- MegMD Jun 17, 2008 07:45 AM
My family and I are traveling to Eire, 7-9-08 and have lots of family there. We've traveled before , but now that I'm a food blog writer and totally immersed in all things culinary, I'd love to hear some reccomendations from folks of great places to check out. I'd like to do a blog post or two on some of these places.
We fly into Dublin, but won't spend too much time here. My family lives in Co. Leitrim and Co. Longford.... and we will probably travel to Galway and a few other places.
Any suggestions? Should I steal the rental car from my parents and head out somewhere?
You'll need a car. Public transport in Ireland is dire.
LOADS of things you can do. I am from the south coast so unfamiliar with Leitrim I am afraid. My suggestions would be head to Conemara and soak up the gorgeous conutryside with lots of guiness and seafood. There's some great irish cheeses too. Might be worth checking if there's a farmer's market on while you're about? You could also head north to Donegal which is gorgeous.
I go home as often as I can, which isn't often enough right now! Last time I went to Kinvara and sampled some of the local smoked salmon. The Burren is wonderful and I would highly recommend it.
I am afraid that I was pretty poor on the blogging front but these posts might help:
My favorite fish and chips place in Galway was called McDonagh's (sp?). It was great, and I think it's still around.
If you get to the Ring of Kerry on this trip, the Avoca Weavers' Cafe at Mull's Gap is an interesting place for a lunch stop (plus beautiful views). Their food is simple but very tasty. They also have another cafe in County Wicklow where their main weaving goes on.
I just had a beautiful meal at the Mermaid Café in Dublin (http://www.mermaid.ie/). Great new Irish comfort food all around - recently I had a succulent pork chop with fava beans and spring peas, another diner at my table had a wonderful roasted tomato and feta risotto.
Any other rants and raves out there on Dublin dining?? I'm new to the city and am slowly making the rounds.
I would for sure steal the rental!! My boyfriend lives in Ireland and we fly back and forth to see each other... I've been there loads of times and I always rent a car. We went to Kinsale but didnt have time to eat but apparently they are known for their food there... here is the link
Also, have a good map because its very easy to get lost on those small country roads. and look out for those roads that lead to nowhere : )
The best Irish food I've had in Ireland is in Kinsale which also happens to be one of the most beautifl villages in Ireland if not the whole world! Chowders served with crusty brown breads, beautiful cheeses, crisp boxty, all kinds of fresh seafood. A full Irish breakfast every day and a few pints at the end of the night. Heaven. The only places to avoid foodwise are the really touristy/golfy places. Kilarney comes to mind. But that's a story for another post.
I second the fish and chips from McDonough's in Galway. Get out to Connemara; try Renvyle House Hotel, Pangur Ban (in Letterfrack). Anything lamb; anything salmon. Ditto comments on cheeses. If only you could get to Cork . . . so many good places, so little time (and so little money).
And oysters. Moran's on the Weir outside Clarinbridge for oysters, smoked salmon, Guinness! If coming from Shannon heading to Galway, try to time your travel to go there for lunch (Guinness and oysters a bit much for a jet-lagged breakfast).
Stay true to your roots and don't ignore Co Leitrim! Two suggestions - The Courthouse in Kinlough is a lovely informal place but don't expect bacon&cabbage as the owner is from Sardinia. More formal would be Lough Rynn house outside Mohill, a nicely restored small country hotel that does a mean Cote du Boeuf for two for those who like their meat (or "mate" as it's spoken in these parts).
I would definitely recommend McDonagh's on Quay Street in Galway City as others have.
The fish and chips are to die for. During the day it is a fish and chip shop with shared tables/benches etc, at night half becomes a proper sit down restaurant with "posher" meals.
Further suggestions for the Co Leitrim area when checking out your roots. The Oarsman is a pub in Carrick-on-Shannon that has a very good restaurant upstairs, well worth a visit but book ahead. Slightly over the country boundary but one of the best restaurants in the region - Cromleach Lodge in Castlebaldwin. Leitrim may be the least populous county in the country but you won't starve.....