Fresh oysters and rare whiskeys among the highlights of the Burren Slow Food Festival, taking place 11-13 May in Lisdoonvarna, County Clare

Oysters and whiskey is a combo made in heaven. No surprise then that this is the theme of the Burren Slow Food Festival, taking place from 11-13 May in Lisdoonvarna, County Clare.

The weekend kicks off with a boat trip from Doolin to Inisheer (Inis Oírr), the smallest of the Aran Islands, for a seafood buffet. That’s followed by two full days of food markets, cookery demonstrations, talks and, best of all, oyster and whiskey tastings.

Clare is a region renowned for its shellfish farming with €79 million worth of oysters and mussels produced last year The Burren boasts several leading oyster producers including The Redbank Food Company, based in New Quay and Moyasta Oysters based in Kilrush. All the oysters are grown in the Atlantic Ocean where they feed on minerals and plankton. They take about three years to grow and are hand turned regularly. Once fully-grown they are washed, packed and delivered immediately.  

Then there’s the whiskey tasting workshop hosted by cookbook author Trevis Gleason.

Other highlights are an interactive talk with Kevin Thornton, who is regarded as one of Ireland's best chefs and the great philosopher of Irish food.  There will also be a presentation by archaeologist Dr Bill Schindler, UCD visiting assistant professor, which will delve into our culinary past and cooking habits.  The annual Burren Slow Food Banquet will take place in the Burren Storehouse in Lisdoonvarna and is one of the fastest selling events.    

Visit for full programme details and to buy tickets on line.