Classic & Imaginative Cooking...
The Kitchen team is led by local chef Stephen Lenahan, who has developed a philosophy to use classic and imaginative cooking with local, seasonal ingredients from our land, sea and air, combining a depth of flavour with the traditions of the Castle. But it is not just important that the ingredients used in our food at Belleek is sourced locally, the ingredients sourced for our food should be of the highest quality. Just because it’s made down the road doesn’t mean it’s better quality. The quality must come first and we encourage our producers to produce the highest quality ingredients to use in our award winning food. We also grow are own ingredients in our greenhouse and in our gardens and adapt our menu to use whatever produce is in season. We also have our local forager who sources food for us from the surrounding Belleek woodlands and also from the nearby seashore.
Stephen Lenahan is a member of the Eurotoques Ireland food council and their main aim is to identify, source and support small producers around the country. In 2016 three producers in County Mayo were successful winners of the Eurotoques food awards out of a total of five awards. This was a great achievement for the Connaught region. The Library Restaurant and Belleek Castle are also lucky enough to be listed in the 2017 Michelin Guide for Ireland and 2017 Irelands Blue Book!
The arrival of our beautiful and charming General Manager Maya Nikolaeva in 2011 ensured that we could constantly deliver an excellent dining experience to the customer on a consistent basis. Maya is omnipresent in the Castle, overseeing even the smallest details. And as you know, details are what make the difference in quality. Our focus remains on delivering quality food and service to the customer and we are still hungry for improvement. This has led to us winning our awards over the last few years and hopefully we can continue to be a popular culinary destination in the future.
Our philosphy has proved quite successful and over the last few years our Library Restaurant has won a number of awards for it's food and customer service. In 2017 Belleek Castle won the award for "Best Restaurant in Connaught" at the Good Eating Guide Awards. We have also won the ‘Best Customer Service in Mayo’ and ‘Best Customer Service in Connaught’ at the Irish Restaurant Awards or Food Oscars in Dublin. The Restaurant Association of Ireland (RAI) runs these awards every year. We also won the awards for "Best Hotel Restaurant in Connaught" in 2014 and 2016, and "Best Hotel Restaurant in Mayo" in 2014, 2015 and 2016. In 2014 our restaurant manager Daniel Mayr was given the award for "Best Restaurant Manager Connaught 2014" by the Restaurant Association Ireland (RAI).
In 2014 Belleek Castle received critical acclaim from the well respected critic Georgina Campbell and later won the "Just Ask" Restaurant of the Year 2014 Award, and were delighted to have received the prestigious 2 Rosettes award from the AA. This award is given to restaurants which achieve a high level of cookery skills with specific attention to selection of ingredients, setting the restaurant apart from others. It represents the top 4% of hotel restaurants in Ireland and England. Also, our Restaurant has been awarded "Best Hotel Restaurant Connaught 2014" and Daniel Mayr has been awarded "Best Restaurant Manager Connaught 2014" by the Restaurant Association Ireland (RAI) at the "Food Oscars" in Dublin.
At the cutting edge you will find the beautiful and charming manager, Maya. She is omnipresent in the Castle, overseeing even the smallest details. And as you know, details are what make the difference in quality.
All this would not be impossible without our food producers and partners....
We dry age our precious beef in-house, sourced from local farms and supplied by Michael McHale, Castlebar, and Michael Carr, Ballina. They also supply us with lamb & chicken. Andarl Pig Farm supplies us with organic pork and bacon products and they are commited to creating a happy, healthy environment for its animals to roam, forage, play, grunt and squeal to their hearts content, rain, hail or shine.
In Belleek we take our game seriously!! Many thanks to the suppliers of woodcock, pheasant & venison sourced through authorised dealer Pat Whitein, Claremorris, nationally with Wild Irish Game in Wicklow.
We have wonderful seafood with Killala Bay and the Moy Estuary on our doorstep, we take pride with our in-house hot-smoking and famous gravlax. Travelling a little further up the north coast to Donegal for our fresh crab, fished by Paddy Ward, back home to Mayo and Achill Island for our Mussels, picked by Padraig Gannon, most of our fish is sourced by Joe Garvin, Ballina. Triangle of garlic in springtime, wood sorrel in summer and wild mushrooms in Autumn are just a few of the many examples of the bounty we forage from Belleek forest. Organic herbs and vegetables are supplied from our own greenhouse.
Our local forager paces the wild shoreline, hunting out shellfish and seaweeds including wild Irish samphire.
A recent addition and huge success is our own polytunnel, so are also growing our own!
To book a table in the Library Restaurant in Belleek Castle please call +353 (0)96 22400 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org