Monday 18 December 2017

The pleasure list: When all the city is a catwalk

Strut your stuff: Dublin Fashion Festival fronted by Pippa O'Connor, is putting Ireland on the fashion map.
Strut your stuff: Dublin Fashion Festival fronted by Pippa O'Connor, is putting Ireland on the fashion map.
Jazzed up: lobster in Dalkey

The Dublin Fashion Festival began a decade ago, an ambitious bid to position Ireland's capital alongside cities such as Paris, Milan, London, as well as encouraging our indigenous-but-still-fledgling fashion scene.

Success followed upon success, so that now, the week-long event - taking place this year from September 7 to 13 - unites over 250 retailers, restaurants, bars and hotels across the city in a celebration of all things style and fashion.

This year, the lively programme includes an exhibition of young Irish designers at Meeting House, Temple Bar, the H&M Autumn/ Winter collection show, a seminar for fashion professionals hosted by Twitter, the Young Designer of the Year fashion show at Bank of Ireland College Green, an Oasis mobile shop, the Canon Young Fashion Photographer of The Year award, and a whole host of on-street fashion shows, including a fashion picnic at Castle Market. This is fashion at its best - supportive, local, concerned, as well as glittering and glam; the kind of grass-roots encouragement without which our young designers, photographers, models and craftspeople cannot flourish.


Happy birthday to a local hero (oh, and free coffee)

Foodgame on South Lotts Road was opened five years ago on September 4, by Ross Staunton and Amy Hamilton, fuelled by the desire to serve well-sourced, fresh, interesting,  home-cooked food and excellent coffee to the folk of the neighbourhood. And that is exactly what they have done, growing and evolving steadily from a small but loyal customer base, to become one of the lynchpins of a thriving local food scene. Breakfast starts at 8am, with, perhaps, French omelette on toast, or the Foodgame bacon and egg pie, followed by lunch options that include a sandwich with Gubbeen chorizo, hummus and pickled cucumber, soups, quiches, superfood salads, and a variety of freshly-baked scones and pastries. No wonder regulars love the place, and foodies travel from afar. To celebrate five great years, Foodgame are giving free coffee all day on September 4 to their very loyal customers, and allowing said customers to donate what they like to Aware.


Jazzing-up the taste of lobster

You've got to hand it to Dalkey, far from resting on its laurels as a celeb-rich, exclusive and highly desirable urban seaside village, it is ever-alert to the possibilities of local businesses banding together to create something fun and attention-grabbing.

The Dalkey Book Festival is already a seriously-regarded, heavy-hitting event, and now it is the turn of seafood and jazz. The final day of the Dalkey Lobster Festival is today, so a last chance to enjoy the clever combination of simply delicious food with fantastic music.

Phil Coulter opened the festival with an exclusive concert, but really, this is all about taking life as it comes, wandering through Castle Street, eating lobster in a variety of forms, including BBQ-ed, Indian-spiced and in a burger, and listening to the sounds of Jamie Duff, Paddy Sherlock, Russell Smyth and many more. The locals will be out in full force, interspersed with merry visitors from all over the country.


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