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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Irish Moiled beef and venison top of menu for Killua Castle’s new restaurant

The ‘Magnificent Moilies’ is a common catch-phrase used to describe Irish Moileds, but nothing could be more magnificent than where a very special herd of Irish Moileds live – Killua Castle in the heart of Ireland in Clonmellon, Co. Westmeath described as one of the most romantic demesnes in Ireland, writes Michelle McCauley.

The former home of Lawrence of Arabia lay in ruins for over 60 years before being restored and brought back to life.

The castle is surrounded by a beautiful green landscape which rises and falls like waves as far as the eye can see.

It is now home to rare breeds such as the Irish Moileds, Jacob sheep, old Irish Goats and parkland deer, as well as chickens, all reared in a nature-inclusive manner.

The Sangines-Krause family, who has gone to great lengths to restore the castle to its former glory by piecing together its history to make it as authentic as it would have been when first built, own Killua Castle.

Irish Moiled cattle

The herd purchased a number of females in the online Magnificent Moilie Sale through auctioneers Harrison & Hetherington.

Anthony Gilsenan farm manager at Killua Castle, also acquired one of the best stock bulls he could buy, Ravelglen Rocky, privately from Brian O’Kane. This was the start of the Killua herd of Irish Moileds.

In September, Killua Castle will be opening the Twelve Points restaurant named after its signature stag with dishes. Their own rare and native breeds such as Irish Moiled beef, lamb, venison, free-range chickens and eggs will feature.

They raise animals sustainably on green pastures. They also will be using local fresh produce in their restaurant. Visitors will get a preview of this very exciting new venture.

Killua Castle has already opened its doors to visitors for guided tours of the Castle and will host an open day on Saturday, September 3rd, 2022.

Selling meat boxes

They have very kindly opened their doors to welcome Irish Moiled breeders, particularly those interested who are presently setting the trend of selling meat boxes.

There will be a tour of the processing plant at 11 am, and from 1 pm onwards. The beautiful herd of Irish Moileds at Killua Castle will be on view on the surrounding castle grounds.

There will be an artisan street food van selling Irish Moiled burgers and refreshments.

If you would like to be part of the Irish Moiled breeders day at Killua Castle, numbers are required as it is a first-come first-served basis.

Please contact Gillian if you plan to make a weekend of it and require names of local accommodation or to book your place.

The annual autumn Magnificent Moilie Online Sale will take place from 7 pm Tuesday, 27th to 7 pm on Thursday, September 29th.

There is a large selection of elite females available for sale. An online catalogue will be available through the Irish Moiled Cattle Society Facebook page and Harrison and Hetheringtons Auctioneers.

For further details on the above or to book your place for breeders’ day, please contact Gillian at [email protected]

Other articles on That’s Farming:

‘Find time for leisure, holidays and family’ – Teagasc tells beef farmers

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