Did you know that you can dine at LYIT Killybegs, enjoy supreme cuisine by Ireland’s future chefs and pay just a fraction of usual restaurant/cafe prices?

Chef Academy at Killybegs campus, Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT), is delighted to announce the reopening of the fully serviced Millennium Room Training Restaurant.

With innovative menus that change weekly and use the finest local and international ingredients, the public are invited to immerse themselves in the culinary delights of the northwest, served by students at the fraction of the cost of a usual meal.

I was lucky to be invited to the campus to sample the Cafe Porto menu, and I was impressed at every bite. We toured the campus to see lecture rooms that are purpose built for real-life learning. From an in-house bar, to a hotel room setting, we saw how students learn in practical, rather than theoretical environments.

Nicola Dunnion, Fiona Kelly, Victoria Wilson, Henry Doohan, Sharon Anderson, Sue Glackin, Micheal and Gracie Brennan and Rachel McLaughlin

Little Gracie and Micheal Brennan make the beds in an Accommodation & Facilities training room
Culinary Arts training at LYIT Killybegs with Lecturer Tim Dewhirst

The hands-on training extends to the on-campus Café Porto and the Millennium Room, where students build industry confidence and finesse through real-life service.

Our ‘light’ lunch in Café Porto was a feast of flavour and delightful presentation. I had a delicious smoothie, a melt-in-the-mouth fresh goats cheese tart and a patisserie-pretty dessert to boot. And the cost for visitors? Just €5!

Cafe Porto guests Micheal and Gracie Brennan, Sue Glackin, Sharon Anderson, Victoria Wilson, Henry Doohan and Fiona Kelly
Goats cheese tart with spinach, grapes and red onion relish
Dessert at Cafe Porto
Hotel, Restaurant & Resort Management Student Dylan shows his skills with an Irish Coffee demonstration using Donegal’s Silkie Whiskey
Dylan’s Irish Coffee using Donegal’s Silkie Whiskey

Students of the Culinary Arts and Hotel, Restaurant and Resort Management programmes undertake this activity as part of their learning during term time. They deliver a range of menu options over lunch time. Diners can choose in delighting their taste buds with an expansive three course menu in the Millennium Room Training Restaurant or nibble on a light lunch in Café Porto.

Sue Glackin, Sharon Anderson, Henry Doohan, Fiona Kelly and Victoria Wilson enjoying lunch at Cafe Porto

Chef Academy Killybegs provides a working pathway for culinary and hospitality students to get a hands-on understanding of working life in a kitchen and restaurant. “The practical modules in the courses will allow you to gain hands-on experience in all the key hospitality departments and roles. You will experience the pace of working in live service environments, the unique pressure of the kitchens, and the attention to detail needed in the food and beverage operations and rooms division departments,” says Patrick Brennan, lecturer. 

Past graduate, Stacey Meehan is currently based in the Redcastle Oceanfront Hotel and Spa felt the live service aspects of the course really gave her a taste of the real-life world of work, “Although live service in the programme is on a much smaller scale than industry, I felt that it gave me and my classmates the perfect platform for learning, confidence building, and working within a pressurised environment.”

Nicola Dunnion, Head of Department of Tourism and Joe Molloy Food and Beverage Lecturer with the first year students who were managing Cafe Porto on Wednesday

“Education is the passport to the hospitality future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today. Develop a passion for the art and skills in hospitality, if you do, you will never cease to grow,” says Patrick Brennan and this echoes the dedication to innovative and immersive education in the Department of Tourism and Sport at Killybegs. Throughout its history, it has evolved to keep pace with the growing demands of the hospitality and tourism industry. Bringing together food, business, hospitality, culinary science, and technology has enabled the department to develop as a national centre for innovation through experiential learning.

Don’t miss out, book your place at the Millennium Room Training Restaurant today by calling Donna on 074-9186613. Wednesdays at Café Porto encourage walk-ins with no bookings required. 

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