tourism & Business congratulated the team on their win and wished them the very best of luck in the upcoming Newport, Rhode Island Great Chowder Cook-Off, where they will fly the flag for Ireland.

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