Located at the top of Gorey Main Street since August 2018 is Table Forty One, an understated eatery serving fine dining food in a casual, calming atmosphere. Run by Andrew Duncan, a Gorey native who has returned from his travels, he is determined to bring quality food using local, seasonal ingredients to our ever-curious taste buds.
Sitting with Andrew on a Wednesday afternoon at 3pm was a relaxed, memorable affair. You would never have guessed that prep for a full night’s service was underway in the kitchen, where he himself is the only Chef. Alongside his team, Andrew wants to deliver a personable experience where dishes like lamb, duck and crème brûlée are elevated using quaint, North Wexford ingredients such as wild garlic and lavender.
At a perfectly set, welcoming table overlooking a bustling high street, we spoke of how Andrew had left school at 16 years of age. Dyslexia made it hard for him to find his place within the education system and, having spent time in the South of France where his interest in food had first begun, Andrew decided to embark on what would turn out to be a colourful, cultured career. First stop? Marlfield House Hotel.
Andrew worked at Marlfield for two years and during this time he also attended the Waterford Institute of Technology, completing a degree in culinary arts. From there, Andrew cooked his way around the world with five years under Henry Stone of Sha-Roe Bistro, two years at the Park Hotel Kenmare, a year in New Zealand, a year as Sous Chef at the Dunbrody Country House Hotel, three years in Canada working in high-end resorts and two years at Etihad Towers in Abu Dhabi, thrown in for good measure.
So, what brought Andrew back? Having travelled the world, why is this young chef settling in our fair Gorey town? “I always wanted to open my own place, something small, intimate, personal and consistent” and, lucky for us, this now invigorated space came up.
When speaking to Andrew, a love for indigenous produce, utilising his surroundings and foraging for food shone through. With a fortnightly menu change, he forages the likes of cep mushrooms from Tinahely, samphire plucked from Ballymoney and rhubarb out of the neighbour's garden, so you can rest assured that the ingredients on your plate have been ethically sourced.
Table Forty One has undoubtedly taken the foodie world by storm with locals filling the seats Wednesday to Sunday and many travelling from Wicklow, Arklow and beyond. Me? I have eaten there a couple of times now, showing off this local treasure to family and friends alike. The delicate lighting, coastal interior and personal touches such as travel photos gracing the walls is something to be proud of.
I could not refrain myself, one final question – why the name Table Forty One? And, as expected from a Chef who serves simple yet never simplistic cuisine, it is located at number 41, Gorey Main Street and all I can say is: book now!