A series of wine-tasting evenings hosted by the recently-opened The Black Sheep restaurant in Stewartstown may be cancelled, after the first of the events disintegrated into inebriated chaos.
The wine tasting event, where the the guests are expected to take only a sip or two of a range of fine wines, was organised by the Black Sheep restaurant to increase its custom and to introduce new exciting ways to introduce good quality to wine to its clientele.
“Maybe it was a bit much for Stewartstown”, admitted restaurant manager Finnuala Keenan. “We wanted the patrons of the event to really understand and appreciate the finer points of amazing wines. Instead some of them were intent on trying to drink their own weight in Chablis. The clifts”.
In particular, local man Fergal McAleer was pointed out as being particularly poorly behaved.
“It was clear he was wrote aff before he even got there”, complained Keenan. “He spent ten minutes chatting to the grandfather clock in the lounge thinking it was the wine waiter. He was pretending he was some big wine authority, but he was fooling no-one. And his manners were disgusting”.
Keenan explained that McAleer glugged back almost an entire bottle, declaring it was the finest vintage he had ever tasted, before realising he had accidentally been drinking a bottle of table vinegar that had been left out since lunchtime. He allegedly followed this up by taking a long slug of Chiraz, slurring, “I am amused by its impertinence”, before vomiting all over his own legs.
“How dare they criticise my manners”, bristled McAleer after the event. “I’m a big wine man around these parts. I only threw up because it was a dodgy bottle of whatever it was I drinking. Was it red? Maybe it was white. Anyway, I’m as considerate as they come. That’s why I was drinking it straight from the bottle. Trying to save them the washing up on the wine glasses, understand?”
Keenan however insisted that McAleer was far from the only protagonist.
“I was hoping to host an evening of sipping fine wine and informed chat about vineyards and tannins and suchlike. What did I end up with? 16 people singing ‘Whiskey in the Jar’ at the top of their voices. These people just don’t do sipping.”.
The restaurant intends to persevere with similar events but set at a lower standard, with a Buckfast-tasting evening planned for next Friday.
The small village of Tullyallen is to make history this Sunday at a junior football game when their 12-man triangle band make their first appearance in public. The band, made up of mostly pensioners from Killeeshil, Cabragh and Dungannon, promise to play classics like ‘Finnegan’s Wake‘, ‘Lily the Pink‘ and ‘Big Strong Man‘ on their triangles. It is the first band made up of triangles in Ireland, probably Europe and possibly the world.
Band leader, Sadie McGuigan (76) told us:
“We were all saying it was a great pity that the pipe band had gone under, over 50 years ago. So we agreed to resurrect it but realised no one had a note in their head. Someone remembered playing the triangle in the 1950s at a primary school play and so we bought 12 triangles. Lo and behold, we all sounded the same and it has just taken off from there. We’re very excited to be putting Tullyallen back on the map.”
Killeeshil have asked the band to play for 20 mins before the game with Drumragh as well as marching around the field in a parade. McGuigan is fully aware of the task ahead:
“We just know the three songs on the triangle so I’ve worked it out we might need to play each about 30 times. For the parade we’ll just make something up, maybe ‘Whiskey in the Jar‘. “
McGuigan reacted angrily when asked if anyone will be able to make out the songs as every note sounds the same:
“Away and jump. Triangle playing is one of the hardest instruments to master. That’s why no one has attempted a band before. Anyway, people can just pretend to hear whatever song they like when we play. That’s the beauty of the triangle. In our heads it might be ‘Paddy McGinty’s Goat‘ – in your head it might be ‘Faith of our Fathers‘. Everyone’s a winner.”
The pre-match festivities kick off at 2:30pm.