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Clodagh McKenna looks at some of the top Artisan Bakers in Ireland

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Claire Sutton
11:38 Tuesday 26 February 2013

Culinary guru Clodagh McKenna was in again to answer all your questions





Artisan Breads & Bakeries


Artisan bakeries are bakeries that are baking old style breads and cakes that should be made  without the use of preservatives, flour bleach or treatment agents, reducing agents, emulsifiers, enzymes (except those naturally occurring in flour) or crumb softeners.


Sourdough bread product made by a long fermentation of dough using naturally occurring lactobacilli and yeasts. In comparison with breads made quickly with cultivated yeast, it usually has a mildly sour taste because of the lactic acid produced by the lactobacilli.


Arun Bakery, Dublin


Arun Bakery is run by Vlad Rainis, Prague native & Master Baker, out of a business space on North King StreetDublin 7. The majority of bread is sourdough, based on a 4 year starter but they also sometimes use a 40 year old starter.


The selection ranges from, walnut loaves, focaccia, scones, large loaves of sourdough, brioche and cinnamon buns. Also make a range of Blaas ( the soft white bread roll from Waterford ) only they call them Vlaas in plain, red onion, jalapeno and more.


Vlad sells his bread every Saturday at the Honest2Goodness Market in Glasnevin, it can also be ordered by phone, twitter or facebook and collected from the Bakery.


Also stocked in Lilliput Stores, Smithfield, Ennis Butchers Rialto, Nolans in Terenure and Evergreen Camden Street.


Coolfin Gardens Organic Bakery, Offaly


A dedicated organic bakery bakery based in the heart of the midlands, run by Jonas Hein and Layla O’Brien - two people totally dedicated to producing products of the highest quality and taste possible.


Jonas is originally Swiss but has been living in Ireland most of his life, and always missed the delicious breads of home. At Coolfin Gardens Bakery he is recreating these tastes of home with the highest quality organic ingredients and with a nod to the breads his mother used to make. 


Layla O’Brien is the public face of the business as Jonas’s hours are far from sociable, and she can be found manning their market stall in various locations around Galway and the Midlands. 


There organic selection includes delicious yeast loaves crammed with seeds, hearty and distinctive sourdoughs and a large range of wheat-free spelt and rye organic breads.


Layla says, "We set up on our organic smallholding in the Midlands and were recently mentioned in Food & wine magazine's May issue in their top 100 "hot new things of the year" and we were ranked No.1!  We source the finest ingredients from around the world to produce our delicious range of unique breads. Our selection includes delicious yeast loaves crammed with seeds, hearty and distinctive sourdoughs and a large range of wheat free spelt and rye breads.  With the likely event of Farmers markets setting up in Moycullen and Athenry in the coming months there will be a few more locations to purchase this delicious bread."


Stocked in Sheridan’s Cheesemongers Galway and at the following farmers markets:


St. Nicholas’s Market, Galway City, Co. Galway.

An Furan Country Market, Moycullen, Co. Galway.

Kinvara Farmers Market,Kinvara, Co. Galway.

Dun Laoghaire Market, Georges Street, Dun Laoghaire, Co Dublin.

Nenagh Farmers Market, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary.

Lough Boora Organic Farm Box Scheme, Lough Boora Farm, Cloghan, Birr, Co. Offaly 086 2668217

The Organic Store, Main St. Birr, Co. Offaly 057 9125881


Contact details: 087 2045593 / 087 1763913

Email: coolfingardens@gmail.com

We are also available on Facebook - Coolfingardens Organicbakery (friend) and Coolfin Gardens Organic Bakery (business pages)


Arbutus Bakery


Declan Ryan's pioneering bakery is one of the most important artisan businesses in Ireland. He switched people onto sourdough bread when there was none in the market.


Before he started baking bread full time, Ryan was the chef-proprietor of Arbutus Lodge Hotel in Cork and, in 1974, was the winner of Ireland’s first Michelin star.


Declan uses mainly French techniques, having learned his craft first hand from some of France’s best bakers. The French influence has also led Declan to extend his bread range to croissant and pain au chocolat. Like most artisanal food producers Declan uses traditional techniques and uses no chemical additives or improvers.


Declan can be found at farmers markets throughout Cork: Macroom Market, every Tuesday, Mahon Market, Cork every Thursday, Midleton Market every Saturday as well as in many good food outlets nationwide.





Claire Sutton

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