This piece was originally published on LaoisToday on March 2, 2017.
The Laois winners in the Irish Restaurant Awards were announced at a function in the Lyrath Estate in Kilkenny on Wednesday night.
There were county-by-county awards across nine different categories and the winners of each will go forward to an All Ireland stage.
The Leinster winners (with exception of Dublin) were announced on the night with the Ulster, Connacht and Munster winners to be announced at similar events in the coming weeks.
All the winners will now be subject to a mystery guest inspection where they will be assessed on their menu, customer service and overall dining experience from the moment the booking is made until the customer receives the bill.
The All Ireland final of the Restaurant Awards takes place in the Clayton Hotel in Dublin on Monday, May 8.
The Laois winners in full were:
- Best Wine Experience – Castle Durrow
- Best Customer Service – Judge Roy Beans
- Best Newcomer – Kelly’s Steakhouse
- Best Gastro Pub – Treacy’s The Heath
- Best Hotel Restaurant – Ballyfin Demesne
- Pub of the Year – Morrissey’s
- Best Casual Dining – McEvoys Wine and Steak Bar
- Best Chef – Sam Moody, Ballyfin Demesne
- Best Restaurant – Batonis Emo