So before I do more “doing things” posts, I know you all want to know how the food was in Ireland, right? This post is going to be kind of long and picture heavy, so sorry about that. And if you are hungry while reading it, I’m really sorry 😀
It was said in a lot of places that you don’t go to Ireland for the food, so we weren’t expecting anything other than sustenance. Well, turns out we were mistaken! Ireland has some really great food.
The larger the city, the more choices of cuisine, obviously, but even the smaller towns had a nice variety of food and everything was plated so nicely. For those of you who don’t know, John is a vegetarian. We weren’t sure what his options would be. Quite a few, actually. Almost every restaurant had at least one vegetarian selection (even the pubs). The only thing is that there were no vegetarian versions of ‘traditional’ Irish dishes.
Anyway, our bed and breakfast places all had good food. Except the coffee at Rose Cottage. It was terrible LOL. I mentioned before that the breakfasts were huge. Or had the opportunity to be. We definitely ate less than we could have. It was nice having the porridge. Sometimes with eggs. We asked for the eggs to be scrambled with a little cheese and our host made it look so attractive – and even cut the toast into a little square:
So much bread. Every breakfast had the brown bread (a grainy quickbread thing that is really good) plus white toast. Not to mention all the butter! I ate a lot of butter that week LOL.
Lunches were just in little shops that we stumbled on. Even in a much smaller town, there was a good lunch for John of quiche and various salads.
For the price, we were pretty suprised at how much food came on the plate. Very reasonable. All of the coleslaw/potato type salads we came across were really mayo heavy. I don’t know why, but I guess the Irish love their mayo. At that place I had a ham, corn and cheese sandwich.
I’ve never had corn on a sandwich before. I don’t know if I will do that again. It was fine, but nothing special.
Another small cafe that served sandwiches in Adare:
See what I mean about how they plate everything nicely, even just a sandwich? This was a caprese sandwich.
There was always soup of some kind on the menus, with the ubiquitous brown bread. This was a place pretty much in the middle of nowhere near Staigue Fort (another post).
There were scones at all these places, too. The interesting thing is that they were always homemade scones, even at the really busy places like the Blarney castle. They don’t mess with the scones.
Usually served with jam and cream.
This was a “traditional” lunch:
Irish stew, potatoes and vegetables. This was quite good.
Since we were in Ireland surrounded by the ocean, I decided to try some fish and chips. I am not a big fish fan because it tastes…fishy. But, I figured it would be the freshest here. This was on our anniversary:
It actually was quite tasty, although I’m not used to having fries and a fried item. The fish didn’t taste fishy LOL!
At this same restaurant (pub), John had falafel, which he really enjoyed.
He got a soda with his meal. There are no fountain taps in any place it seems. You are given a bottle of soda everywhere. And it shows up on the bill as “mineral”.
The dinner I enjoyed the most was the cottage pie:
This was a Guinness beef stew on a bed of mashed potatoes with a pastry crust on top. Very good. While most of the portion sizes in Ireland were a more reasonable size than you get in the US, this one was a lot of food and I couldn’t finish it.
Ireland hosts a lot of different cuisines. There were tons of Indian restaurants, and we ate at one. The food tasted fresher and brighter than the Indian restaurants around here and really, really good. This is a samosa appetizer filled with potatoes and vegetables. We were sharing it and the chef plated one for each of us.
Now that is service!
We tried a French crepe restaurant:
These are buckwheat crepes. Mine said it had 2 kinds of bacon in it. It had what I call ham inside and the bacon outside. So good.
Another traditional dish (and another huge portion) was bacon, cabbage and potatoes with parsely sauce. Look at what they call bacon!
It’s ham LOL! This was at a pub with live entertainment. The food in the pubs is quite good!
You all know I love my coffee and I was concerned about being able to find coffee in Ireland, figuring it would be all tea. Well, apparently the coffee wave has hit over there and towns had multiple coffee shops. Yay!
The interesting thing is that they don’t have urns of brewed coffee to pour from. If you order a cup of coffee, you are made an Americano. Makes it nice and fresh that way. The only issue I had with the coffee shops is that almost all of them closed at 6:00. I guess after 6:00, they figure you switch from coffee to Guinness!
Lastly, the sweets. I mentioned before that Ireland does its sweets really well – and boy, do they! All the desserts were delicious. A few samples of what we had:
Ireland is really a melting pot of different cuisines and there certainly is plenty of good food to find. Can you believe I only gained 1 pound??