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Cork on a Fork Festival launch

New food festival announced for Cork City this August to establish Cork city as a vibrant food destination and in support of the Night-Time Economy Initiative

‘Cork on a Fork’ Festival, August 17-21

Calling all food lovers! Add a delicious week to your diary as a brand-new 5 day food festival will take place in venues and streets across Cork City centre from August 17-21 - Cork on a Fork Festival.

It’s the perfect opportunity for locals and visitors alike to feast on the finest local food, take part in unique culinary experiences, discover the incredible range of local producers in the region, and enjoy the buzz of the city’s vibrant new outdoor dining and nightlife scene with food trails, tasting masterclasses, cooking demos, food talks, family fun, exciting night-time events, and more!

Cork on a Fork Festival will celebrate Cork food and the city’s ever evolving dining and nightlife scene.  It is supported by Cork City Council in partnership with the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and local hospitality businesses as part of Cork’s efforts to create a more diverse and sustainable night-time economy  in support of the Report of the National Night-Time Economy Taskforce. 

One of the festival highlights will be the Taste of Princes Street Dinner on opening night, which will see 200 guests seated along the newly pedestrianised street for a formal long-table style dinner showcasing the range of quality produce in the region and the culinary offering on the street. Tickets will go on sale Thursday 4 August at 9.00am.

Other special dinners include the ‘Show-Thyme’ jazz dinner event at Thyme at Seventy-Six on the Mall on Thursday evening (18th August) and a one-off Cork on a Fork evening dining experience at The Bookshelf at the Elysian on Saturday night (20th August).  

Tickle your tastebuds with some great culinary experiences over the week, such as a Whiskey and Cheese Tasting Masterclass at the Shelbourne, Tutored Beer Tasting at Elbow Lane, a Free Pizza and Beer Tasting event at the Franciscan Well, and Fish ‘n’ Wine Guerrilla Tasting at l’Atitude.  Coffee lovers will love the ‘dis’loyalty card, which encourages people to try out different independent coffee shops during the festival.

Other highlights include a Jazz Lunch on Pembroke Street, a BBQ on Harley Street in the VQ, Lunchtime Opera on Princes Street, a Stretch at Sketch Yoga Brunch, and Sushi and Yoga on the Boardwalk at Electric.  And there will be daily food trails including a Cork Food History Tour and a Taste of Cork Tapas experience. 

Cork on a Fork Festival also includes a number of live demonstrations such as a Bread and Butter Making Family Workshop at Cork Butter Museum, an English Market cooking demo with renowned Cork Chef Orla McAndrew, a workshop with Quay Co-op Spicing Up Vegetarian Meals, and a free Authentic Italian Pizza Making & Tasting Masterclass with Oak Fire Pizza!

The whole family can join in the fun with play street activities on Beasley Street and Caroline Street, a Family BBQ on Beasley Street, a Pizza Making Workshop for kids in the Marina Market, and more.

Special free guided tours of the new Meat and Potatoes Exhibition at Crawford Art Gallery will take place on Thursday, and the festival will host a number of bite size food talks. There will even be a Cookbook Swop outside Cork City Library over the week.

For those who want to experience Cork City’s renowned nightlife, head along to the Kinsale Gin pop-up events at Dwyers of Cork, the Brazilian Celebration Party at Cyprus Avenue, or the Bites and Beats Cork on a Fork Festival Afterparty at Coqbull to name a few.

Or check out the Cork on a Fork Festival Map online for a list of almost 50 venues hosting events or offering Cork on a Fork tasting plates such as Cork Tapas on the Terrace at the Cornstore or the ‘Cork boi sandwich’ from O’Flynn Gourmet Sausages.  

Commenting on the launch of the festival, the Lord Mayor of Cork Cllr Deirdre Forde said, “Our city is packed with talented chefs, great places to eat, Michelin rated restaurants, fun pubs, new outdoor dining spots, and the famous English Market.  Cork also has an incredible range of producers – from artisan cheese to smoked fish, tender meats, craft beer and more. Cork can truly become the food capital of Ireland, and Cork on a Fork Fest is an opportunity to showcase our authentic food experiences.”

The Festival is part of Cork City Council’s commitment to support a more diverse Night-Time Economy offering in Cork City and to pilot a food activation plan in the city as part of wider night-time offering.  Minister Catherine Martin T.D., Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, who is also supporting the festival said,“I want the Night-Time Economy to be about diversity of offering, inclusivity, innovation and making the most of what we have in our communities. The opportunity to create a more vibrant food scene as part of the Night-Time Economy was raised during the consultation process and it is really encouraging to see another action in our Taskforce Report being progressed and I am pleased that my own Department could support this great festival of food and culture in Cork.  Cork city has such a vibrant and growing food scene with locations such as the English Market and other parts of the city offering great opportunities for developing new food initiatives as part of the Night-Time Economy. I hope to see this develop into a more long-term offering and also hope that Cork City Council will share their experiences with other local authorities to encourage more activity in this space”.

Market Lane is working with their local food bank on Lower Oliver Plunkett Street to ensure Cork on a Fork is a food festival for all, by providing a freshly made nutritious main course to their users throughout the week of the event. 

Cork on a Fork Festival is a fantastic opportunity to experience the buzz of the city’s vibrant new outdoor dining scene which has recently seen investment to the tune of €1.3 million worth of new bespoke weatherproofing infrastructure on Princes Street, Caroline Street, Pembroke Street, Beasley Street and Union Quay along with a further €600,000 in outdoor dining grants and the granting of 146 street furniture licences.  

Cork on a Fork Fest is brought to you by Cork City Council, in partnership with the local hospitality sector and The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media.  It is supported by Pure Cork, Fáilte Ireland, Ireland’s Ancient East, Cork Business Association and Cork’s RedFM.

More and more events are being added each day.  For events, experiences, participating venues and bookings, see corkcity.ie/corkonaforkfest or @corkonaforkfest on social media. #CorkonaForkFest.