A weekend away…in Ireland

Hi all! I hope you had a great Halloween weekend, and started well this new week! From my side, this weekend my partner and I took a break to one of the European capital cities we wanted to discover since a long time: Dublin! We really enjoyed this young (50% of the population of this city is under 30) and welcoming city, where the people know how to party.

As we wanted to discover the legendary sense of hospitality of the Irish people, we decided to book two nights in a B&B a bit outside of the city center: http://www.beechlodge.ie/. In this B&B, the owner – Gerry – just makes you feel at home and is very helpful. He provided us good tips to travel for a cheap price to the city center. He also cooks delicious and nutritious breakfasts, which make feel full for a long time!

Dublin is full of fascinating places, where you can learn about the Irish history: the Trinity College, the Dublin Castle, the Kilmainham Goal and many other places that I will not detail here as you can find information about it in any Dublin website or tourist office. Many tourists rush to the Guinness Storehouse, which is actually not the working brewery, but just a museum where you will get to know the history of the brand (and get a chance to drink a fresh pint of the black thing :).

Do not miss the Jameson whisky distillery: even if you are not the biggest fan of whisky, you will learn interesting facts about the Irish whisky (I did not know that it was distilled 3 times whereas the Scotch is only distilled twice, for instance). And of course, you will get some whisky to taste. I personally drunk it pure to enjoy the flavours, my partner had it in a long drink, which was really good too. You also have a bar at the entrance if you want to try some more: I really recommend you the Irish coffee, which was just the best I ever drunk: not to sweet, not to strong, with good cream on top. Just perfect! Even our host for the weekend, who is a true whisky lover, recommend it to his guests.

In the evening, you have many different options to dine out: many restaurants offering from the traditional Irish stew to the most exotic dishes. As we were having a walk in Temple Bar – which is quite touristic – we found it a bit difficult to find a place to eat which was not overpriced (come on, who is ready to pay for €15 for a margarita pizza?!).

After a while, we passed a little cute cafe: Hippety’s Cafe  – Fownes Street –  Upper Temple Bar. First, the decoration really caught our eyes: it is absolutely girly, colorful and deliciously retro. The decoration looks like it comes from an auction, but it is really cosy and welcoming (lots of cushions to relax on, great music playlist and you can also borrow playing cards). The owners opened this place eight weeks ago, so the menu list is not huge. Their dishes are not over sophisticated, but all the ingredients are freshly prepared and very well-seasoned. They offer quiches, salads, cakes, cupcakes. My partner chose the salmon salad (the salmon was still warm when the plate came on the table!) and I tried the Irish cheeses platter which was served with a delicious tomato chutney and self-made garlic bread. Everything was tasty, and nice portions were served. It is definitely a great place to have a 5 o’ clock tea (the cakes seem lovely) or a quick meal.

This was a really refreshing weekend in Dublin: mainly due to the warm welcome of the Irishpeople who were very helpful with us. I hope we brought back home some of the “luck of the Irish” 🙂 until we come back there – probably for some days of hiking.

If you have been to Ireland: are there any other places you would like to recommend? Feel free to leave a comment!

Sláinte! (Cheers in Irish Gaelic)

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