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'It means the world to me': restaurant bags its first ever Michelin stamp of approval


Ross Lewis, of Chapter One, in Dublin

Ross Lewis, of Chapter One, in Dublin

Ross Lewis, of Chapter One, in Dublin

Ireland has gained a brand new Michelin star - for Dede in Baltimore in West Cork.

This is where Ahmet Dede, who previously held a star at the now-closed Mews, brings a Turkish sensibility to modern food based on the very best local produce.

"This means the world to me," said Dede, clearly emotional as he spoke to the host of the virtual awards ceremony for the Michelin Guide Great Britain and Ireland 2021, Davina McCall, from Turkey.

No Irish restaurants lost their Michelin stars - even though Derry and Sally Anne Clarke of L'Ecrivain had asked Michelin not to include their restaurant in this year's guide as they have to vacate the building by the end of March.

Aniar in Galway, which was closed for the whole of 2020 bar a couple of days at the start of the year, kept its star - a relief for chef and restaurateur JP McMahon.

Michelin awarded three of its new Green stars - recognising a commitment to sustainable gastronomy - to three restaurants in the west of Ireland: Inis Meáin Restaurant & Suites in the Aran Islands, Kai in Galway's West End, and Loam in Galway city.

Ireland also gained four new Bibs Gourmand, recognising good food at affordable prices. These are Goldie in Cork city, Table Forty One in Gorey, Spitalfields in Dublin city centre, and Volpe Nera in Blackrock, Co Dublin.

Several restaurants including Clanbrassil House and Circa in Dublin, and Two Cooks in Kildare, alongside others which have closed permanently, did not retain their Bibs. This does not necessarily mean a drop in standards, and may be down to pricing.

Ross Lewis of Chapter One, Dublin, for whom Ahmet Dede worked in the early days of his career, received the Chef Mentor award, an accolade welcomed by chefs in Ireland. Speaking from his home in Dublin, he thanked the guide for "a huge honour".

At House at the Cliff House Hotel in Ardmore, Ian Doyle, who took up the position only last spring, retained the star previously held by Martijn Kajuiter.


"The inspectors decided I hadn't messed things up too badly," Doyle said.

For the first time in its history, the Michelin Guide has gone digital and there will be no printed guide.

Some had questioned whether there was any point publishing a guide when pubs and restaurants have been closed for so many months.

"The answer is simple," said a Michelin spokesperson.

"We want to promote the industry as much as we possibly can. We want to celebrate the many amazing restaurants in Great Britain and Ireland and all the hugely talented chefs and restaurateurs."