Four Seasons Hotel, Dublin
During my solitary time in Ireland at TBEX and before my press trip I was delighted to share a lunch with the Marketing Director of Four Seasons Hotel in Dublin. We met at Seasons, the in-house dining room at the Four Seasons. Having previously eaten at Four Seasons Istanbul I knew I would be in for a treat and I was not wrong.
On arrival the restaurant is so spacious and inviting. It is divided into two dining rooms. One a classic luxury restaurant with chairs and tables, the other known as the Reading Room a smaller room with a large fireplace, books on shelves and an enticing coziness that suited our lunch date perfectly.
My entrée of calamari was cooked to a roasted golden deliciousness and my main meal was lamb in a spring broth. That lamb just melted in my mouth and when combined with the traditional colcannon, wow! My lunch partner also had some truly mouthwatering dishes, each plated in top quality fashion.
I wish I had room for dessert. I could only imagine what that could have been like. All in all, next time I visit Dublin I would make it my priority to come back for some contemporary Irish cuisine at the Four Seasons Hotel, Dublin.
The Twelve, Galway
I first ate at this restaurant on my press trip through Ireland and enjoyed the best lamb tasting platter I’ve had in my life. It was so great I had to bring the family back.
My second time I tried these delicious, unusual spring rolls and then we were surprised with dessert by the wonderful staff. Check this baby out: chocolate, marshmallow & berry pizza. Yes, it was as delicious as it sounded.
Casa Nostra, Limerick
Friends we had originally met on a tour of Nazareth in Israel, and then coincidentally bumped into in no-mans land between Jordan and Israel (they were on their way out, we on our way into Jordan), lived in Limerick. We were very excited to spend a few nights in Limerick to see the amazing castles, Cliffs of Mohor, and them.
They invited us to dinner one night at Casa Nostra, probably the best Italian in all of Ireland (and certainly better then a lot of the food we found in Italy).
We started with a beautiful platter of meats and cheeses and followed it up with absolutely al-dente pasta for Josh and I, and lasagne for the kids. It was so delicious; words fail to describe the palette pleasure.
While we sat talking about travel and photography (Michael is an amazing photographer) the Owner could sense the restlessness growing in our kids. He asked them both if they would like to come into the kitchen and make a pizza! Mia created a pizza that she rolled, topped, cooked and then got to take home – complimentary! She had such a blast, as you can see. I wish we could have gone again, lovely!
Caius never got around to participating. He fell asleep. Yes, right there on the floor.
Cliffs of Mohor – Cliffs View Café
Most tourist attraction cafés typically run on the bland, unmemorable list of restaurants. So you can imagine our surprise after visiting the windy, cool and breathtaking Cliffs of Mohor, that we entered the extraordinary Cliffs View Café. Located with spectacular views of the cliffs, this eatery has more going for it than just the views.
It had been a long time between pies for me, perhaps even dating back to Australia, and to have a hot one with crispy pastry and a well-dressed side salad, came as a complete surprise.
Josh was treated with a delicious Irish stew. His first one since coming to Ireland. I had actually eaten one at the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin (highly recommend), but this one was not far behind. The kids also polished off a stew between them, vegetables and all.
We followed that up with the sweetest carrot cake, warm apple pie & even a free cake for the kids that had broken apart so they gave it away. It’s worth stopping for lunch after the wind blows you around visiting the Cliffs.
Brown Bear – Two Mile House
Josh and I celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary while in Ireland and he found this magical spot in a very small town. A quaint pub with a fabulous luxury restaurant. For 20 euros I was served 2 courses.
The first delicious chicken wings in blue cheese sauce, the best I’ve had since the USA. The serving was also huge and after those wings, I was full. Josh had a mouth-watering veal sausage.
For mains the plating was exquisite and I was served venison, while Josh went for the duck. This was my third try of venison and while I enjoyed the shank I made a decision that night, that I did not like venison. Josh’s duck was scrumptious.
Josh had yet to try the colcannon, so we ordered that and it was the hit of the night with everyone. You can fnd out below what it is.
Colcannon is a traditional Irish dish mainly consisting of mashed potatoes with kale or cabbage and often with other yummy extras like bacon. After my first try at the Four Seasons I was hooked. It’s the perfect winter food on a wintry Irish day.
Homemade Soup With Mash
We had lunch with a reader of our blog in Donegal at the famous Blueberry Café and this was under the kids menu. It is apparently a fairly simple staple for Irish kids just like the colcannon.
Basically it came out how it sounds. A bowl of homemade vegetable soup and in the middle a giant scoop of mash potato. The kids could not get enough of it. Apparently it is quite normal for the kids to be asked “one scoop or two?”
Black pudding – Think about skipping this one
Black pudding is a delicacy I was served with most Irish breakfasts. And while I tried it several times I came to the same conclusion, I don’t like it. Give me vegemite on toast any day.
Black pudding, blood pudding or blood sausage is a type of sausage made by cooking blood or dried blood with a filler until it is thick enough to congeal when cooled. I mean, that even sounds gross, right?
Hope you enjoyed that post. Some of our time in Ireland was filled with cooking since we hadn't done it in so long. The food is very similiar to what we are use to in Australia so we enjoyed things like Baked Beans and Sausage Rolls and making Tacos. I loved Ireland.
Reader Comments..."I respond to every comment by direct private email. I look forward to your feedback" - Josh Bender
Did you not visit the Rebel County? It seems to me like you only tavelled a fraction of Ireland and you didn't get the full flavour of Ireland.......................
Hi T - I don’t think any body can see everything, but we did as much as we could in one month from East to West, South to North - Dublin to Limerick to the Cliffs, Ring of Kerry, Cork, Cobh, Kilkenny, Naas, north to the UK - Belfast, Giant’s Causeway, Londonderry, back to the West - Galway and more. I think we did pretty well given our time limit. We certainly did visit Rebel County - loved FOTA wildlife park! Perhaps you could let me know when we are in Ireland next time your recommendations?
Great posts guys. Loved the photos and the descriptions. We LOVED the food and the people of Ireland and can't wait to return.
Just because you didn't like black pudding doesn't mean others should automatically skip it. I was rather leery of it at first but was glad I chose to be adventurous and try it because I quite like it.
Completely agree @carla. It was more tongue and cheek then anything. We are always eager to try new food everywhere. Probably won’t try it again though ;)
I visited Ireland,two months before I had dinner in Leixlip with sanjaykitchen , They give me such an awesome food. I love their food so much. waiting for my next Ireland Trip.
sad to say that casa nostra has closed down. I'm from Limerick and it was easily my favourite restaurant
I also have a plan to go Ireland in coming months for having fun with my mates so I must explore these fabulous food places during my journey.
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