Celebrity chef, and â€˜King of the Jungleâ€™, Gino Dâ€™Acampo is preparing to cook up a storm in Belfast next week.
Gino will be at Connswater Shopping Centre next Thursday lunchtime (25 March), when he will be joined by Paul Rankin and other local chefs in a culinary challenge to create the Great Belfast Menu with just five locally produced ingredients.
This free event runs from 12.30pm â€“ 1.30pm, and there will also be an â€˜Iâ€™m a Celebrityâ€™ style tasting of some rather more unusual products.
â€˜Gino Cooks the Great Belfast Menuâ€™ is part of the first ever â€˜Great Belfast Food Weekâ€™ which runs from Wednesday 24 to Saturday 27 March. It is promoting all that is good about local food, its producers and those who bring it to our tables and highlighting the importance of supporting the local food industry.
Lord Mayor, Councillor Naomi Long who will be attending the event commented:
â€œCulinary tourism is becoming a very important part of what attracts â€“ and what we offer to â€“ our ever increasing number of visitors each year. The high quality of produce here, combined with our fabulously warm hospitality is attracting people to visit time and time again.â€
The â€˜Great Belfast Food Weekâ€™ is organised by Belfast City Council, in conjunction with the Department of Agriculture and Regional Development, through the Northern Ireland Regional Food Programme.
Agriculture Minister Michelle Gildernew commented:
“Belfast Food Week is offering both customers and tourists an opportunity to sample the high quality of the produce available from our local agri-food industry. By making regional food an integral part of the Food Week and by attracting renowned chefs capable of converting the raw ingredients into favourite dishes with a cosmopolitan twist, Belfast City Council have embraced the message that local food is good food and incorporated it into their food tourism initiatives.â€
The â€˜Great Belfast Food Weekâ€™ will see a variety of events and demonstrations at key locations in and around Belfast city centre, including:
â€¢ a chance to sample a delicious four course lunch, hosted by Gino Dâ€™Acampo and using fresh ingredients sourced directly from St Georgeâ€™s Market (Friday 26 March)
â€¢ enjoy the â€˜Belfast Kitchenâ€™ with James Martin, Paul Rankin, Nick Price and Jason More, at the Ulster Museum on Wednesday 24 March (9.30am);
â€¢ a â€˜Good Food means Good Businessâ€™ breakfast seminar, with Martin Hamilton, of Mash Direct, giving an insight into his award winning companyâ€™s strategy for success, at the Holiday Inn on Thursday 25 March (8am);
â€¢ Nick Price and Sheila Dillon, presenter of Radio 4â€™s â€˜Good Food Programmeâ€™, talking about the Slow Food Movement, at the Grand Opera House on Friday 26 March (2.30pm);
â€¢ a Saturday culinary walking trail through the heart of city, led by Sheila Dillon and Kabosh Theatre, leaving from Sawers in Fountain Lane at 10am and ending at St Georgeâ€™s Market; and
â€¢ the inaugural Chocolate Festival at St Georgeâ€™s Market, which will bring events to a close on Saturday 27 March (11am -3pm).
For more information on all events during the Great Belfast Food Week, log on to www.belfastcity.gov.uk/lovefood
Tickets are available for all events from the Belfast Welcome Centre in Donegall Place – call +44 (0)28 9024 6609 or log on to www.gotobelfast.com – except for Gino Dâ€™Acampo at St Georgeâ€™s Bar and Grill, which can be booked by calling +44 (0)28 9024 0014.