JUST A year ago, Deirdre Waddock and Garrett Bradshaw put the finishing touches to their labour of love, 'The Pigs Tale' restaurant at 95A Main Street, Gorey, but the story didn't end there.
Over the past year, they have developed and grown their business into a successful and popular eaterie, as locals and visitors alike keep coming back for more.
At the heart of the ethos of 'The Pigs Tale' is quality – quality of food and quality of service. Few restaurants can say their head chef went out hunting for what's now on the menu, or that the owners reared the pigs for the table themselves.
Even as we spoke to Garrett last week, he was busy preparing the venison for the kitchen. ' We make our own sausages, burgers, black pudding and much more,' he said. ' We rear our own pigs, and then they are killed in Christy Byrnes in Camolin, and we do pretty much everything butcher-wise ourselves after that.'
A speciality dish at 'The Pigs Tale' is the Pork Belly, which has evolved several times during the year, and now resembles a tower of pork, with braised and shredded belly and black pudding layered on top of each other. It's something to behold!
Whether it's for lunch or dinner, you'll find a tempting range of dishes from beef and lamb, to chicken, venison, pheasant, rabbit, wood pigeon, fish, vegetables, and of course pork. They describe their menu as 'Mediterranean style cooking with an Irish flair'.
They also cure their pork to make air dried ham, chorizo, salami, pancetta and coppa, and some of this charcuterie won't be ready for another year.
One person who's already looking forward to this is restaurant critic Paolo Tullio who visited 'The Pigs Tale' in its first four months of opening, and gave a very favourable review in the IrishIndependent.
'We've been very lucky,' said Garrett. 'We opened during a recession, but business has been really good.'
'We're very involved in the business,' he added. 'We're here all the time and we meet the customers first hand, as we have an open kitchen and people often come up and look for recipes or give feedback.'
Garrett, a Dublin native, came to Gorey via Dingle, while Deirdre is a Gorey native. She heads up the hard working front-ofhouse team, while Garrett's mostly found over a hot stove in the kitchen.
'We have a very hardworking team, both in the kitchen and on the restaurant floor, which we are grateful for,' said Deirdre, 'we want people to be as passionate about the restaurant as we are.'
'The Pigs Tale' is a story that's still being told. 'We try to do something new every day, and we always try to improve on everything that goes on the plate,' said Garrett. 'We're nearly always booked out every Saturday night, and early booking is advisable.'
The next few weeks will be busy, as the team have put together two mouthwatering Christmas Party menus, and bookings for parties of up to 70 people can be catered for in the large restaurant. Advance bookings are highly recommended. The menus are available for viewing on www.thepigstale.ie .
They will celebrate their first anniversary with a special night for local businesses invited customers at the end of November, where people will get the opportunity to sample tasters of what the menu has to offer.
'This is our home, and we treat people as such,' said Garrett. 'We want to welcome them in and ensure they have an enjoyable time with us. I think the number of repeat customers is testimony to the fact we're doing something right.'
'We're doing something different and it's so reasonably priced for what we do,' he concluded. 'We always aim to be the best that we can be.'
Call 053 9484440 for more information or to book. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or follow them on Facebook.
The current opening hours are: Monday 5 p.m. - 9 p.m.; Tuesday 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Wednesday 12:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Thursday 12:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Friday 12:30 p.m. – 10 p.m.; Saturday 12:30 p.m. – 10 p.m.; Sunday 12:30 p.m. – 9 p.m.