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The Big Grill Is Back This Month And We've Got The Lowdown On What To Expect

By Megan Cassidy

August 9, 2018 at 7:59am




There's just so much to love about Dublin at this time of year. And one of the highlights of the Dublin summer calendar is just around the corner.

That's right, our fair city will host Europe's largest BBQ festival, The Big Grill, again this year - fresh after being named Irish 'Festival of the Year'.

Now in its fifth year, The Big Grill returns to the leafy surrounds of Herbert Park, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4 from 16th - 19th August 2018.

The Vibe

Chefs, cooks and pitmasters gather from Ireland and beyond at the foodie festival which celebrates the art of cooking with fire and smoke. They'll be joined by over 20,000 visitors who will smell, taste, discover and learn about all kinds of barbecuing, grilling, smoking, vegetables, meats, delicacies and drinks over the course of the four days.

Over 20 restaurants join will join in the fun, with the only rule being they must cook with live fire using natural charcoal and wood only; no gas or electricity.

Street food is at the heart of this year's festival, with the lineup (curated by pitmaster and festival co-founder Andy Noonan) including vendors from New York, Buenos Aires and Birmingham.

The Line Up

Billy Durney brings his award winning Brooklyn Hometown BBQ to Dublin, widely regarded as the best BBQ joint in New York.

Straight from opening London’s hottest new barbecue joint Smokestak, David Carter will showcase his grown up street food barbecue and wood smoked meats.

Nomadic BBQ warrior Andy Stubbs from Low’n’Slow Birmingham will dish up his unique unauthentically authentic Mexican, taking influences from traditional Texas BBQ. Expect lots of tacos, brisket, ribs and barbacoa.

Gráinne O’Keeffe head chef at Clanbrassil House and culinary director of BuJo will bring her charcoal grill skills and burger expertise.

Renowned Irish chef Paul Flynn joins from Waterford on the Sunday bringing a taste of his award winning restaurant and cookery school The Tannery.

He’ll be joined by Fingal Ferguson of Gubbeen Smokehouse who shares his wealth of smoke knowledge and knife making and sharpening skills.

Returning pitmasters include Robin Gill (The Dairy, London), John Relihan, Ramo Bassilo, Jack May and Mark O’Brien. Hunter Gather Cook led by Nick Weston returns with a weekend of wild food, fire lighting and bushcraft themed demos alongside a wild game water wheel rotisserie and the Whole Dexter Steer Roast returns this year, to be served on the final day of the festival.

Jess Murphy from Kai in Galway, fresh from winning ‘Irelands Best Chef 2018’, will join to serve up a vegan-friendly, live-fire veggie feast.

Ramael Scully is back after wowing visitors last summer with his goat rendang and fresh from opening his brand new restaurant Scully St. James.

Two great Cork chefs will join us. Brian McCarthy from Greenes who’s being touring the festivals this summer with his grill and rising star Jack O’Keefe from Cook’s Academy will be sharing their barbecuing expertise at Baste Camp.

Donal Cahill from My Meat Wagon will be with us on the Sunday serving up his smoked meat box with pickles and slaw. Michelin starred chef JP McMahon from Aniar in Galway will be cooking with Heineken Wild Lager dishing up rib eye steak with garlic pesto and roasted hazelnuts, and monkfish with asparagus and woodruff.

And Derek Wolfe, the man behind one of the most mouth water barbecue Instagram accounts ‘Over The Fire Cooking’ is joining in, snapping away all weekend.

What else?

There's so much more than just barbecue food at this festival (although that would be enough for us!)

DJ BBQ, the Big Grill's head of ‘catertainment’ hosts Bastecamp - the smoking hub of the festival bringing barbecue experts and novices together for in-depth butchery, barbecue and smoking workshops.

Nick Solares, professional carnivore from online series Meat Life, returns to feast his way around the festival and host heated chats and interviews with our pitmasters.

Sound good? Further details on the festival and tickets (from €18) for the events are available on the The Big Grill website or check out The Big Grill out on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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