Celebrity chef, Randy Lewis explores the best tastes and sights Derry~Londonderry has to offer

 Celebrity chef and travel enthusiast, Randy Lewis, who describes himself as the ‘Phileas Fogg of food’, has filmed a series of shows highlighting the quality and unique nature of the food and drink stories which abound in the walled city of Derry~Londonderry.

Randy’s LegenDerry Adventure, available to watch on RTE.ie from Tuesday November 2nd, will show him visiting some of the city’s finest food and drink producers before cooking up a feast, using quality, locally produced ingredients, explained Assumpta O’Neill, Visit Derry’s International Brand & Campaigns Manager.

Assumpta said: “Derry~Londonderry’s passion for great tasting food and drink is everywhere: from the local producers, excited to share their authentic products and stories, to the bustling restaurants, craic-filled bars and vibrant street-food scene helping to put new twists on our ancient city’s fascinating food heritage.

“These talented local craftsmen and women, hotels, bars, artisans, chefs, fishermen and farmers, have joined forces under the banner of, LegenDerry Food, to help showcase what’s special about this part of the world and to share their unique stories and passion for great tasting food and drink.   So, choosing just a small sample of these for Randy to try was quite a challenge.”

The Canadian-born chef’s food and drink odyssey featured a tour of the 400-year-old Derry Walls, continued Assumpta.  “Charlene McCrossan from Martin McCrossan City Tours delighted Randy with an informative and fun tour of the city before he visited the Craft Village where he sampled some tea and scones with fresh cream and locally made jams at The Thatched Cottage.

“Randy visited Dart Mountain Cheese where a goat herd supplies milk to produce Meeny Hill Goat, which is a hard cheese aged for at least two months and Meeny Hill Blue, Northern Ireland’s first blue goat’s cheese.  He enjoyed bread making at the White Horse Hotel and even managed to do some urban foraging in St Columb’s Park House before cooking his foodie finds at street food supremo, Lo and Slo BBQ food truck.

“We made sure Randy was introduced to two of our fantastic breweries, including master brewer James Huey’s creations at the Walled City Brewery and Northbound Brewery, which prides itself on crafting natural beers that are unpasteurized, unfiltered, with no artificial additives and bottled fresh on site.”

RTE.ie viewers will see stunning Lough Foyle, famous for its vast array of shellfish, with the Lough Foyle Irish Flat Oyster being the jewel in the Foyles crown, in all its majestic glory.

Assumpta said: “Randy met one of the city’s fishmongers, Brendan Moore and was introduced to some locally caught seafood followed by an exhilarating ride on the Foyle Rocket, with Foyle Venture Cruises, to blow the cobwebs away.”

The RTE.ie programme will also feature Randy taking part in some unique Derry~Londonderry experiences.

Assumpta continued: “Randy got to see our wonderful city from the River Foyle on a stand-up paddle board experience with Far + Wild where he passed under the iconic Peace Bridge.  He had a Tree Trek at Oakfire Adventure where thrill seekers undertake canopy-high tree-to-tree crossings, free fall Tarzan swings and super-fast zips.

“He went glamping at Rise and Shine and The Oaks, where he toasted marshmallows by campfire using local honey and Ukulele chocolate”, concluded Assumpta.

Randy Lewis, said: “My LegenDerry Adventure was an amazing opportunity for me to visit Northern Ireland’s second city.  I was able to discover all that it has to offer from 4 star accommodation to the multicultural menus overflowing with quality, locally produced food and drink, plus immersing myself in some incredible food experiences.

“A real highlight was my visit to Dart Mountain Farm where I got to make my own goats’ cheese which I later paired with beer from one of the city’s two breweries.  The schedule was action packed too with stand-up paddle boarding, zip lining and mountain biking – the city has so much to offer both on and off the water.

“All-in-all my four days in Derry were memorable, feeding the soul and the stomach with history, culture and the best of LegenDerry food.  The people were so open and welcoming and willing to share their stories and their knowledge of all that this vibrant city has to offer.  A must on any bucket list!”

The four-part miniseries also includes footage of Randy visiting Derry~Londonderry’s famous Derry Girls mural and colourful street art.

The online programmes will be aired weekly on RTE.ie from Tuesday November 2nd and then every Tuesday until November 23rd.  The series will also be available to view on Randy Lewis’s Facebook (www.facebook.com/randaddys) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/randaddys) pages.