Countdown to Waterford Harvest Festival

The Waterford Harvest Festival will take place in the city from Friday-Sunday, September 11-13, with a series of exciting food events planned for all the family.

Speaking ahead of the event, Paul McDaid, President, Waterford Chamber said the festival provided a further opportunity to celebrate and showcase Waterford’s food culture.

“Food is something that Waterford really excels at and there is a growing recognition of how important it is to support local food producers and reduce our use of imported food that travels huge distances with massive environmental impacts. High-quality local food generates economic activity in this region while there are also social and health benefits from locally-sourced produce that will be highlighted during the Waterford Harvest Festival.”

The festival will begin on Friday with Slow Food on a Budget at the Edmund Rice International Heritage Centre at 11am. This event will be hosted by Rachael Kiely and will demonstrate how to cook tasty and healthy food on a budget.

An opportunity to tour a selection of local producers including a venison farm and chocolate making is on offer on Friday afternoon at From the Farm to the Table at Dunhill Ecopark at 1.45pm for €10 per person.

Author Michael Kelly will be launching his latest book Tales from the Home Farm’ at Waterford City Library, Lady Lane at 7pm on Friday.

From 8pm on the same evening, a Slow Food dinner will be held at Christchurch Cathedral to raise much-needed funds for the building’s restoration following its recent attack by vandals. Tickets are €50 and available from Tower Hotel Waterford.

Saturday is an action-packed day of fun-filled activity offering the whole family a choice of entertainment. ‘Picnic & Play’, is an afternoon of fun and games; an opportunity to see the ‘Discover Waterford’ balloon is also on offer at the People’s Park at 2pm.

Saturday evening sees a pre-banquet recital in Christchurch Cathedral at 5.30pm followed by the ‘Waterford Harvest Festival Feast’ at St Olafs Hall at 7pm when a six-course tasting menu will be hosted by Waterford restaurants, Chez-K’s, Bellissimo, Arlington Lodge, The Tower Hotel and Faithlegg House Hotel; a history of Waterfords culinary heritage with historian Jack Burtchaell is all included in the €45 ticket price available to book online at or at Tower Hotel, Waterford.

An All-Island Slow Food Producers Market at John Roberts Square is the weekend must do’. Starting at 10am on Sunday, September 13 the market offers a chance to buy directly from the producer, getting real value for money while directly supporting the local economy.

‘A Slice of Waterford’ will take place on Sunday afternoon at Blackfriars Abbey from 1-3pm featuring tastes from Waterford restaurants.

A food theatre hosted by Donald Sutherland will offer a feast for the senses at Little Patrick Street car-park at 12noon on Sunday, September 13.

The launch and national conference of GIY (Grow It Yourself) Ireland will also take place over the weekend at Waterford Institute of Technology. The conference will feature Trevor Sargent TD, Minister for Food & Horticulture; GIY Ireland founder, Michael Kelly; celebrated author Clodagh McKenna; author of Grow Your Own Vegetables, Joy Larkcom and Darina Allen, Founder of Ballymaloe Cookery School. Tickets cost €35 and are available from

Hosted by Slow Food Ireland and Waterford City Council, the Harvest Festival aims to involve people in the appreciation of good, clean, fair food while showcasing all the gastronomic delights the region. A full listing of festival events is available on and

Sept 2009