My Weekend: Raising a glass 

Franciscan Well marketing manager Kate Clancy chats about the venue’s upcoming Cask Ales & Strange Brew Fest
My Weekend: Raising a glass 
Kate Clancy of the Franciscan Well.

Franciscan Well marketing manager Kate Clancy chats about the venue’s upcoming Cask Ales & Strange Brew Fest and tells us how she likes to spend her weekends.

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I had a memorable childhood, growing up in Midleton, the home of Jameson Whiskey, with three fantastic sisters and my amazing mum.

Growing up, I loved art and completed a fine arts degree at Galway University, in 2011. Galway is such a great city for embracing the arts, so I continued to live there, creating ceramic prices and taking part in local exhibitions. After a couple of years of travelling, my grá for Cork pulled me back and I started my Hdip in PR and marketing in CIT, before completing a level 6 in digital marketing in the College of Commerce. It was great to get an insight into these areas of business, but event management was the area I most enjoyed.

When I was finished college, the opportunity came up with the Franciscan Well bar, when they were looking for a tour guide, as well as someone to support their social media platforms. I jumped at the opportunity and I’m so glad that I did.

I’ve been working with the Franciscan Well bar now for three years, as their marketing manager, and still find it one of the most rewarding industries I’ve ever worked in. There is a real sense of community within the craft beer scene in Ireland and it’s one I am very proud to be involved in.

Over the years, I’ve run key events, such as our Cask Ales & Strange Brew Fest, where we celebrate cask-conditioned ales from a variety of Irish brewers and also showcase their growing experimentation and their ability to challenge the norms of brewing (January 30 to to February 1); our Easter Beer Fest, October Beer Fest, and I have been given the platform to run Ireland’s only FemAle Fest, a festival where I get to highlight and celebrate the women involved in brewing and distilling in Ireland.

When I’m not in work, I love to hike: I recently just finished the Camino, the French Way, and I’m planning on walking Machu Picchu in September of this year.

What is your ideal way to spend a Friday night?

Heading back to my home in Midleton, stopping in SuperValu for junk food, and watching the Late Late Show with my mum. (I might even be lucky enough to get a stew, too.)

Lie-ins or up with the lark?

Can I say both? On Saturday mornings, I like to get up early and go to the Midleton market to meet some friends. They have fantastic food stalls, but I especially love the pâté stall. On Sundays, I’m all about the lie-ins and Netflix.

Does work creep into your weekend at all?

Fortunately, we have a very busy bar here on North Mall, so, yes, yes, it does. We have a manager Whatsapp group that never seems to stop. Anyone who works in social media knows that it’s hard to find time to switch off and I look after our social media accounts for both the Franciscan Well bar and Monk, our cocktail bar. However, you won’t catch me on a Sunday, as my phone is switched off. When we have festivals running, like the Cask & Strange Brew Fest, I’ll work long days all weekend.

If money was no object, where would you head to on a weekend city break? And who would you bring with you?

A long weekend break to New York in October. I’d pick my three sisters; we’d shop ’till’ we dropped.

Closer to home, is there some place you like to head to recharge the batteries?

Living and working in the city, I’d happily escape for a week in east Cork. It has fantastic beaches, such as Inch and White Bay, amazing food, The Sage and Farmgate, and places to visit: Ballycotton, Shanagarry, and Ballymaloe.

Do you like to catch up with family/friends at the weekend?

I try and hang out with my sisters and their kids as much as I can. I also like to head out with friends on a Saturday night, either to the local pub or to one of the many amazing restaurants in Cork. Sundays, I like to cook and get ready for the week ahead.

Do you get to indulge any hobbies? Even as a spectator?

I like to go to yoga once a week. It helps me to unwind and relax and I’ve the headspace app for mindfulness on my phone, which I try to use once a day. Cooking would be a huge hobby of mine. I love to pick different dishes that I have never cooked before and spend the day getting the ingredients in the English Market and cooking over a bottle of red. Other hobbies would be walking, photography, and, occasionally, I knit.

Entertain or be entertained?

I like to entertain. I love having friends and family around to the house and I’d keep it simple, maybe a nice pasta dish or curry, depending on what we’re drinking.

We have so many places to eat out in Cork: where are your go-to spots for coffee/lunch/special meal?

After Cork being named as a top global food destination for 2020 by ‘Eater’ and being so proud that our pizza bar on site, Pompeii Pizza, got a mention, I’ve decided to change up where I’m going to eat this year and try all 22 places that were listed. Over the weekend, I went to Good Day Deli and it was the best brunch I’ve had in Cork. However, my usual haunts for coffee would be Cork Coffee Roasters; for lunch, maybe Loving Salads; and for dinner, The Greenroom/Sage, in Midleton.

Sunday night comes around too fast.. how do you spend it?

Cooking, watching movies, drinking tea, and filling hot water bottles.

What time does your alarm clock go off on Monday morning?

I don’t start until 10am, but my alarm goes off at about 7am. I try to get to the gym before work and get in a nice coffee and breakfast.


The Franciscan Well hosts The Cask Ales & Strange Brew Festival, from January 30 to February 1.

The festival celebrates cask-conditioned ales from a variety of Irish brewers and also showcases their ability to challenge the norms of brewing, by hosting a range of special brews, using curious and interesting ingredients.

Lough Gill, Dot Brew, West Cork Brewery, and 9 White Dear are just some of the breweries at the festival, with over 20 cask engines rotating a range of brews. All breweries attending will also compete in the Beoir Cask Competition, which will be judged by the National Beer Enthusiasts’ Club on Saturday, February 1.

Because of the collaboration between Franciscan Well & Jameson, in creating Caskmates, there will be a whiskey-and-beer pairing session on Saturday, February 1, at 4pm.

There will also be wood-fired pizzas from Pompeii, cocktails from the MONK bar, and live entertainment.

Admission is free and doors open at 5pm on Thursday, January 30, and 1pm on Friday, January 31, and Saturday, February 1.

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