Sinead and Craig bring a taste of the alternative to Limerick

Sinead and Craig at their Blaslóg foodtruck with furry friends Chuck and Winnie.

FOR a lot of young Irish people these days, moving to Australia is usually the start of an adventure. For Limerick woman Sinead Grene and her Cork-born partner Craig Power, the opposite is true. Their adventure started on a camping trip in Tasmania, when they stopped at a food truck and the idea of moving back home to Ireland and opening their own business hit them.

Blaslóg co-founder Sinead spoke to the Ensemble reflecting on her journey so far, from coming up with the idea to moving home and making her dreams a reality.

“We were camping in Tasmania and we got food from this food truck. My background is social care and Craig’s background is data analysis, so it was very random but we got food from the food truck and we had a long drive back to the ferry. By the time we got to the ferry, we had decided to move home, buy a food truck, and start a business. And things have just evolved from that.”

Sinead, who was studying to be a yoga teacher at the time, said that the business was never originally intended to be as diverse at it has become today.

“Yoga was never any part of the plan, we first thought of maybe a food type business and then we started to think coffee and yoga, the two of them mix really well,” she recalls.
The couple eventually set up their food truck Blaslóg – which translates from Irish as ‘tastebud’ – and took over renting at the Emerald Par 3 pitch and putt site in Monaleen, where they offered food, rounds of golf, and yoga classes.

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Another brainwave
It was during this time that Sinead noticed the potential in the Ballybricken area she was living, which led her to yet another brainwave. In May of this year, she and Craig converted their shed into their new yoga studio, adding a hot tub and ice bath for good measure, and ‘Gather by Blaslóg’ was born.

Sinead admitted that moving from Monaleen was daunting. The couple were worried that relocating 20 minutes outside Castletroy would feel too far away to travel for their regulars, but she says it’s actually worked in their favour.

“Everyone seemed to be like ‘this is great’. It’s only 20 minutes but it feels like you’re more remote than you actually are – you can’t see any houses when you’re out and it feels really private.”

The expansion to Gather by Blaslóg has seen the couple moving to offering traditional yoga classes, full moon gatherings, Kundalini activations, and vinyasa flow, in addition to their tried and tested fares.

Explaining the new move, Sinead said: “The full moon gatherings are all about reflecting back on the four weeks since the last full moon, and you leave behind what you’re ready to get rid of from those four weeks. So it’s a little bit of yoga, a little bit of breath work, and then we write down all the things we want to leave behind and throw them in the fire.”
Kundalini activation is a form of meditation that focuses on getting energy flowing through the body transforming thoughts and emotions and releasing any negative energy and trauma.

“With Kundalini, you’re just lying down on a mat wearing an eye mask, it’s very individual. Even though it’s done in a group setting, the music is played really loud and people have gotten different responses. It’ll be completely different every single session for every single person,” Sinead explains.

A shift in mindset
Pondering her success since she made the move back home, Sinead says that she’s noticed a shift in the mindset of Irish people since the Covid-19 pandemic which may have helped pave the way for her and Craig.

“Ireland felt completely different compared to four years before when we left. I felt like people’s mindsets were a bit more easy-going. We got so used to plans being cancelled and having to just be happy with getting out for a walk because we couldn’t do anything for so long. So I feel like there been a shift in people’s mindset now.

“I think all those things probably helped with getting people on board to come to classes and to try it out. It doesn’t matter who you are, what your background is, or what you’ve got going on, you’re coming in here and it’s just to enjoy yourself and to not have the pressures and the busyness that comes with everyday life.”

“I think our goal with all of it was really just to create a welcoming environment,” Sinead says. “The whole reason we picked our name, ‘tastebud’, was because it’s a taste of yoga and it’s for everyone. You can be a complete beginner, you can have never, ever stretched or done anything before, you’re still going to be welcome. You’re still going to be part of what we’re doing.”