Dining in Ireland

Planning Your Irish Vacation

Eating in Ireland

Fish & Chips at Kinnitty Castle in County Offaly, Ireland

Kinnitty Castle in County Offaly offers magnificent rooms, if you wish to lodge there. But even those of us not made of coin can enjoy a meal in the beautiful library-turned-pub.

One of my favorite things about Ireland is the food.  I know many who look at me strangely and picture loads of potatoes or fish and chips- both of which you’ll find across the country.  But it doesn’t take long to find a bit of everything else, as well.  Ireland has been experiencing a foodie renaissance for years.  When we visited in 2008, Good Food Ireland was well established and promoting fresh, locally sourced food.

During our recent trip we ate at B&Bs, pubs, tea houses, fancy restaurants and even purchased items from the local grocery.   Each meal was memorable; some for the exquisite food, others for the beautiful location, yet others for the craic.  In the slideshow below, you’ll see that Irish food may not be what you think it is…  (you can find more details about each photo in the Irish Food Flickr set)

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Foods to Try in Ireland

  • Before you turn your nose up at Black Pudding- aka blood pudding- give it a try!  It’s such a flavorful sausage- you may be pleasantly surprised!
  • If you find a pub or restaurant serving boxty, order it!  Boxty is a traditional potato pancake.  You’ll find it thin and served wrapped around meat, thicker and served as a side, or even quite thick, topped with butter, almost like a slice of bread.
  • Have fish & chips at least once; preferably in a pub at the edge of the ocean.
  • Even if you don’t like salmon, try the smoked salmon.  It’s incredible.
  • Guinness tastes better in Ireland.  If you don’t enjoy “the black stuff”, try Bulmer’s- a lovely hard cider.
  • Shop at an Irish grocery- at least once.  It’s really quite fun.
  • If you’re near a market- like the English Market in Cork– take the time to wander through and grab some of the very freshest food in Ireland (as well as local specialties).

Do you have a favorite Irish food or place to eat in Ireland?  Please- share your recommendations in the comments!



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