O Donovan Off Licence “The Return of The Wine Geese” Banquet



Bringing The Wine Geese Home

Gala Banquet at Flemings Restaurant, Cork City

Saturday 18th May 2013

7.30pm Drinks Reception


“The Return of The Wine Geese” Banquet will bring together wines with an Irish heritage from around the globe with wonderful food in the beautiful Flemings Restaurant.

You will taste wonderful wines from The McKenna Collection from Unduragga, Chateau de la Ligne, Chateau McCarthy, Chateau Bellevue La Forêt and Charmes de Magnol to name but a few!  Also served will be an aperitif from Pernod Ricard and a digestif from Hennessy Cognac.

There will wine drama from Susan Boyle who has wowed audiences with her Wine Geese Drama.

A night not to be missed!


Pate de Foie Gras

Pate of Foie Gras, served with its own jelly, Tossed leaf salad and melba toast


Conift de Voalille , wonton de Canard

Home smoked chicken ballotine and wonton of duck confit, Served with a compote of fresh orange


Paupiette de sole Limande

Paupiette of sole served with pink grapefruit , served with a light saffron sauce


Sorbet de champagne

Champagne sorbet served with passion fruit and a sweet balsamic glaze


Longe D’agneau roti

Roast Loin of Lamb, ragout of sweetbread and a light rosemary jus


Trio de Fromage

Tipperary mature Cashel Blue, West Cork Milleens, Cork Hegarty’s cheddar



Tart au Citron, vanilla ice-cream and marinated strawberries



Reservations can be made with O’Donovans Off Licence Head Office only and are €100 per person.

Tickets are limited to 4 per booking and must be pre-paid.

Contact Deirdre or Rose on 021-4296060 for details.


Little Beauty of Marlborough New Zealand WineGeese Tasting Thursday May 16th

Little Beauty Homeland_Summer 2May is a very busy month for WineGeese events and first up is a special tasting with Fleur McCree of Little Beauty, Marlborough, New Zealand

Fleur will retrace her family steps back to Cork in a presentation and tasting of her wines in association with Maurice O’Mahony of Wine Alliance.

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Fleur will talk about her beautiful vineyard in Marlborough and her wonderful Limited Edition wines

The following Limited Edition wines will be tasted on the night . . . . . .

  • Little Beauty Sauvignon Blanc 2010
  • Little Beauty Riesling 2010
  • Little Beauty Pinot Gris 2010
  • Little Beauty Gewurztraminer 2009
  • Little Beauty Pinot Noir 2011

Fleur will also be bring along a very special wine thats made in minuscule quantities and is not even available for sale in Europe

Latitude 51 is the perfect venue for this special tasting and delicious canapés will be served on the night

Thursday May 16th. 7pm Cost: €12

Venue : Latitude 51

Please note : Places are very limited so booking is essential.  

The event is already virtually sold out 

Booking through Latitude 51

Phone : 021 2390219

Email : info@latitude51.ie

Twitter : @Latitude_51

A wonderful evening of wine and the winegeese story with Tomás Clancy


Tomás Clancy travelled the long journey from Dublin to the wine capital of Ireland and captivated the audience for over two hours with his wonderful telling of the history of Ireland’s WineGeese. It was a talk and tasting of two halves. The first half took place in the Crawford Art Gallery where guests tasted the following whites

  • L’Abeille de Fieuzal, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux 2009
  • Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, Napa Valley 2010


From there, we all headed a few yards down the road to the beautiful Cork Opera House where the tale continued and we tasted some lovely reds

  • Chateau De La Ligne, Bordeaux 2008
  • Chateau Leoville Barton, St-Julien, Bordeaux 2004
  • Chateau Musar, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon 2003

The event was sold out completely with everyone getting into the spirit of the occasion. Tomás was such a superb speaker and it was obvious how incredibly knowledgeable he is on the history of the WineGeese and how much he loves the subject. His talk was captivating, educational, funny and effortless. He is such a natural speaker.


We were delighted that Ted Murphy could also join us on the night. Ted’s book “A Kingdom of Wine” is the definitive work on the history of the Irish in the world of wine.

Two of the guests on the night wrote wonderful articles on the evenings events so click on the links below to read them

Article by Billy Lyons

Article By Roz Crowley

The next WineGeese event takes place on Thursday the 16th of May in Latitude 51 where Fleur McCree of Little Beauty New Zealand will talk about and pour her fantastic range of single vineyard wines from Marlborough

Tomás Clancy Wines Revealed !


Well the much anticipated WineGeese event with Tomás Clancy is almost here and there are just a limited number of places available for this wonderful event on Thursday 25th April in the Crawford Art Gallery.

We are delighted to reveal details of the wines that Tomás has personally chosen to show and taste on the night

  • L’Abeille de Fieuzal 2009
  • Chateau Montelena Chardonnay 2010
  • Chateau De La Ligne 2008
  • Chateau Leoville Barton 2004
  • A Mystery Wine – only revealed on the night !

So a fantastic, varied lineup of wines in addition to a wonderful talk by Tomás on the WineGeese and Ireland’s amazing contribution to the world of wine

Full details for bookings are available here

Tomás Clancy, Wine Writer and Presenter of the Irish WineGeese series coming to the Crawford Art Gallery


The Crawford Art Gallery

Up next in our series of WineGeese events, we are delighted to welcome one of Irelands most gifted and respected wine writers and broadcasters to Ireland’s wine capital !

Tomás Clancy, well known Wine Writer and Presenter of the Irish WineGeese series on RTE’s Lyric FM, will talk about the incredible influence that the Irish have had (and continue to have) on the world of wine. He will also guide us on a wine tasting of his personal selection of Irish WineGeese wines. It promises to be a wonderful evening


Tomas Clancy

If you would like to listen to his brilliant four part radio series on the WineGeese, the link can be found on Tomas Clancy’s website here

A special visit deserves a special venue and we are delighted to be hosting this talk and tasting in the Sculpture Galleries Room in the  Crawford Art Gallery in Cork’s City Centre.

Sculpture Galleries Room

Thursday April 25th. 6.30pm Cost: €10

Venue : Crawford Art Gallery

Booking is strongly advised as all events to date have sold out quickly.

To book, please contact Colm McCan on 086 0859034 

or by email on colm@ballymaloe.ie

Wine Tasting by Candlelight in Farmgate Café with Anna Seifried of Seifried Wines, Nelson

On a dark, dreary night with much of Cork under water and the wind tossing umbrellas into the Lee like paper airplanes, one might have been forgiven for opting to stay in by the fire instead of traipsing through the waterlogged streets to a wine tasting. But the allure of a candlelight supper in the atmospheric English Market, which very rarely extends its opening hours to the public after 6pm, was too enticing for words.

Destination: the homely but classy Farmgate Café for the fourth event in the “Bringing the Wine Geese Home” series, this time in association with Classic Drinks. The series spans the globe and this edition invited Nelson-based Kiwi, Anna Seifried of Seifried Wines, home to rekindle her Irish connections as part of The Gathering 2013. As Sales and Marketing Manager, Anna is an integral part of the family-run winery, and with her auburn hair and freckles, she certainly fit the bill as Seifried’s Irish “Wine Geese” representative.

After the fantastic Lynch-Bages tasting with Jean-Charles Cazes in Ballymaloe earlier in the month, Anna had a tough act to follow, but she and her wines met, and surpassed, all expectations. On arrival in the gallery in the English Market, home to the lovely Farmgate Café, we were ushered onto the balcony where we were served market canapés and a glass of Seifried Pinot Gris – the first of the four wines in the tasting, and a fantastic start to the evening – full, fragrant and exotic, brimming with tropical fruits, lime and a touch of pepper and the faintest suggestion of sweetness. It had me on the first sniff!

There was quite a buzz on the balcony –a packed house in spite of the storm howling outside. After some mingling and light-hearted banter about the inclement weather, we were directed to our tables. I love the communal seating arrangements at these events as it always makes for lively dinner conversation and gives ample opportunity to compare tasting notes.

First up, Castletownbere Crab Crumble – creamy, delicate and delicious, followed by a beautifully fresh Pea and Mint Soup. Both courses found their perfect partner in the second wine: Aotea Sauvignon Blanc. Bursting with aromas of passion-fruit and grapefruit backed up by lively acidity, this wine cut through the creaminess of the crumble and drew out the fresh green flavours in the soup. “Herbaceous, but in a positive way” was the general consensus at our table. A show of hands revealed that this was a big hit amongst our fellow diners too.

The clinking of glasses prompted a hush as Steve Dwyer of Classic Drinks thanked everyone for coming and welcomed Anna to Cork. He told us that Seifried’s wines held a special place for him, as they were one of the very first wines to be imported by Classic Drinks. It was then over to Anna to bring us on a short journey of her family history.


Seifried Pinot Gris, Aotea Sauvignon Blanc, Seifried Pinot Noir, Sweet Agnes Riesling

In her engaging, relaxed style, Anna informed us that her family has been making wines since the early ‘70s when her father, Austrian-born Hermann moved to New Zealand, married Agnes – Anna’s mother – and together put their dream in motion to set up a vineyard in New Zealand’s sunshine capital, Nelson. Hermann had studied winemaking in Germany and worked for the KWV in South Africa for a while before heading to New Zealand to make fruit wine for the Apple and Pear Marketing Board. Recognising the potential that Nelson had to produce great wines, they started on their wine-making mission to put Nelson on the map and their efforts can largely be accredited with pioneering the South Island’s wine industry.

From humble beginnings her parents worked night and day, often struggling to put food on the table, to build the now world-famous Seifried Estate, with the first plantings in 1973 and the first harvest in 1976. Their first vintage performed extremely well at a national wine competition in Waitangi. Since then the company has attracted a lot of interest amongst major drinks corporations who are keen to acquire it. But the family has held firm and Seifried remains to this day a family-run business in its truest form. Anna’s two siblings lead the Seifried winemaking team, with her brother Chris running the day-to-day cellar operations as chief winemaker and her sister Heidi splitting her time between a dental practice and working as assistant winemaker to Chris. As Anna says, growing up amongst the vines could only have one possible outcome.

Nelson wines are less-well known than their South Island counterparts from Marlborough, yet they consistently win more awards than any other region in New Zealand. It’s located at the top of the South Island, west of Marlborough and sees an average of 2,700 hours of sunshine a year – by far the sunniest area in New Zealand. Aromatic varieties fare particularly well here: Riesling, Pinot Gris and Gewürztraminer. There’s an artisan approach to winemaking in Nelson that shows in its wines. This was certainly evident in the third wine of the evening: a beautifully-crafted Pinot Noir with savoury notes reminiscent of a good Burgundy. Unlike the more commercial Pinot’s from New Zealand, the fruit was soft and delicate – not at all jammy – with subtle spicy characters and a barely detectable oak influence. The Farmgate team had cleverly paired it with Slow Roasted Pork from the Market, which just melted in the mouth – together the two  waltzed gracefully over the taste buds. This is what the Farmgate does so well: sourcing the best local ingredients and cooking them expertly but simply, letting the ingredients speak for themselves. Hats off to Susie at Classic Drinks for selecting such a great venue to match these excellent Irish-Kiwi wines!

So, back to why we were all gathered in the Farmgate on a miserable Thursday evening. As you know, the aim of this Gathering initiative is to bring winemakers with Irish connections home from abroad. The name Seifried doesn’t evoke images of emigrants leaving Ireland for pastures new, but Anna informed us there is a connection on both her mother’s and father’s side of the family: her maternal great grandfather, Thomas McCartney, was born in Donegal in 1857. In 1877, at the age of 20 he boarded the ‘Marlbourough’ leaving Ireland for New Zealand. Settling in the North Island he began farming, carried on by his children and grandchildren. Anna’s father, although very much Austrian in his ways, also has some Irish blood running through his veins, linking him back to Kilkenny.

The evening drew to a close in style with a Munster Cheese Board consisting of Hegarty’s Mature Cheddar and Cashel Blue followed by a Carrigeen Moss Pudding with Poached Rhubarb – seasonal and sublime! Both of these local delights called out for something special to match their rich flavours. There was only one wine for the job: award-winning “Sweet Agnes” Riesling. Named after Anna’s mother, “Sweet Agnes” is like an ice-wine, but controversially the late-harvested grapes are frozen artificially, not naturally, and then pressed to yield a concentrated juice, producing an intense, powerful, sweet and vibrant wine, with rich apricot flavours and a delicious spiciness. Naughty, but extremely nice! It’s so delicious, what does it matter how it’s made? What a finish!

And so, sadly the evening came to an end. Anna thanked everyone for coming and invited us all to visit Nelson – she is certainly a worthy ambassador for her region. Was it worth sacrificing a cosy night in by the fire for? Absolutely! The food, the service, the wine and the winemaker were all straight out of the top drawer. And as for the atmosphere – let’s just say, there was a little magic in the air that night!

We’d like to thank Kay, Rebecca, Mirco and all the team at Farmgate Café for organizing a really fantastic night – the food and service were second to none. Thanks to Susie and Steve of Classic Drinks for securing such a great venue and for coaxing Anna to our neck of the woods. Finally, a massive thank you to Anna for coming all this way to be part of The Gathering and for sharing her wonderful wines and family history with us! We hope you will come back to visit us again soon Anna!


Mirco and Rebecca of Farmgate Cafe with Anna Seifried (Centre)


Anna Seifried addresses a Packed House in the Cosy Farmgate Cafe, English Market


Susie O’Connor (Classic Drinks), Anna Seifried (Seifried Wines), Beverley Mathews (L’Atitude 51)

All wines tasted available from Classic Drinks as well as others in the Seifried range.

Seifried Wines at the Farmgate Café, English Market, Cork


Seifried Wines at Farmgate Café. English Market. Cork 

Thursday, March 21 at 7:00pm

As part of the “Bringing the Wine Geese Home” programme Farmgate Café, in association with Classic Drinks are delighted to welcome Anna Seifried of Seifried Wines, Nelson, New Zealand to guide us through a presentation and tasting of her wines, with a supper to match! The Seifried family have been making food-friendly award-winning wines since 1976, including rich full Chardonnays, fine Rieslings, zesty Sauvignon Blancs, warm Pinot Noirs and delicious dessert wines.

The Irish connection

Anna’s great grandfather, Thomas McCartney, was born in Donegal in 1857. In 1877, at the age of 20 he boarded the ‘Marlbourough’ leaving Ireland for New Zealand. Settling in the North Island he began farming, carried on by his children and grandchildren.
In 1973 Anna’s mother Agnes married Austrian born Hermann Seifried who shared a dream of making wines in New Zealand’s sunshine capital, Nelson. So, from very small and modest beginnings, Hermann and Agnes, grafting vines late into the night, began the now world famous Seifried Estate – a company devoted to sustainable winegrowing producing the very best wines Nelson has to offer. 136 years later Anna, great granddaughter of Thomas McCartney returns home for the Gathering to rekindle her Irish connection and to share her lively Sauvignon Blancs, warm plummy Pinot Noirs and intensely delicious dessert wines.

Early booking advised.
Tickets: €45 for supper, wine and talk
To book, please contact The Farmgate Cafe on 021 427 8134 or call into the Café