How to Dine in Ireland
*This post was written in collaboration with Square Meal
A few years ago, I went to Dublin on a hen weekend. You would probably think that all a big group of young girls would think about when they go somewhere like Dublin for the weekend would be drinking, but I can assure you we wanted to make the most of every experience we possibly could. I have been meaning to get back ever since we went because we found some AMAZING places when it came to food. Now that the Coronavirus vaccine has started to open the world back up for us, we can start planning trips. Ireland probably isn’t the first place you would think of for a “foodie” weekend away, but I can assure you if you follow my tips, you will eat and drink like a King!
Book group dining ahead of time
You can imagine how unorganised a group of young girls are on a hen weekend. We pretty much just packed and went. There were quite a few things we wanted to do, and there were a couple of specific restaurants that had been recommended to us. Unfortunately, being such a big group it was really hard for us to get a table anywhere. This is why you should use a website or app ahead of time to book group dining. This way, you do not need to miss out on any places you are keen to try.
Try traditional Irish food as much as you can
Most people only think of Guinness when they think of Irish cuisine. Potentially you might even stretch your mind to an Irish stew. The truth is, there are several great speciality dishes that you can try in Ireland. Most of the cities have restaurants that do traditional Irish food, but if you want to try fresh and locally sourced ingredients travelling outside of the city to somewhere rural is your best bet. Some traditional Irish dishes you might care to try are:
Irish Soda Bread – Soda bread is eaten any time of day, and it is usually enjoyed with a generous helping of butter.
Colcannon and Champ – These are two separate dishes. Colcannon is mashed potatoes with green onions and cabbage, and without the cabbage, it is called Champ.
Black and white pudding – Many people know that black pudding is blood and animal fat, but a lot of people do not realise you can also have white pudding without the blood.
Check out the foods in the region you are travelling to
Like most countries, the food in Ireland and what is classed as “traditional” varies by region. The bread, for example, differs by region and if you are visiting Belfast you might like to try a traditional “Belfast bap”. There is also another kind of bun called the “Waterford Blaas”. Surprisingly, you can also get Irish fudge, so if you are not content with making your Scottish tablet like me, you might consider trying the Irish version.