Jump to content


Photo

Cork, Ireland


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 Rail Paul

Rail Paul

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 21,158 posts

Posted 15 March 2005 - 02:07 PM

Nice short article in the Wall Street Journal about travel to Cork


Where to Drink: Dan Lowery's Tavern - (13 MacCurtain St.; Tel: 353-21-45-05-071). Or try the Hi-B (short for Hibernian Bar), The hardest part is finding the entrance -- an unmarked door leading to the third-floor hairdresser's. (108 Oliver Plunkett St.; Tel: 353-21-42-72-758).

Mutton Lane Inn, which opened in 1842. Its impressive beer menu features rarities with names like Kwak and Val Dieu Blonde. (Mutton Lane 3, off St. Patrick Street.; Tel. 353-21-42-73-471). And the Beamish and Crawford Brewery has tours that end with a pint. (South Main Street; Tel. 353-21-49-11-100)

Where to Eat: The English Market offers gourmet food stalls plus the Farmgate Cafe upstairs, serving traditional dishes including corned beef and tripe and drisheen, made out of sheep stomach in cream sauce with blood pudding on the side. (Princess Street entrance; Tel. 353-21-42-78-134).
For one of Ireland's best vegetarian restaurants, try Cafe Paradiso. (16 Lancaster Quay; Tel. 353-21-42-77-939).
Isaac's, a trendy bistro on one of Cork's traditional thoroughfares, offers something more eclectic (Ardsallagh goat's cheese served with roasted beetroot and basil vinaigrette) . (48 MacCurtain St.; Tel. 353-21-45-03-805)


Where to Stay: The Imperial Hotel's 90 rooms retain authentic Victorian charm -- (South Mall; Tel. 353-21-42-74-040; www.imperialhotelcork.ie).
Ballymaloe House -- now serves as an inn with 33 rooms and charming gardens. (Shangarry, East Cork; 353-21-46-52-531; www.ballymaloe.com)

Where to Shop: For books try Liam Ruiseal 49-50 Oliver Plunkett Street, or Waterstone's 69 St. Patrick Street. To buy Irish music, head to the Living Tradition, 40 MacCurtain St. Elsewhere, Paul's Lane, off Paul Street, has three antique shops.

What to Skip: Blarney Castle. The home of the Blarney Stone is as close to a tourist trap as any 500-plus-year-old castle can be. Nice gardens but the stone is a somewhat of a letdown, tucked away in the battlements. Entry costs 7. (www.blarneycastle.ie)

In fairness, the Blarney Store offers an enormous range of knitted goods, often seconds and irregulars, at huge discounts. They even process the VAT refunds, as I recall

“It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who gain by the new ones. ”

Niccolò Machiavelli


#2 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 16 July 2006 - 09:41 PM

Hey, thanks, RP. Didn't realize when I first read this that it would come in so handy.

But now, my daughter and her husband are going to be in Cork for a month. He's attending law school there, and I guess you could say she's in charge of keeping up moral support.

They just arrived two days ago and already (she told me on the phone) are dismayed about the cost of the food, and the difficulty of finding anything tasty.

I'm copying this article to her forthwith.

And if anyone else reading this has any thoughts, ideas, desire to hang with a couple of Texans, please let me know. They dragged their golf clubs alll the way across the pond, so golfing info also would be helpful, keeping in mind that they are students and on a very tight budget.

Thanks...

:blush:

The Voice of America


#3 Rail Paul

Rail Paul

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 21,158 posts

Posted 16 July 2006 - 10:16 PM

Charles McGrath had a NYT article about touring golf courses in the north of Ireland a few weeks ago. The service he engaged specializes in planning golf tours, and obtaining visitor arrangements.

The Old Head at Kinsale is a relatively short distance from Cork City, and the golf course there is said to be very highly regarded. The area around Kinsale is quite nice on its own, we stayed there in 2004.

Irish Pro Golf Tours

“It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who gain by the new ones. ”

Niccolò Machiavelli


#4 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 16 July 2006 - 10:35 PM

Thanks. The photos at that website are glorious. But I suspect it's a little out of their price range, as my daughter is working fulltime as a school teacher in order to put her hubby through law school.

I'm hoping there exists such a thing in Ireland as cheap municipal courses.

Anyone have any experience with that?

The Voice of America


#5 Blondie

Blondie

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,284 posts

Posted 17 July 2006 - 12:57 PM

I think the Old Head course greens fees are at least $300 :blush: A quick search turned up Fernhill Country Club in the southern suburbs of Cork City which is a very reasonable 20 euros on weekdays.

I'd recommend they ask in a golf or sporting goods shop for suggestions as well.

Assuming they are in Cork City, please tell her to check out the English Market for food shopping.

BlondieNY.com

 

"Finally something intelligent."


#6 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 17 July 2006 - 02:25 PM

I think the Old Head course greens fees are at least $300.


She told me that they went, the first day, to a course that had been highly recommended, walked in, asked how much, sighed and turned around and went right back out to the car.

I'll have to let them know about the Fernhill Country Club. Much more in their price range.

And the English Market as well.

Thanks.

The Voice of America


#7 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 03 August 2006 - 06:12 PM

Just heard from my daughter with this:

"Also, we found a restaurant that MUST be talked about on your food board. It's in Doolin, right by the Cliffs of Moher, and called Bruach na Haille. The food wasn't just 'good for Ireland,' it was of the highest caliber anywhere. And, it wasn't all that expensive. We shared the goat cheese with carmelized onions appetizer and 2 people had the seafood soup. Those two (Wade and Ed) immediately ceased conversing because they were completely focused on the soup! Then, for dinner we either had salmon or steak and both were divine. Truly awesome dishes. We met the chef and she was so gracious and lovely. It was the only time that Wade and I have left an Irish restaurant feeling like it was time and money well spent. YOU MUST tell others to stop by that place. You either need reservations or be willing to wait for a long time. We naturally were forced to do the latter, but found refuge in the pub next door."

The Voice of America


#8 Rail Paul

Rail Paul

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 21,158 posts

Posted 03 August 2006 - 09:53 PM

Brauch na Haille Restaurant

“It must be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to plan, more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to manage than a new system. For the initiator has the enmity of all who would profit by the preservation of the old institution and merely lukewarm defenders in those who gain by the new ones. ”

Niccolò Machiavelli


#9 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 03 August 2006 - 11:05 PM

Hey, RP, thanks!

The Voice of America


#10 Adam Lawrence

Adam Lawrence

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 470 posts

Posted 04 August 2006 - 10:02 AM

For good value golf in southwest Ireland, if they are up for a bit of a road trip and want to see a really traditional links - one of the oldest in Ireland - Dooks (www.dooks.com) on the Dingle Peninsula in Co. Kerry is terrific. I think the weekday green fee is about 70 euros, which might be a bit steep, but it's a whole load cheaper than the famous links of western Ireland. Places like Ballybunion, Lahinch etc, tend to run about 150 euros minimum. Old Head is obscene, and although the views are tremendous knowledgeable observers say the golf is lacking.

Cork Golf Club was redesigned by Alister MacKenzie, the architect of Augusta and Cypress Point, in 1927. The green fee is close to 100 euros, but I note they have a student rate of Eu20. I don't know the course but any MacKenzie is worth playing.
I got vision and the rest of the world wears bifocals.

#11 Jaymes

Jaymes

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,449 posts

Posted 04 August 2006 - 04:37 PM

For good value golf in southwest Ireland, if they are up for a bit of a road trip and want to see a really traditional links - one of the oldest in Ireland - Dooks (www.dooks.com) on the Dingle Peninsula in Co. Kerry is terrific. I think the weekday green fee is about 70 euros, which might be a bit steep, but it's a whole load cheaper than the famous links of western Ireland. Places like Ballybunion, Lahinch etc, tend to run about 150 euros minimum. Old Head is obscene, and although the views are tremendous knowledgeable observers say the golf is lacking.

Cork Golf Club was redesigned by Alister MacKenzie, the architect of Augusta and Cypress Point, in 1927. The green fee is close to 100 euros, but I note they have a student rate of Eu20. I don't know the course but any MacKenzie is worth playing.


I'm emailing this info to them today. Thanks again, everyone.

The Voice of America


#12 Blondie

Blondie

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,284 posts

Posted 03 March 2016 - 02:50 AM

Just realized I never reported on my trip after I left Dublin for Cork. Ballymaloe is technically East Cork, but I figured I'd bury it here instead of starting a Ballymaloe thread, because I'm praying that this was an aberration.

 

First, I hate writing negative reviews, so usually I just don't. I forget about the place and move on. Not this time. Tá brón orm, Darina.

 

I stopped by earlier in the day to check out the grounds and venue for the Jack Lukeman show at 8pm. It was in the old Grainstore, which is now a sleek event space beside the main house. I browsed in the shop and had a coffee and some sort of cake in the cafe. Darina was entertaining a group a few tables away. She seems like a wonderful person, so it pains me to say this:

 

Dinner at Ballymaloe was a crushing disappointment. My hopes weren't sky-high because this was a set menu specifically for showgoers, but keep in mind I'd been dying to go for like 20 years and it has a sterling reputation. 

 

When I arrived, a man took my coat and asked for my small (purse-size) backpack which also acts as my camera bag. I told him I'd like to keep it with me, and instead of saying, "OK", he said, "You don't trust us?" in a manner I can't describe, but it made me instantly uncomfortable. Kind of snarky. I told him it contained my photo equipment and if it went missing, it would ruin my holiday, but I feel like I shouldn't have had to explain why I want to keep my bag in my sight.

 

Then he asked my name, so I told him and also spelled my surname to make it easier for him to find, as it's frequently misheard in Ireland as a common name that starts with a different letter. Carroll is the mistaken name, for those of you who know my real name, so you can see how different they are. I was crisply told, "We can spell here". My jaw dropped. I wish the indignities ended there.

 

The place looks tired, the waitress' uniforms were dated, and there was a leak in the ceiling nearby. I was surprised to see a tablecloth laying on the floor beside an empty table across the room. So surprised I took a photo of it, and it was still there when I left. I feel like that's a detail a place like this shouldn't miss.

 

The food was unmemorable. As in I couldn't remember anything I ate until I found my notes. That's very unlike me when I'm dining somewhere I'm excited about. I mean, I'm no Daisy, but my memory is decent. For the record, the starter was steamed Ballycotton shrimp (just ok) and the main was a tender but underseasoned pork loin. Apparently I had chocolate mousse for dessert.

 

I arrived at 6, had the dessert cart offered to me at 6:45 while I was still waiting for my second glass of wine. Keeping in mind that the 8pm show was a 1 minute walk away and the place wasn't close to full, I don't why they rushed me. I was also the only table I saw that wasn't offered petit fours (which were listed as being part of the set menu). 

 

Ugh. Just typing that up made me feel queasy and uncomfortable like I did that night. Thank god Jack L was really, truly amazing, or it would have been by far the worst evening of my trip. 

 

I couldn't find a decent YouTube video from the night, but I urge you to watch this Irish tv appearance so you can see what I'm talking about. He's introduced with a quote from Frank Sinatra's musical director: "After playing with every popular singer in the world, including Sinatra, I'm still in awe of this man's voice". 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


BlondieNY.com

 

"Finally something intelligent."


#13 Blondie

Blondie

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,284 posts

Posted 03 March 2016 - 03:01 AM

Funny aside, I just googled "Ballymaloe review dated" to see if I was the only one*, and apparently AA Gill had slated them less than a year before my visit. If anyone has access to the Sunday Times archive, I'd love to see the full review, but here's how the Irish Times reported it.

 

I'm almost relieved because although I'm happy to not agree with AA Gill on anything, in this case he makes me feel like I wasn't crazy.

 

* It's very unlike me, but I didn't bother to read any Ballymaloe reviews before going because I was more worried about booking in Dublin (where incidentally I hit it out of the park).


BlondieNY.com

 

"Finally something intelligent."