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Thursday, 16th March 2023

Local restaurants through to finals of the 2023 Irish Restaurant Awards

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Emily Carton of the Smugglers Rest in Clogherhead receives her award for Best Restaurant Manager in Louth.

Several eateries in Louth and Meath have won through the county and Leinster stages of the Irish Restaurant Awards 2023 and will now progress to the All-Ireland finals on Monday 15th May in the Clayton Hotel in Dublin.

The food outlets were nominated in 17 different categories by members of the public and, according to the President of the Restaurants Association of Ireland, Paul Lenehan, there were a record breaking 130,000 plus public nominations.

Speaking at the Leinster Awards on Tuesday night, the President of the Restaurants Association of Ireland, Paul Lenehan, said: “The Awards are an opportunity to celebrate the existing, and up and coming talent, in the sector and are a reminder that hospitality is nothing without their dedicated and passionate staff. 

“The Awards continue to showcase the incredible food that is on offer in the cafes, hotels, pubs and restaurants of Ireland. We look forward to welcoming all winners in Leinster to the All-Ireland Awards on 15th May.” 

The Louth and Meath winners in the various categories of the Leinster final which was held in the Killashee Hotel in Kildare on Tuesday 14th of March, were:  

LOCAL FOOD HERO - Sponsored by The Irish Times 

  • Louth – Marita Collier, Drummond House Garlic  
  • Meath - Andrew Ruiter, The Donkey Shed Restaurant, Ashbourne. 

BEST GASTRO PUB - Sponsored by Worldpay from FIS 

  • Louth -The Trinity Quarter, Drogheda
  • Meath -The Lime Kiln Gastropub, Julianstown     

BEST WORLD CUISINE - Sponsored by San Pellegrino 

  • Louth - Sally Cinnamons Bar - Drogheda  
  • Meath - Cinnamon Garden Restaurant, Ashbourne.  
Proprietors of D'Vine Restaurant, Drogheda receive their award for "Best Wine Experience" at the Leinster finals of the Irish Restaurant Awards 2023. 

BEST WINE EXPERIENCE - Sponsored by Bibendum Ireland 

  • Louth - D’vine Bistro & Tapas Bar, Drogheda   
  • Meath -The Winery, Navan.  

BEST SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES - Sponsored by Gas Networks Ireland  

  • Louth - Wildwood Café, Carlingford.
  • Meath - Zucchini’s Restaurant  (Navan)

INNOVATOR OF THE YEAR - Sponsored by Diageo  

  • Louth - Rocksalt Café (Dundalk)   
  • Meath – Tribe Restaurant, Duleek.  


  • Louth - Strandfield Cafe Florist And Grocer, Dundalk. 
  • Meath – Zucchini’s Restaurant, Navan.  


  • Louth – Square Restaurant, Dundalk. 
  • Meath - Inside Out, Slane.
James Austen and Edel Healy of Inside Out in Slane receive the Best Emerging Irish Cuisine Award in Meath.

BEST RESTAURANT MANAGER - Sponsored by Halcyon Group 

  • Louth - Emily Carton, The Smugglers Rest, Clogherhead   
  • Meath - Lareina Quigley, The Vanilla Pod Restaurant At Headfort Arms Hotel   

BEST CAFÉ - Sponsored by Illy 

  • Louth - Rocksalt Café, Blackrock  
  • Meath - Room8  

BEST NEWCOMER - Sponsored by Square 

  • Louth - Stack’d Coffee, Dundalk  
  • Meath - Gourmet Food Parlour  

PUB OF THE YEAR - Sponsored by Peroni 

  • Louth - Russell’s Saloon, Dundalk  
  • Meath – James Griffin Pub, Trim   

BEST CASUAL DINING - Sponsored by Musgrave Marketplace 

  • Louth -The Spotted Dog, Dundalk  
  • Meath -The Central Navan  
Aidan and Glen Ryan of Tribe Restaurant in Duleek receive the 'Innovator of The Year" award for Meath.


  • Louth -The Bay Tree Restaurant & Guesthouse, Carlingford  
  • Meath -The Vanilla Pod Restaurant At Headfort Arms Hotel Townparks  


  • Louth - Dooleys of Edmondstown  
  • Meath - Cinnamon Garden Restaurant  

BEST CHEF - Sponsored by BWG Foodservice 

  • Louth - Ronan Lawless, The Clermont, Blackrock  
  • Meath - Paul McCullagh, Zucchini’s Restaurant, Navan   

BEST RESTAURANT - Sponsored by San Miguel 

  • Louth  - Square Restaurant, Dundalk  
  • Meath - Brabazon Restaurant At Tankardstown House     
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