WEXFORD LEFT OFF THE MAP IN LIST OF 65 'JUST ASK' RESTAURANTS
Bord Bia has launched a new interactive map featuring 65 award-winning restaurants across the country, but none in County Wexford get so much as get a mention.
It says the restaurants featured as part of their Just Ask initiative, including 20 from Leinster, are selected by Bord Bia and food writer Georgina Campbell for excellence in sourcing and serving local foods.
Kevin Dundon, from Dunbrody House, said he was disappointed that no Wexford restaurants were included.
'You would have thought that Wexford would feature.. you have Dunbrody House, Kellys, Marlfiend and Aldridge Lodge, but it's all subjective.
'You have somewhere like Patrick Guilbard's in Dublin, which is a two star Michelin restaurant and that's not in the Bridgestone Guide to the top 100 restaurants in Ireland,' Kevin told this newspaper, adding that 'Georgina (Campbell) loves Dunbody'.
Asked about the omission of any Wexford restaurants from the map, Bord Bia said the former Jacques Bistro on the Quays in Wexford town was a previous winner of a Just Ask award, but no restaurants in the Model County were currently listed.
'This restaurant (Jacques Bistro) has since closed and so has not been included. No other Wexford restaurants are included in the listings,' said the Bord Bia spokesperson.
Paul Hynes, who owns the critically acclaimed La Cote restaurant, which was Georgina's Campbell's Seafood Restaurant of the Year for 2016, is not included because according to Bord Bia 'they have never been a Just Ask winner'. La Cote occupies the former Jacques Bistro premises.
Paul said he didn't wish to comment on the county's omission from the map or that of La Cote from the list.
Developed in response to consumers' increasing support of local foods, Bord Bia says the Just Ask map allows diners to easily locate award-winning restaurants close by for a meal featuring the best of Irish foods.
It says the Just Ask campaign, now in its seventh year, 'has been wholeheartedly embraced by the restaurant trade. The campaign encourages diners to look for information on where the food on their plate comes from when eating out.
Each month, Bord Bia and renowned food writer Georgina Campbell award a Just Ask Restaurant of the Month to recognise best practice in transparency in food sourcing, encouraging engagement in food provenance.
Commenting on the Just Ask map, Maureen Gahan, from Bord Bia said: 'The map showcases the distribution of award-winning restaurants across the country and consumers can find their closest Just Ask restaurant with one simple click.'
Wexford, however, is off the map.