Former Eipic chef to launch solo restaurant
Danni Barry is to launch her first solo venture in Aghalee, Co Antrim, after announcing her departure from the Michelin-starred Eipic last week.
In November she will reopen Clenaghans restaurant, a once popular restaurant which has been closed for two years.
The Downing family closed Clenaghans in 2015 after 20 years in operation. Working with business partners Stevie and Cristina Higginson of Square Bistro in Lisburn, the site is currently undergoing refurbishment.
Speaking to The Caterer, Barry said: "I have always loved the idea of running a country pub with great food - a place for families as well as foodies. Recently, Stevie and Cristina approached me with the opportunity to go into partnership with them at Clenaghans, after I saw the building it was a no-brainer!
"It's really exciting to be involved from the very beginning. Stevie and Cristina already run a well-established busy bistro so as a first timer to all this it's very reassuring to have them beside me."
With Barry at the helm, the menu at Clenaghans will focus on high quality, local and seasonal products.
She added: "We will mix old with new at Clenaghans, so there will certainly be classic pub dishes as well as more innovative ones too. There will be the same focus on great produce, which we are surrounded by, big flavours and good cooking.
We want people to feel comfortable, whether they are popping in for tea or coming for a special meal. The restaurant was very popular in the area before it closed so our aim is to bring that back."
On Clenaghans' twitter account, it has released a Christmas menu which offers three courses for £27 and includes dishes such as: duck sausage with curry, carrot and coriander; onion and cheddar tart with winter leaves; slow cooked venison with glazed root vegetables and red wine; roast squash, chestnut mushrooms, onion dumplings and sage butter; and mulled pear and honey trifle.
Barry worked for restaurateur Michael Deane for three years at his flagship restaurant in the centre of Belfast. During that time, she won and retained a Michelin star for the restaurant and was named Ireland's Chef of the Year 2017.
Alex Greene has been appointed head chef of Eipic, taking over Barry's role. He began his cooking career at Deanes in 2007 and has since worked at Petrus by Gordon Ramsay; Claridge's; and the Cliff House in Ardmore.
Deane follows a star to Belfast city centre >>
James Devine crowned National Chef of the Year 2017 >>
National Chef of the Year 2017 winner profile: James Devine >>
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