Katy Ward and Anne Barry both attended the Ballymaloe 12 Week Certificate in September 2012. Since then they have been busy setting up and running their own boutique Catering and Events service in Dublin called Smyth and Barry. Here is their story.
We met on the September 2012 course. We both come from different vocational backgrounds (and generations!), Anne in nursing and Katy in law. Anne is a seasoned hostess who spent a period living in the UK working and rearing her family. Katy has always loved baking and entertaining and had a grá to do something more creative for a living. On our first day in Ballymaloe, Darina went around the room to enquire whether we were doing the course with a view to making a career from food or for life skills. I am not sure that either of us really believed that 18 months later we would be running our own catering business!
After leaving Ballymaloe, Anne returned to her previous role and Katy went on to work in the kitchen in Avoca in Kilmacanogue and with a Cookery School in Dublin. We had kept contact and when a number of private catering gigs for friends and family came about we sought out each other for advice, inspiration and encouragement. These small gigs worked out better than we ever could have imagined and most importantly we found that we worked really well together and Smyth and Barry was born.
We work out of our own purpose built small commercial kitchen in Dublin. Our food is simple but unique. Our food is inspired by our many and varied experiences while grounded in our training at the world renowned Ballymaloe Cookery School in East Cork. For us there is nothing better than the act of sharing a meal and conversation. We are full service caterers and we love nothing more than working with our clients to host beautiful, styled catered events. These gatherings are our speciality.
With our private chef service we ask you to open your kitchen door and allow us to create a menu for you. Your home is the perfect gathering space. Our team will oversee service of your chosen menu and ensure the smooth running of your event. Every small detail counts.
We also provide a bespoke lunch and dinner hamper service. We will deliver to your door everything you need to bring the art of gracious entertaining to your own table. From a low key intimate dinner for two to broader scale weddings, parties and corporate events, we will embrace them all.
As a whole the Ballymaloe Cookery School experience is superb. The practical experience, direct contact with talented and inspiring chefs and cooks, and boundless creativity remain a source of inspiration to us today. Our ethos is grounded in our Ballymaloe experience, from sourcing local and seasonal ingredients to setting a beautiful table. We did not know each other before we set off to Ballymaloe, but our time at the school allowed us to foster a friendship first and a business partnership second. While we share different tastes and experiences, we share a common set of food values shaped by our time in Ballymaloe.