Taste the Greatness at this year’s Balmoral Show

At the heart of Balmoral Show, Northern Ireland’s largest agri-food event, is farming and fantastic award winning locally-produced food. Every year the event showcases the very best of the region’s quality food and this year is no exception. The NI Food Pavilion is making a return to the Show over the 16th to 19th May, and exciting plans have been unveiled. Michele Shirlow from Food NI announced, “The NI Food Pavilion at Balmoral Show 2018 will be the most exciting yet! We are delighted with the wide variety of  high quality local food and drink producers represented over the four days. We are incredibly passionate and proud of the exceptional taste of our local offering and as always our presence at the annual Balmoral Show allows us to celebrate the very best produce and encourage visitors to enjoy it. Top food writers and buyers from UK visit the pavilion to scout for talent and this year we have some exciting news about seafood exports, we are also working with the Britain is Great campaign to highlight what an excellent food and drink region we are.”

Talking about the exciting developments for this year, Michele continued, “There will be education about the virtues of kitchen waste and recycling and how it ultimately it benefits the farming industry.  Tesco NI are proudly supporting the Theatre Kitchen in the Pavilion this year. With a jam-packed timetable of chef cookery demos, food and drink tastings, exciting new activities, the annual steak competition and Young Farmers takeover – it’s a must-visit attraction at the Show this year.”

An exciting new feature in the Pavilion this year is The Food Heartland Tasting Theatre, supported by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council. Showcasing the high quality food and drink from the area, this home-grown Tasting Theatre will celebrate produce, producers, chefs and foodies from across the Food Heartland of Northern Ireland. Alderman Gareth Wilson, Lord Mayor of Armagh City Banbridge and Craigavon Borough said, “There is something for everyone at the Food Heartland Tasting Theatre, with a full schedule of events and plenty of opportunity to try local tasty treats over the four days, make it a must-see during your visit to the Show!”

Loughry College Students are also hosting a children’s area called ‘Grown Here or Flown Here?’ to educate young people on local produce. Make sure you visit the NI Food Pavilion at this year’s Show to experience the very best of Northern Ireland local produce.


Photo Caption: Rhonda Geary RUAS, Lindsay Curran Food NI with Jacqueline Scullion and Lewis Cunningham from Wilson’s Country Potatoes

2018 NI Food Pavilion List of Exhibitors:

Harnett’s Oils, Kitchen Bakes, Weir’s Organic Farm, Meadow Farm Quality Foods, Graham’s Bakery, Long Meadow Cider, Quails Fine Foods, Burren Balsamics, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, Armagh Food and Cider Festival, Armagh Cider Company, Holmes Bakery, Seafish NI, Glastry Farm Ice Cream, Dundarave and Cherryvalley, KARRO Food Group Cookstown, P. McCann and Son, Natural World Products Limited, Food NI Limited, Mullins, SD Bell & Co, Grown Here or Flown Here? Children’s Area, Pheasant’s Hill Farm Kitchen, Dale Farm, Moy Park, Morelli Ice Cream Ltd, Glens of Antrim Potatoes Ltd, Tasty Wee Numbers, Broughgammon Farm, Cloud Corn and Pinkfinch Fruit Crisps, Neary Nogs Stoneground Chocolate, Papas Mineral Co., Rooney Fish, Tayto, Sea – Source, The Krazi Baker, Milgro, Kennedy Bacon, Draynes Farm, Naturo Pet Foods, Heavenly Tasty Organics, Bank of Ireland Open Farm Weekend, Castlescreen Farm, Mid and East Antrim Food and Drink Network, Clearer Water, Linda’s Originals, Wee Mallows, Tom and Ollie, Jenny Bristow Cooking Demonstration, Hillstown Farm, Granny Shaws Fudge, Flossy Treats, From Granny’s Pantry, Genesis Crafty, Tesco NI, Ballylagan Organic Farm, Ke Nako Biltong, The Consumer Council for Northern Ireland, Past Tense Treats by Deli Lites, Linwoods Health Foods, Corndale Farm, Lecale Harvest, White’s Oats, Wilson’s Country, Avondale Foods Country Kitchen, Cavanagh Free Range Eggs Ltd., Ballylisk of Armagh, Erin Grove Preserves, Sydney B Scott & Sons, Ulster Grocer, Mange Tout Artisan Foods, Noisy Snacks Limited, Peppup, Springmount Farm, Irish Black Butter, Totally Hot NI Ltd., Riverlodge Farm Artisan

2018 Food Heartland Tasting Theatre Timetable:

Wednesday 16th May (Compere Paula McIntyre)

10am:       The Krazi Baker Mark Douglas showcasing Traditional Griddle Breads

11.30am:  Simon Dougan from The Yellow Door with Ballylisk of Armagh

1pm:         Simon Dougan from The Yellow Door with Burren Balsamics

2pm:         Gary Scott, Head Chef at Linen Hill, showcasing steak, and pork & apple burgers from Hannan Meats along with Irish Black Butter

3.15pm:    Nose to Tail Cooking with Head Chef Fernando Correa from Quails at the Gallery

Thursday 17th May: (Compere Barbara Collins)

10.30am:  Mervyn Steenson, Head Chef Grouchos on the Square, showcasing Grouchos Apple Butter, Lough Neagh  Pollan (PDO) with Andrew O’Chatten from O’Chatten Smokery

11.45am:   Head Chef Dean Coppard from Molly’s Mill in Lawrencetown with Long Meadow Cider with Donna Fox Tours, including information on Orchard and Cider Tours

1pm:          ‘Afternoon Treats’ with Holmes Bakery and Armagh Cider Company

2pm:          ‘The Heartlands BLT ‘ with Southern Regional College Chef Lecturer Barry Smyth and Professional Cookery Students

3.15pm:     Celebration Cakes with Tim Graham from Graham’s Bakery

Friday 18th May: (Compere Barbara Collins)

10.30am:   Country Kitchen, Fresh Apple and Cinnamon Porridge

11.30am:    Moy Park’s Twist on Tradition with Aaron Dixon, Head of Culinary at Moy Park

1pm:           Joyce Brownless from Blackwell House, showcasing the PGI Armagh Bramley Apple in 5 ways

2.15pm:     Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster President James Speers, with County Armagh Club Members

3.30pm:    The PGI Armagh Bramley Apple with Joyce Brownless from Blackwell House, and Hamilton Loney

Saturday 19th May: (Compere Brian McDermott)

10.30am:  Jill Managh from The Bawn Pantry showcasing Dunlarg Dexter Burgers and Pinkertons BBQ Pulled Pork with Nigel McIlrath

12noon:     A ‘Royal Wedding’ Afternoon Tea with Fiona Chapman from The Red Bus Company

1pm:          Chef Eamonn Long from Wilson’s Country showcasing Maris Piper oven roast potato chips

2pm:         A Food Heartland Gastronomy Tour with Head Chef John Whyte from Armagh City Hotel and Harnett’s Oils

3.15pm:    TAYTO Competition Draw!


2018 TESCO Theatre Kitchen

Wednesday 16th May (Compere Barbara Collins)

10.30am:   Power up your morning with White’s Oats

12noon:      How to make a winning pesto with Gerard Sands, Millbrook Lodge Hotel

1.30pm:      Catch of the Day with Roy Abraham from The Smugglers Table and Keenans Seafood

2.30pm:     Students from South East Regional College bake Tasty Treats using Dale Farm

3.30pm:      Students from South East Regional College bake Tasty Treats using Dale Farm

Thursday 17th May (Compere Paula McIntyre)

10.30am:     Traditional Irish Breads with local celebrity chef Paula McIntyre

12.30pm:     Northern Ireland Fine Food with Wine and Brine

1.30pm:       Best in NI Steak Competition

3.30pm:       The Holestone, Sugar Cured Pork and Bramley Apple Fritters

4.30pm:       The Stillhouse of Moira with Ruby Blue Spirits

5.30pm:        The Beerveloution with Hillstown Brewery

Friday 18th May (Compere Brian McDermott)

10.30am:       ‘All Things Breakfast’ with La Mon Hotel and Brian McDermott

12noon:          Vegetarian Tapas with newly opened Buba Belfast

1pm:                ‘Come Dine’ with the Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster

3.30pm:          From Branch to Bottle with Armagh Cider Company

5pm:                The secret behind Scotch Eggs, with The Salty Dog

Saturday 19th May (Compere Paula McIntyre)

10am:               Taste the Greatness of NI Breakfast with Paula McIntyre

11.30am:          ‘It’s 5 o’clock somewhere!’ with Shortcross Gin

1pm:                 Mash Direct – from Field to Fork

2pm:                ‘Come Dine’ with the Young Farmers Clubs of Ulster

3.30pm:          Afternoon Tea with Titanic Hotel and Shortcross Gin