Our Story

In the shadow of
the Pirate Queen…

Connemara Smokehouse is idyllically perched atop Bunowen Pier, overlooking the raging Atlantic waves and in the shadow of the castle of the famous Pirate Queen.

The smokehouse is located on the very edge of Connemara – a place of enchanting and unspoilt serenity which is outlined with a beautiful jagged coastline.

The castle ruins of the Pirate Queen Granuaile (Grace O’Malley c1530-1603) look down on the smokehouse from across the harbour below the Hill of Doon. The moody peaks of the 12 Bens look out over the castle and smokehouse to the green islands scattered across Ballyconneely Bay.

Visitors to our smokehouse often describe a feeling of being perched at ‘the end of the world’ with the ocean stretching out for thousands of miles before them. It’s a magnificent place which people have fallen in love with for centuries and a home of which we are very proud.

Connemara Smokehouse Galway
Bunowen Castle

In the beginning…

The Roberts family first adopted the centuries-old Irish tradition of smoking wild salmon in 1979. Since the 1990’s, when Graham and Saoirse took the reins, the family team has grown to include their children Amy, Keith, Ethan and Katie.
It all started more than 40 years ago when John, a lifelong fisherman, and Bridget purchased an ‘Afos’ fish-smoking kiln – fondly dubbed ‘Old Smoky’.

The unique flavours created by Old Smoky – which was first commissioned in 1946 – and the Roberts family’s dedication to quality, helped the smokehouse become world-famous for producing the finest smoked fish.

Connemara Smokehouse is a multi award-winning company which has supplied some of the biggest names in fine food retail – including prestigious high street leaders such as Harrods and Fortnum and Mason. Having undergone some major surgery and enjoyed some tender loving care, ‘Old Smoky’ still has pride of place at the smokehouse.

In the beginning…

The Roberts family first adopted the centuries-old Irish tradition of smoking wild salmon in 1979. Since the 1990’s, when Graham and Saoirse took the reins, the family team has grown to include their children Amy, Keith, Ethan and Katie.
It all started more than 40 years ago when John, a lifelong fisherman, and Bridget purchased an ‘Afos’ fish-smoking kiln – fondly dubbed ‘Old Smoky’.

The unique flavours created by Old Smoky – which was first commissioned in 1946 – and the Roberts family’s dedication to quality, helped the smokehouse become world-famous for producing the finest smoked fish.

Connemara Smokehouse is a multi award-winning company which has supplied some of the biggest names in fine food retail – including prestigious high street leaders such as Harrods and Fortnum and Mason.
Having undergone some major surgery and enjoyed some tender loving care, ‘Old Smoky’ still has pride of place at the smokehouse.

In the media…

Smoked Tuna with Grapefruit, Orange & Olives

“Located in an idyllic setting, metres from the sea beside a white sandy beach in Ballyconneely, the Smokehouse is a standard-bearer for all that is good in the Irish food industry.”

Vanessa Berman, Sunday Business Post

“Graham’s poetic account of how to prepare smoked Irish tuna and salmon nibbles on warm toast or soda bread with cream cheese, cucumber, fresh dill, lemon or lime and a chilled glass of wine, would convince the staunchest fish-hater to taste his products for themselves. Next time you think of Connemara, think of fresh,
delicious local seafood, It’s right on our doorstep.”

Yvonne Kerr, Country Living

“Perched at the end of Bunowen Pier, he’s [Graham is] happy to demonstrate the handmade smoking process (tours run Wednesdays at 3pm during the summer), but what catches my eye are the fishy drawings Bridget’s grandkids (Graham’s kids) have pinned over the cash register. That’s a family business.”

Pól Ó Conghaile, Irish Independent Weekend-Travel

Ireland’s First Food Économusée

Connemara Smokehouse is Ireland’s first Food Économusée, a fascinating place to visit and learn all about the traditional Irish process of handcrafting perfect smoked seafood.

Visitors can enjoy a feast for the senses by learning, first-hand, the skills of our team before touching, tasting, taking home, talking about and savouring our famous product.

During the summer months we facilitate educational coach tours and pre-arranged visits on selected days each week. Visitors also have the opportunity to buy handcrafted smoked seafood in our factory shop.

An économusée is designed to be an important cultural tourism attraction and contributes to the sustainability of rural areas through the creation of direct employment and by providing an attraction that disperses tourists to rural regions.

An économusée is a heritage business that earns its keep by combining economy and culture and we are proud to be Ireland’s first food Économusée.

To enquire about educational tours, please get in touch via our contact form.

Ireland’s First Food Économusée

Connemara Smokehouse is Ireland’s first Food Économusée, a fascinating place to visit and learn all about the traditional Irish process of handcrafting perfect smoked seafood.

Visitors can enjoy a feast for the senses by learning, first-hand, the skills of our team before touching, tasting, taking home, talking about and savouring our famous product.

During the summer months we facilitate educational coach tours and pre-arranged visits on selected days each week. Visitors also have the opportunity to buy handcrafted smoked seafood in our factory shop.

An économusée is designed to be an important cultural tourism attraction and contributes to the sustainability of rural areas through the creation of direct employment and by providing an attraction that disperses tourists to rural regions.

An économusée is a heritage business that earns its keep by combining economy and culture and we are proud to be Ireland’s first food Économusée.

To enquire about educational tours, please get in touch via our contact form.

Awards and Achievements from Irish Smokehouseirish food writers guildsmoked kippers

Awards and
Achievements . . .

Connemara Smokehouse has won an array food awards and is a favourite of chefs – celebrity and otherwise – both in Ireland and internationally.

Among the many prestigious accolades amassed by Connemara Smokehouse are:
• Georgina Campbell – Irish Breakfast Award
• Irish Food Writers’ Guild Awards
• Great Taste Awards – Gold
• Good Food Ireland Best Use of Sustainable Fish Award
• National Geographic Travel Top 10 Ireland and Northern Ireland

Our Commitment to Sustainability . . .

• We are committed to ensuring the sustainability of our business by always promoting the sustainability of our environment, our local economy and our local fish stocks.

• We source our fish locally, both reducing the distance it travels and supporting local employment.

• Our organic products are certified by The Irish Organic Trust.

• We source wind-generated electricity to reduce our carbon footprint. We conserve energy and water through regular checks and servicing of equipment. We use energy efficient lighting throughout our premises.

• We maximise waste re-use and recycling. We employ staff who live locally and adopt programs to educate, train and motivate staff to work in an environmentally responsible manner and to play a full part in developing new ideas and initiatives to promote sustainability.

• We are winners of the ‘Best Use of Sustainable Local Fish Award’ at the Good Food Ireland Awards.

Our Commitment to the Environment . . .

Our Commitment
to the Environment

At Connemara Smokehouse, we recognise that everything we do has an impact on the environment. We are committed to working hard to minimise any environmental impacts associated with our business activities.

• We comply with all relevant environmental legislation and industry standards.
• We continually reduce our use of non-renewable resources and energy.
• We maximise the reduction and recycling of waste.
• We prevent and minimise risks of water pollution.
• We use all resources as efficiently as possible.
• We continually increase our use of recycled materials and materials from renewable sources.
• We pass on the benefits of improved environmental practice to our staff and visitors.
• We strive for continuous improvement in our environmental management.
• We review our environmental impact annually to ensure continual improvements.