Strabane restaurants cleaned up at the recent Irish Restaurant Awards with three local businesses winning four top awards.

Strabane’s hospitality sector had fantastic success at the Ulster Regional Awards held in the stunning Slieve Russell Hotel, County Cavan on Tuesday 23rd August 2022.

Oysters Restaurant, Patrick Street, scooped two awards under the Tyrone category for Best Customer Service and Caroline Clarke from the business won Best Restaurant Manager.

Tusk, Castle Street, won the Best World Cuisine and The Farmers Home, Railway Street, picked up an award for Pub of the Year. 

Kieran Kennedy, Chair of Strabane BID, said he was delighted that Strabane’s hospitality sector is getting the recognition it deserves.

“We have some excellent places to eat in Strabane and it is brilliant to see them getting the recognition they deserve. This is a great opportunity to celebrate the amazing cuisine and incredible talent we have on our doorstep, not to mention the passionate and marvellous staff who go above and beyond when it comes to customer service.”

Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Cllr Sandra Duffy, said this was a fantastic achievement for the Strabane restaurants.

“Well done to the three local businesses who had great success at the recent Irish Restaurant Awards in Cavan. It’s been a tough few years for businesses following the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly for bars and restaurants, so it is lovely to share some good news and celebrate these brilliant businesses who are obviously going from strength to strength. Congratulations to everyone involved.”

Kevin Clarke, Owner of Oysters Restaurant, commented, “It is always a real honour to be recognised by the prestigious Restaurant Association of Ireland.  Our aim at Oysters, first and foremost, is to offer our clientele a memorable dining experience which is only possible through the diligent efforts of the team that support us. And finally, a huge thank you to the customers who nominate us for these awards. Their validation of what we do is always our driving force.”

Tusk was also keen to acknowledge the hard work of their team and the support of their customers. Dara Guram, Manager of Tusk Restaurant, said, “The support from our customers has been phenomenal and this, in turn, has had a positive impact on our team who strive to make the restaurant the best it can possibly be. This award wouldn’t be possible without them.”

John McGowan, Owner of The Farmers Home, added, “It’s a fantastic achievement for Strabane, to walk away with 4 awards between us is testament to the quality offered here locally. The Farmers Home has a quality team who give their all to the pub and it’s great to see them getting the recognition for their efforts.”

Over 500 restaurants and hospitality business from across Ulster were nominated for one of the prestigious awards. Categories included Local Good Hero, Best Free From, Best Emerging Irish Cuisine, Best Restaurant Manager, Best Wine Experience, Best Café, Best World Cuisine, Best Newcomer, Pub of the Year, Best Casual Dining, Best Hotel & Guesthouse Restaurant, Best Customer Service, Best Gastropub, Best Chef, Best Restaurant and finally a new award category for 2022, Best Sustainable Practices.

John McGowan, Farmers Home, Dara Guram, Tusk Restaurant, and Kevin Clarke, Oysters, pictured with their awards for Pub of the Year, Best World Cuisine and Best Customer Service respectively. Joining the successful trio is Strabane BID Deputy Chair, Michael Kelly.