Best Newcomer Galway  - The Dough Brothers


April 20 th 2015, Galway.

The Connaught Regional Final of the Irish Restaurant Awards, took place in The Salthill Hotel, Galway last night and named the top restaurants in the five counties for 2015.

Over 500 restaurant owners and staff celebrated their hard work and achievements at the Awards, which saw many well-known restaurateurs of Connaught, turn out to see if they had won one of the prestigious awards.

Speaking at the awards last night, Chief Executive of the Restaurants Association of Ireland Adrian Cummins said;“The Irish Restaurant Awards celebrate their seventh year this year and have become the Island’s biggest food awards. The credibility that these awards have is reflected in the amount of nominations they received this year- over 30,000 votes were cast across twelve categories, showing that these are the awards that everyone wants to win.

“The Irish restaurant scene is internationally recognised for its high calibre of restaurateurs and chefs. These awards celebrate the people that make the restaurant sector the dynamic and exciting industry it is. They are the people who provide 72,000 jobs to our economy and generate revenue in excess of €2 billion. We’re recognising thetalent, hard work and commitment that everyone here gives to the food industry. Tonight, everyone is a winner.”

For a second year in a row, Kai Café and Restaurant took home the prize for Best Restaurant in Galway, with head chef Jessica Murphy also winning Best Chef in Galway.

For a full list of winners, see below.

Food outlets were nominated under the categories of Best Restaurant, Best Chef, Best Restaurant Manager, Best Hotel Restaurant, Best Casual Dining, Best Gastro Pub, Best Customer Service, Best Newcomer, Best Wine Experience, Best Emerging Irish Cuisine, Best Kids Size Me and Local Food Hero.

All County winners now compete for the Regional and All Ireland titles which will be announced at the Irish Restaurant Awards in the DoubleTree Hilton Hotel, Dublin on Monday 25th May, 2015.

There are 3 components to phase two of the process. Each element is independently assessed by BDO.

  1. Mystery Guest Visit (55%) This component of the awards is conducted by Prism Consulting headed by Hugo Arnold, independent food writer and consultant. All County Winners and Dublin Shortlist receive a mystery guest visit throughout the month of April and May.
  2. National Awards Academy (35%) Our National Awards Academy is made up of representatives from each of the regional judging panels and will meet in May to Judge the County Winners and Dublin Shortlist. The Academy members include food writers, journalists, academics and hospitality magazine editors.
  3. Menu Judging (10%) All County winners and the Dublin Shortlist in each category are asked to submit a copy of their food and wine menus for judging.

Best Restaurant – Sponsored by Dalcassian & Wakefield Wines

  • Galway – Kai Café and Restaurant
  • Leitrim – The Cottage Restaurant
  • Mayo – An Port Mór
  • Roscommon – The Purple Onion
  • Sligo – Eala Bhán

Best Chef – Sponsored by La Rousse Foods

  • Galway – Jessica Murphy of Kai Café and Restaurant
  • Leitrim – Shamzuri Hanifa of the Cottage Restaurant
  • Mayo – Chamila Mananwatta of Nephin Restaurant at Mulranny Park Hotel
  • Roscommon – Piotr Kaczmarek of Shannonside Restaurant at Keenan’s of Tarmonbarry
  • Sligo – Michelle McGowan at The Pilot Bar

Best Restaurant Manager in Connaught– Sponsored by Tindal Wine and Emiliana Vineyards

  • Daniel Mayr of The Library Restaurant at Belleek Castle

Best Hotel Restaurant

  • Galway – The Twelve Hotel
  • Leitrim – Sandstone Restaurant at Lough Rynn Castle
  • Mayo – The Library Restaurant at Belleek Castle
  • Roscommon – The Terrace Restaurant at Abbey Hotel
  • Sligo – Moira’s Restaurant at Cromleach Lodge

Local Food Hero in Connaught – Sponsored by Rewarding Times

  • Ronan Byrne “The Friendly Farmer”, Galway

Best Casual Dining – Sponsored by Total Produce

  • Galway – Taste Matters
  • Leitrim – Riverbank Restaurant
  • Mayo – Café Rua
  • Roscommon – Molloy’s Artisan Bakery & Café
  • Sligo – Eithna’s By The Sea

Best Kids Size Me in Connaught – Sponsored by Heinz & Kids Size Me

  • Maxwells Bistro, Galway

Best Gastro Pub – Sponsored by Bunzl McLaughlin

  • Galway – Brasserie on the Corner
  • Leitrim – The Oarsman
  • Mayo – Flanagan’s Pub
  • Roscommon – Keenan’s of Tarmanbarry
  • Sligo – The Pilot Bar

Best Newcomer – Sponsored by Elavon

  • Galway – The Dough Bro’s Wood Fired Pizza
  • Mayo – Pat Cohan’s Bar
  • Sligo – Hearts Desire Café

Best Emerging Irish Cuisine in Munster – Sponsored by Odaios Foods

  • Loam, Galway

Best Wine Experience – Sponsored by Classic Drinks & Massottina

  • Galway – Upstairs @ West at The Twelve
  • Leitrim – Sandstone Restaurant at Lough Rynn Castle
  • Mayo – The Restaurant at Newport House
  • Roscommon – The Douglas Hyde Restaurant at Kilronan Castle
  • Sligo – Hargadons

Best Customer Service- Sponsored by

  • Galway – Roisin Dubh Restaurant at Renvyle House Hotel
  • Leitrim – The Courthouse Restaurant
  • Mayo – Bar One
  • Roscommon – Molly’s Artisan Bakery & Café
  • Sligo – Harrison’s Restaurant & Bar




Notes for the Editor:

Industry Awards

Aside from the main categories, the Irish Restaurant Awards also run industry category awards, with only one All-Ireland winner been chosen. The judging and selection process for the Industry Award categories differs from the Main Award category process.  Only Members of the Restaurants Association of Ireland nominate for each of the awards in the Industry Categories with a list of finalists announced in May. These nominations are then judged by our National Awards Academy and independently assessed by our auditors before a final winner is determined in each category.

Best Cocktail Experience

Best Private Dining & Club Restaurant

Best Café

Best World Cuisine

Best Seafood Experience

Best Cookery School

Best Eco-Friendly Restaurant

Best Digital Marketing

Voting in the Industry categories has now closed online. The winners of the Industry Categories will be announced at the All-Ireland event on 25th May, 2015.  Tickets for the All-Ireland Event can be bought directly from the awards team on (01) 677 9901 or

For further information contact:

Adrian Cummins, Chief Executive Officer

Restaurants Association of Ireland

Mobile: +353 (86) 826 3311

Telephone: +353 (1) 677 9901

Fax: +353 (1) 671 8414



Twitter: @restawards


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