Craving for an authentic Clonakilty Black Pudding? If you are, don’t worry. You are not alone. The owner of an Irish cafe in Toronto, Canada, is doing her best to bring in this famous Irish breakfast fare to the North American country and let Irish expats suffering from homesickness enjoy a taste of home.
According to Maeve McCarthy, who owns and runs The Pantry, many of her patrons have been asking her to serve Black Pudding as part of her breakfast menu. “If I was given a dollar for every time I get asked for Clonakilty Black Pudding, I’d be rich,” she said. However, it looks like it would still take some time before she could answer the requests of her loyal customers as there is still a ban on Irish meat imports due to the previous foot and mouth disease crisis.
Just recently, she wrote to Simon Coveney, Canada’s minister for agriculture, asking him why the Canadian government has yet to lift the embargo. Ms McCarthy said the minister is “working on it.” So for those who are craving for an honest to goodness Clonakilty Black Pudding, you have to wait or try other scrumptious Irish breakfast options at The Pantry.
Ms McCarthy hailed from Bantry, Co Cork. Growing up, she had spent many weekends helping make food for the guests at her grandmother’s bed and breakfast. She moved to Toronto in her early 20s after spending a summer in Boston. Her friend has just opened an Irish pub and offered her a job.
After two and half years of working for her friend, Ms McCarthy left to manage another pub. She had managed to expand its catering service, thanks to her Irish contacts. Eventually, she decided to set up her own business. With the help of her sister, she opened McCarthy’s Irish Pub, which has been a huge hit among Canadian locals and Irish expats.
Despite the success of her pub, Ms McCarthy has yet to rest on her laurels. Realising that there were no Irish-style delis in Toronto, she went on to establish The Pantry, which was a success from the get-go. Aside from serving food that many Irish expats are missing from home, her cafe has also turned into an outlet for Irish food makers to sell their goods.
Ms McCarthy said she’s happy that she has become an ambassador for Irish fare, but if there’s one thing that would make her even happier, it has got to be the lifting of the ban on Irish meat imports.