The significant contribution that Londonderry-based eatery Soda & Starch Pantry and Grill makes to every day food has been recognised by again being included in the Sunday Times Ireland list of 100 best restaurants.
Only eight Northern Ireland businesses made it onto the coveted list, which was published by John and Sally McKenna.
This is the second consecutive year that Soda & Starch has been included.
It is a partnership between top chef Raymond Moran and entrepreneur Ciaran O’Neill, managing director of the award-winning Bishop’s Gate Hotel, nestled inside Derry’s Walls.
In their recommendation John and Sally McKenna said of Mr Moran: “Look at the way he riffs on old warhorses like steak and onion rings, or seafood cocktail, or chocolate pudding, or a plate of pork belly and fillet.
“These are all Irish staples, standards of the kitchen. But Mr Moran takes them on a dance of culinary delight by rebirthing, refining, and adding depth to their potential. He understands these dishes, and he understands how to make them better.”
Explaining why the recommendation is important, Mr Moran said: “The Sunday Times 100 Best Restaurants in Ireland list is iconic. All genres of restaurant are reviewed to ensure that those recommended are representing modern, high quality venues that are striving to define creative Irish cooking.
“Being included is a massive endorsement. It reinforces the fact that what we’re creating is amongst the best.
“Our team is passionate about food and we’re committed to using high quality, seasonal ingredients from carefully sourced local suppliers to create delicious authentic cuisine.
“I love taking classic dishes like steak and onions and giving them the Soda & Starch treatment to make them taste exquisite.
“I’ve grown up embedded in Irish cooking traditions and hopefully that shines through in our menu offerings.
“We consistently strive to delight our patrons and it’s fantastic to have our approach to hospitality recognised in this way.”
Mr O’Neill said making it onto this list for the second year running was no small feat.
“The competition in the hospitality sector is fierce. Chefs are always pushing themselves and their teams to innovate, to create new dishes and explore new combinations of flavours,” he said.
“John and Sally McKenna, who compile the list, have tasted and sampled the best of what’s on offer in Ireland, so it is a massive honour to be recommended.
“I want to thank Raymond and the entire team for their ongoing commitment and dedication. They are the driving force that has ensured Soda & Starch Pantry and Grill made it onto The Sunday Times 100 Best Restaurants in Ireland 2020 list.
“We’re honoured that we can showcase what Derry-Londonderry has to offer to ‘foodies’, tourists and visitors who use the list as a guide when selecting places to visit.”
Soda & Starch Pantry and Grill specialises in seafood and steaks. For further information log onto www.sodaandstarch.com