While living in Asia, Chef Patrick McGannon discovered kombucha, an ancient fermented tea drink and quickly became an advocate sharing his own personal health transformation upon drinking it daily. Patrick often shares how drinking kombucha:
1. Calms the digestive system
2. Plays a part of a weight loss/management program
3. Is a great alternative to diet, sugary and even alcohol drinks
His passion led him to become an expert and an authority on the kombucha brewing process. Upon returning to Ireland In 2019 he set out to establish Celtic Kombucha as the “new” healthy tea drink for Ireland that can be enjoyed by all.
Chef Patrick’s 4 passions in life are:
1. Experimenting with new foods and reinterpreting classic recipes
2. Living a healthy lifestyle with an emphasis on exercise and nutrition
3. Respecting the planet
4. Enjoying time with family and friends
From an early age in Ireland it was impressed upon him sustainability was a way of life.
Growing up on his family’s dairy farm in Quilty, County Clare he appreciated how self-sufficient his family could be with fuel coming from the bog and eggs, meat, dairy and vegetables all being produced on the farm. Everyone helped out, it seemed as soon as you could walk you had your jobs and his grandfather even had a greenhouse to provide vegetables throughout the year.
He remembers his family’s approach to life was simple: appreciate and take care of what you have (the land and the animals) and don’t waste anything. Everything was recycled as almost everything was used.
Education, New York City, Florida and some of the World’s most famous Chefs!
He went on to study culinary at G.M.I.T. and ended up heading to New York City to work in Corporate dinning. He loved living in the New York City, but the cost of living was high, and he decided to give Florida a try. In Florida he joined HSN, a 24/7 live shopping channel and eventually became the head of on air culinary, managing the team who prepared the on-air cooking demonstrations.
At HSN he had the extraordinary opportunity to work with and to learn from some of the world’s top celebrity chefs including Gordon Ramsey, Jamie Oliver, Wolfgang Puck, Todd English and Emeril Lagasse. His time at HSN opened up a whole new culinary world that Chef Patrick continues to explore today.
Fitness and Nutrition bring balance into his life.
While living in Florida he also started a daily exercise program to help manage the stress and anxiety around his high-pressure work. He quickly saw the benefits of a well-rounded fitness and nutrition program gaining increased energy, better sleep, improved body shape and being able to be more equipped to handle the stress of the job. Today fitness and nutrition remain a central part of his life.
Life in Italy was a dream but some extra weight came along with the stay.
After Florida he moved to Milan, Italy with his partner where he studied Italian, took courses in Italian Cuisine and represented culinary brands on air for QVC Italy. The three years in Italy flew by as he traveled most of Italy to experience the unique regional dishes and the use of fresh seasonal ingredients throughout the country.
Unfortunately with a steady diet of pasta, bread, cheeses, pastries and wines, even with daily exercising, for the first time in his life he started accumulating some extra weight!!!!!……but it was worth it.
Taiwan, such a beautiful and different world where the beginnings of Celtic Kombucha were born
Italy was followed by a stint in Taiwan. Again, Chef Patrick studied the language, took some cooking courses and worked with U.S. culinary brands seeking distribution in Taiwan. What he really loved in Taiwan was the dramatic food scene with so many options to choose from: Night markets, all types of Asian foods, noodle and dumpling dishes and the many amazing ways they cook all the different types of fresh fish.
In Taiwan Chef Patrick experienced a life altering event when he discovered kombucha. When complaining to a local friend about his frequent stomachache, they immediately suggested he try Kombucha. He had never heard of it but like everything else in Taiwan he was open to try new things. Immediatly he liked the taste and in a short period of time his stomach started to calm down. Encouraged with the result he started drinking kombucha instead of diet soda and sports drinks. He could not believe how much better he was feeling, it was like a miracle drink. Within in days he found he had more energy, was sleeping better, his stomach was no longer irritated or upset after eating and he was also able to significantly reduce his alcohol consumption as he found Kombucha a satisfying substitute.
The big surprise was after trying in vain to lose the extra pounds from Italy, once he started to drinking kombucha daily the weight started to drop off and finally reached his goal weight.
Back to home, Ireland and making Celtic Kombucha uniquely Irish.
He quickly became obsessed with kombucha wanting to know everything about it and in particular why didn’t more people know about kombucha and its health benefits. He quickly found out kombucha was already being embraced by the western world and that it is actually was one of the fastest growing beverages.
He set out to become an expert on the brewing process and received great feedback on his own recipes when he shared them with family and friends. The lockdown of 2020 allowed Chef Patrick the time he needed to focus on developing Celtic Kombucha and making it uniquely Irish by including local ingredients known to have medicinal benefits from the bay, Burren and bog.
Chef Patrick returned to Ireland to live in 2019 with his husband Michael and their two dogs Asia and Moscow. They now live in a fisherman’s cottage on the Cliff’s of Quilty in County Clare that look out on the Aran Islands, The Cliffs of Moher and Mutton Island. They spend most of their days making Celtic Kombucha, taking walks and cooking for family and friends.