TONIGHT at Cork Business Association’s (CBA) 65th annual president’s dinner and awards ceremony, 33 finalists within 11 categories will find out who will be awarded accolades.
Over 37,000 public votes, along with a judging panel, helped to choose the winning Cork businesses, which will be appreciated and applauded at the Vienna Woods Hotel by their peers and members of the public.
Along with the 11 public categories, there are three additional categories decided by a panel of judges.
Newstalk broadcast legend and entrepreneur Bobby Kerr will be the MC for the evening.
Each year Cork’s top hotel chefs work with award-winning local producers to create a ‘Taste of Cork’ menu in collaboration with CBA director Claire Nash and the chosen venue for the event.
The executive head chefs chosen for this year’s dinner are Shane O’Brien of Hayfield Manor, Chris O’Sullivan of Cork International Hotel, Kevin Brady from Trident Hotel Kinsale, Meeran Manzoor from The Blue Haven in Kinsale, and Aidan O’Driscoll from Cork’s Vienna Woods Hotel.
The CBA president’s dinner, which is almost sold out, will help raise funds for the Irish Red Cross Ukraine crisis appeal.
Guests will also hear from newly elected CBA president Kevin Herlihy, of Herlihy’s Centra Group, on his plans for the city. There will also be a host of entertainment on the evening.
“This is our third year of collaboration between the finest and most talented chefs in Cork in presenting the Taste of Cork menu on Saturday,” said Mr Herlihy.
“It’s so great to see the hospitality sector come together in Cork and prepare Cork’s finest produce.”
He said the awards “are a celebration of Cork business in general and the Cork business community that are driving the Cork economy”.
“It’s a celebration of employers and employees,” he said.
“The Cork Business Association has been the voice of Cork business for the last 65 years and we lobby on behalf of the business community. We help them on the ground, we work with key stakeholders in the city to keep it clean and to keep it safe, and we push forward innovative ideas to the council and other relevant bodies.”
The panel of judges for tonight’s awards include Cork Lord Mayor and Fianna Fáil councillor Colm Kelleher, Moira Grassick from Peninsula Ireland, Mark Deveraux from JCD Group, Niamh Skally from Centra, Visit Cork head Seamus Heaney, Dr Niall O’Keeffe of Cork City’s local enterprise office, Mr Herlihy, and Alan Healy of the Irish Examiner.
The awards — which are run in partnership with sponsors JCD, Centra, and Peninsula, and media partner the Irish Examiner — recognise the outstanding contribution of businesses and individuals working diligently across varied sectors of business in Cork city.