1 Michelin Star Chefs: Aidan McGrath, chef proprietor, Wild Honey Inn

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th April 2018

Aidan McGrath is chef proprietor of the one Michelin starred Wild Honey Inn in County Clare, Ireland.

Aidan has worked in kitchens for over thirty years. He and his partner Kate Sweeney opened The Wild Honey Inn in 2009 and it was the first pub in Ireland to be featured in the Michelin Guide 2018.

Wild Honey Inn 

wild honey inn

 Kincora Rd, Rathbaun, Lisdoonvarna, Co. Clare, Ireland

Telephone: +353 65 707 4300

Website: www.wildhoneyinn.com

Twitter:
@wildhoneyinn

Instagram:
@wildhoneyinn

Facebook: Wild Honey Inn

Biography

Aidan McGrath is originally from Belmullet, County Mayo in Ireland. He has worked as a chef at several luxury hotels worldwide, including The Berkeley in London. He was also head chef at L’Escargot in Soho, which was later owned by Marco Pierre White. Aidan returned to Ireland in 1999 as head chef at The Limerick Inn Hotel.

aidan plating
Aiden McGrath

In 1999, Aidan and his wife Kate opened their own restaurant called Muses, in Bunratty, County Clare. It was open for seven years, and Aidan was visited by Rebecca Burr, editor of the Michelin Guide. He then did a two year stint as executive chef at Sheen Falls Lodge in Kenmare and worked at Doonbeg Golf Club, which is now the property of US president, Donald Trump. In 2012, Aidan was voted Chef of the Year by Ireland Guide.

Wild Honey Inn

Aidan McGrath and his partner, Kate Sweeney bought Kincora House in Lisdoonvarna in 2009. The building, which originally dates back to the 1860s, was a former hotel and the couple bought it whilst participating in the Irish television show At Your Service. On the show, esteemed hotelier Francis Brennan gave them advice about running a gastropub and hotel. They opened the 14-bedroom hotel and small restaurant that year, and it was awarded a Michelin Bib Gourmand almost straight away. Aidan runs the kitchen while Kate looks after front of house.

What the guides say

Michelin Guide

Restaurant James Sommerin, Michelin star restaurants, Michelin Guide 2018

AA Restaurant Guide

AA 2 Rosettes

Fast forward to 2017 and Wild Honey Inn became the first pub in Ireland to be awarded a Michelin star. It joins 12 Michelin-starred restaurants in Ireland. Wild Honey Inn was also featured in  The Irish Times' 100 best places to eat 2017.

Food Style

Aidan is classically trained and this is reflected in the ‘bistronomy’ food style at Wild Honey Inn.

His unique cooking style showcases the very best of Irish produce, in particular the seafood of Atlantic coast and The Burren, with dishes such as the Irish Hereford Ribeye served with gentlemans relish, crushed & crisp fried celeriac, girolles and a sauce béarnaise and Lough Neagh Smoked Eel with fennel & apple, beetroot and chive crème fraiche.

The pub stopped offering an A La Carte Menu in late 2016, and now has two seasonal tasting menus available from 50 or 60 euros, depending on the ingredients.

Television and other projects

Aidan has appeared on the BBC’s Gourmet Ireland, the Holiday Show on the Discovery Channel and the The Afternoon Show on RTE.

 

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th April 2018

1 Michelin Star Chefs: Aidan McGrath, chef proprietor, Wild Honey Inn