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Carve-out a unique Father's Day present at Lunya, Liverpool

by Chris Johnson. Published Fri 01 Jun 2012 14:35, last updated: 02/06/12
Lunya
Lunya

If anyone had been asked to discuss Liverpool in the same breath as gastronomy twenty years ago they would have struggled to think of much beyond its famous Chinese restaurants and a handful of classy eateries serving the lunchtime business trade.

In the last five years there has been an astonishing seismic shift in the fine food offering of the city, to such an extent that visitors and locals are spoilt for choice.

But when you drill a little deeper into the options on offer there are some destinations that stand out, head and shoulders above the norm.

They are locally run by people who have a real passion for good food and excellence... and the Catalonian restaurant and delicatessan "Lunya" is one of the front-runners in that sector.

Lunya proclaims itself as "The UK's first Catalonian fusion deli and restaurant, and Liverpool's best Spanish restaurant and delicatessen."

Few if any would challenge that boast, and one needs spend only a little time in the company of Lunya's owner to find-out why.

Peter Kinsella tells how the idea of Lunya was born in his head during a spell when he spent some time in Barcelona on business.

He was so thrilled and inspired at the fine food on offer in the region that he embarked on a personal gastronomic odyssey that resulted in him quitting his fomer job in management to establish Lunya and make it the huge success that it is today.

One of Peter's passions are the Serrano hams that he sources directly from producers in Catalonia and elsewhere in Spain.

He explained how some of them are from black-footed hogs that roam freely in mountains and woods, feeding on acorns. Salted and aged as long of seven years a single ham, weighing 9 kilos can have a value of as much as £700.

Peter tells of the provenance and characteristics of these hams, produced in the same way for centuries, in the kind of vocabulary a vintner uses to extol the vintage and terroir of a fine wine.

And despite the fact that two years into the life of Lunya, Peter is working a six-day week and sometimes an 18-hour day, he still finds time to share his passion for Seranno hams with customers through ham-carving lessons.

There is an art to carving a Seranno ham off the bone and one that Peter is pleased to share. (See the video in which Peter explains some of the basics and background).

When we visted the next session was due on 26 June at 6.30pm, when, in conjunction with Brindisa, Mario Hiraldo, an expert Master Carver from Spain was due to be running the ham carving evening.

The night consists of a demonstration of ham carving, expert talk from Mario Hiraldo, a chance to practice carving, and a ham and wine feast, with 3 wines paired to each of the hams, snacks and tapitas.

The hams on demonstration were to be Trevelez Serrano, Ibérico and Bellota hams and the timing and price, at £45 per person*, was also expected to make it a popular Father's Day gift.

* Includes tuition, practice carving, ham, snacks, tapitas and 3 glasses of wine.

Find Lunya at 18-20 College Lane, Liverpool, Merseyside, L1 3DS, just off Hanover Street, on the edge of Liverpool One, and just behind the Bluecoat Chambers.

Call 0151 706 9770 or visit www.lunya.co.uk for details.



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"Been to Lunya a coupl of times. Never been disappointed. The ham carving lesson sounds tempting too!" Jim Green, Aigburth around 2 years, 5 months ago

 
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