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Monday 16 July 2018

Rachel Allen restaurant apologises to wild mushroom company and patrons after incorrect menu

Rachel Allen
Rachel Allen
Claire Fox

Claire Fox

Rachel Allen's restaurant in Cork city has apologised to the owner of a wild mushroom company after incorrectly stating on their menus that they served their mushrooms.

Mark Cribbon of Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms, Co Limerick told that he visited Rachel Allen's restaurant, 'Rachels', in Cork last weekend and saw that his mushrooms were listed as a Ballyhoura Mushroom Risotto.

He said that he spoke to employees at the restaurant and told them that he didn't supply mushrooms to their restaurant.

"I told them that I didn't supply mushrooms to their restaurant," he recalled.

A spokesperson from Rachel's issued a statement apologising to customers and to Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms for the mislabeling.

They explained that they had sourced the Ballyhoura mushrooms from a market when they updated their menu in July and had been trying to establish a direct supply in the meantime.

"After approximately three weeks, we were advised by Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms that they would not be in a position to supply us for at least another three weeks, so we asked our vegetable wholesaler to provide us with an alternative source of cultivated wild mushrooms instead.

"Although it was our firm intention to revert to using Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms again once we could source a supply, we should have changed our menu to reflect this, but unfortunately due to a breakdown in communications internally, this did not happen.

"We would like to apologise unreservedly to any customers who may not have been advised that the mushrooms were not Ballyhoura Mushrooms and to all at Ballyhoura Mountain Mushrooms. The mushrooms used in our risotto are cultivated wild mushrooms and we have now removed all reference to Ballyhoura Mushrooms."

Mark said that this isn't the first time that his product has been stated as being part of a dish on a well-known restaurant's menu when he wasn't supplying to them. He has reported all claims to the Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) but has had very little satisfaction.

"They don't seem to do anything. I've reported nine or ten cases and nothing has been done. One Director told me that I should view it is a 'compliment' when this happens," claimed Mark.

In a statement released by FSAI regarding Ballyhoura Mountain Mushroom's complaint about Rachel's, it said that they were "reviewing the complaint".

"It is important to note that the Ballyhoura district extends to cover the areas of East Limerick and North Cork where there are a number of mushroom gatherers. The FSAI follows up on all queries and complaints and will use its legislative powers where it deems appropriate to safeguard and protect consumer health and interests."

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