Litfest 2017 For The Unorganised

Ballymaloe-bound? Among the food stalls and lawn games at?Litfest, there's still a host of main programme events you can nab tickets for, plus plenty of fringe and garden tent fun that's covered by your €5 entry fee. Here's our picks of the weekend...


9.00-10.30 Lens and Larder with Imen McDonnell and Cliodhna Pendergast, The Carrigaun Room @ The Grainstore


Early risers to LitFest will be rewarded with a dreamy presentation from the creative duo behind the inspiring Lens & Larder food photography workshops. Amazingly, it's not sold out yet. Tickets €25.

12.00-12.45 Banter with Jim Carroll: What's On The Chef's Table @ The Garden Tent

If you missed out on the hot tickets for Brian McGinn in conversation at The Grainstore, you can hear the Chef's Table producer and director discuss how to create Netflix's must-watch food series in the intimate Garden Tent. Go early to nab a spot.?

16.15 The Art of Knifemaking @ The Demonstration Stage in The Big Shed


West Cork Renaissance man Fingal Ferguson of Gubbeen Farm in Schull has taken an intrigue in the craftsmanship of knife making to world-class levels. Watch and learn.

23.00 Sing Along Social with Aoife McElwain: Fleetwood Mac v Abba @ The Big Shed Stage

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It's too early to call who will triumph in a raucous sing-off, the contagious and euphoric heroics of ABBA, or the lurching drama of Fleetwood Mac's oeuvre? Either way, get involved.?Stay on for Nialler9's disco, electronic and 80s pop DJ set, and keep fuelled with Ivan Whelan's Midnight Miso (available from 23.00 on Saturday and Sunday, with proceeds going to a very good cause).?



12.00-12.45 Banter with Jim Carroll: Food for Good - Ellie Kisyombe and Michelle Darmody @ The Garden Tent

Inspired to create the Our Table project after witnessing the 'deplorable system of Direct Provision in Ireland?, Michelle Darmody of Dublin's Cafe Cake and Slice and activist Ellie Kisyombe will discuss how food can make social change.?

15.00 Opening Lobster @ The Demonstration Stage in The Big Shed

You can watch all the YouTube videos you like, but there's nothing like learning from (and grilling) an expert in real life. As Stephen Jouin shares Ballymaloe's classic techniques, we'll be nerdily taking notes and squirming just a little bit.?

16:00 Seed sowing with Michael Kelly of GIY Ireland @ The Demonstration Stage in The Big Shed

Ah the disappointment that follows the wild optimism of sowing? an all too familiar feeling. When a seeds fail to germinate, it can be for a whole host of reasons. Michael Kelly is the man to put you on the right path.?


16.00-16.45 Flogging or blogging? @ The Garden Tent

The Irish Food Writers? Guild, chaired by Ross Golden-Bannon and with Caroline Hennessy of Bibliocook and Michael Lee of the Advertising Standards Authority for Ireland will discuss those ever blurring lines. A must for online food followers.?

12.30-13.30 Magical Places with David Prior @ Blue Dining Room at Ballymaloe Cookery School

If you follow @davidprior on Instagram, it's likely you've already had dreary commute interrupted with a dreamy scene taken on David's travels. As contributing editor at Cond? Nast Traveler and Vogue Living, David's curiosity in food produce and food culture means he has a nose for seeking the best tastes, wherever he is in the world. Tickets €16.

The 5th annual food and drinks literary festival takes place this weekend at
Ballymaloe?(May 19-21).?See the full programme of events over at


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