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Ruairi Quinn

Ruairi Quinn has been an active politician for much of his adult life.

A qualified architect, he was first elected as a Labour TD to Dail Eireann in 1977.

His political career has seen him hold many ministerial portfolios including Finance, Labour and Enterprise and Employment.

He was elected to the leadership of the Labour Party in 1997 and held the position until 2002. Ruairi has distinguished himself as a committed European and has been at the forefront of the movement to bring about a closer relationship between Ireland and the Eurpean Commission.

In 2005 he published a memoir of his life in politics In terms of his culinary inclinations, Ruairi likes to think that Labour were the first political party to espouse a coherent policy on food.

"After all", he says, " the Labour party are the people who discovered smoked salmon!".

One of Ruairi's particular memories relates to the time when Ireland held the Presidency of the EU from July to December 1996. As president of the Council of Finance Ministers, he was the host for a lunch in Leinster House.

Ruairi is proud of the dishes that were served on the day and he has included one of them - Corned Beef with a light whiskey sauce - in his menu for The Restaurant.

His love of European cuisine is also reflected in the presence of a Spanish tortilla on the menu. As Head Chef for Christmas Ruairi is hoping his menu will bring seasonal cheer to our diners and critics.

Will he succeed, or is Ruairi Quinn heading for a cold, cold Christmas? Find out in The Restaurant.

Click here get the menu and recipes from tonight's show.

Read what guest critic Gary Rhodes and the others said here.

Ruairi Quinn
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