We associate Christmas with feasting, making merry and indulging our tastebuds, often with very traditional fare. Sometimes that leaves the non-meat eaters, the vegetarians and vegans amongst us a little out in the cold. Well known vegan restaurant  Sweet Beat in Sligo town has the answer to that – their series of Winter Feast which really do have a different twist on the traditional festive menu.

Sweet Beat’s  describe their Winter Feast as a special gathering at the table,  featuring a three course meal devised by head chef Carolanne Rushe and based on locally sourced winter produce, to reconnect us with the changing seasons. Guests will enjoy a complimentary kombucha cocktail upon arrival. It sounds utterly wonderful.

For those who don’t get to the Winter Feast but want to escape from the pre-Christmas consumerfest for a while, here are a few ideas. Ósta Cafe promises mulled wine as well as their usual delicious fare. A festive afternoon tea at Eala Bhan or at Cawley’s in Tubbercurry seems the ideal break to take mid-afternoon – a chance to regroup and check the gift list! Even enjoy a princess afternoon tea with a special someone in Cawley’s.

When the weather is cold outside, it’s time to warm up inside. WB’s Café has a smart selection of warming winter drinks and reports that Hazelnut, Gingerbread, Salted Caramel and Toffee Nut are the favourite flavours for 2016. Nook Cafe must be contenders for the quirkiest winter warmer with a Hot drinks Menu starring Caramel Popcorn Hot Chocolate. Le Fournil bakery and chocolaterie has a wonderful selection of Christmas cakes, treats, chocolate reindeer and even chocolate Cinderella shoes, all handmade in Sligo. Next door at The Wine Buff is a magnet for wine lovers especially for the regular Friday night tastings and the seasonal tasting events. Worth checking out.

The heart of Sligo Town has a Sweet Beat indeed for lovers of fine foods and drinks in all shapes and forms!