Christina McCauley - Coopershill House
Coopershill House has been in the O’Hara family since it was built in 1774 and Simon O’Hara is the 7th generation to call it home. His wife, Christina McCauley, born and raised in Strandhill, Co. Sligo, is the accomplished chef of this magnificent property and she is responsible for the incredible food enjoyed by all who visit. Christina trained under Darina Allen at the Ballymaloe cookery school, before moving back to Sligo to lead the kitchen at Coopershill. Christina is passionate about fresh, locally produced food, and as the house is fortunate to be situated at the centre of a 500-acre estate and with its own vegetable and fruit gardens, her dishes are seasonal and bursting with amazing flavours.
We caught up with Christina to find out about her favourite ingredients, food memories and more…
1. You're stranded on a desert island. What five foods would you want with you? What would you make?
Loin of Coopershill Venison, Garlic, Drumshambo Gunpowder Gin, Coopershill Raspberry Vinegar, and plenty of organic salad leaves.
A simple, flambéed venison loin steak with some lovely dressed leaves on the side… and hoping it’s an island with an olive tree!
2. I know locally sourced ingredients are very important to the restaurant. How do you choose your suppliers?
A lot of our suppliers are around a long time and are very good at what they do. We are involved in local food initiatives and being producers of venison ourselves, have our ear to the ground when it comes to finding local suppliers preferring to go direct to the producer to build up that relationship.
3. Where do you go when you want to eat at a restaurant?
The Cottage restaurant in Jamestown is always a favourite.
4. What is your favourite food memory?
Waking up early to go picking field mushrooms, bringing them home to cook in butter and eat on toast
5. What do you most love about your job?
The variety and continuous learning plus the smile on people’s face, as they taste something they really enjoy!
6. What is your favourite ingredient?
About Coopershill House
The setting is magical. Nestled in the center of a 500-acre private estate of mature hardwoods, deer pastures and our own river, privacy at this country house is total. Inside, the warm welcome, open fires and incredible cooking are complemented by large, bright bedrooms and oh so comfy beds. Built in 1774, Coopershill has been the family home to 8 generations of the O'Hara's and is in immaculate condition. This country house is the perfect base for exploring the stunning North West of Ireland. Links golf, walking, W.B. Yeats country, megalthic tombs and much more are a short drive away.
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