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A Clare brother and sister, whose wish to bottle the feeling of farm life has led to the county’s first brewery in an 80-year old shed, will be featured at the second annual Bite Food Festival in the RDS between November 18-20.

Bite 2016 is a major food festival, showcasing the best of Ireland’s artisan food and drink producers to huge audiences in the run-up to the Christmas season.

The event will feature top chefs and food experts as well as a huge range of producers, who are there to sell, sample and educate expected crowds of over 20,000 about their unique products.

Western Herd Brewing Company was started a year ago by Ennis siblings Maeve Sheridan and her brother Michael Eustace on their family’s eighth generation farm, after they noticed there was no craft beer being brewed in the county.

Maeve returned home from a finance career in Luxembourg to join forces with civil engineer Michael who had been managing a bar in Dublin during the recession.

“Every time we would visit the farm growing up, we would think ‘if only we could bottle this,” Maeve said.

“The brewery is now in a converted shed built by our great-grandfather over 80 years ago and we aspire to brew beers that embody the charm and character of this idyllic hilltop farm.

“We can’t believe how quickly the four different beers have taken off both by local businesses and some of the one million tourists that came to Clare last year.

“We brew west coast style American beers on the west coast of Clare.

“It is really important to us to maintain our strong Clare connection so every beer has part of the Clare coastline on the label while the names reflect the cultural heritage of our county.”

Western Herd’s Back Beat Wit Bier and Blue Jumper IPA both took silver in the recent Blas na hEireann Irish Food Awards awards, and Bite 2016 will be featuring a large collection of winners from the biggest competition for quality Irish produce.

Bite 2016 will feature an array of wine, beer and spirits demonstrations at the Drinks Masterclass, with experts on wine, spirits, coffee brewing, cocktail and smoothie making and vegetable juicing amongst others. Bite 2016 takes place at the RDS Main Hall from November 18-20.

Full details and booking can be found at www.bitefoodfestival.ie. Ends For a full timetable of free events on the main stage, drinks masterclass and hands on kitchen, please see www.bitefoodfestival.ie.

Bite 2016 Food Festival Main Hall RDS Friday November 18: 11am-7pm Saturday November 19: 10am-6pm Sunday November 20: 10am-6pm.

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