Paul Smith is an Irish chef and food educator with almost 35 years experience in hospitality and training. He is passionate about the use of Irish and local ingredients and has been actively championing Irish producers and recipes throughout his career, working in Germany, France, New York and Ireland. As chef /owner of his restaurant The Mystic Celt, Paul was renowned for showcasing local ingredients in his locations in Dingle County Kerry and Wicklow Town.
Paul followed his interest in food culture and food history by pursuing an MA in Gastronomy and Food Studies at TU Dublin and he graduated in 2020. He focused his research on culinary education for children and has dedicated many years to promoting and highlighting the importance of food literacy. Paul continues to work in culinary education, especially with marginalised groups such as Prisons, Youthreach, Enable Ireland, Springboard, and Rehab, but also in private cookery classes and secondary schools. He also offers training in HACCP and Food Business Management, bringing his years of hospitality experience to guide new start-ups.
In recent years Paul has focused his love of local food on his native County Wicklow. He has been involved in Wicklow Naturally, Wicklow’s Food and Drinks Network since its inception. He is now the co-ordinator for the network, bringing his passion and experience to the members of the group. Paul’s work at the network has ensured that County Wicklow is now finding itself as one of the leading food destinations in Ireland