I love my food and one of the first things I do after I’ve booked a holiday is to research all of the restaurants I might decide to eat at during my stay. Looking at the Irish city of Cork, it definitely seems like the perfect place for foodies.
From top restaurants to festivals entirely dedicated to food, I don’t think you’ll be hungry when holidaying in Cork. Below are some of my reasons why I think the destination is ideal for a culinary adventure – and I’m sorry if I’ve got your tummy rumbling!
Scheduled for July 28th to August 6th this year, the Cork City International Gourmet Festival sounds right up my street. What’s not to love? Days packed with the best restaurants and producers in and around Cork giving away samples, showing the latest cooking tricks and offering diner discounts for their eateries. The festival strives to promote Cork as the food capital of Ireland, and I certainly think it is in with a good chance of taking the title. One of the highlights of the event is the Jazz Brunch, which tends to be held on the last day and is a great way to wrap up the festival.
Orchids at Hayfield Manor
One of the most renowned restaurants in Cork is Orchids at the Hayfield Manor Hotel. As you can expect from a restaurant housed in a lavishly-decorated five-star hotel, the cuisine here is top notch. The tasting menu is a great option if you want to sample a little bit of the best dishes, so save some spending money for it. Some examples of cuisine on the current menu include green pea veloute with parma ham tortellini and lavender foam, slow roast belly of free range pork, fondant potato, tender cabbage, seared foie gras, caramelised apple and cider jus, and sea salt and caramel parfait with toasted marshmallows and chocolate sauce.
A Taste of West Cork Food Festival
If you’ve been looking at cheap car hire in Cork and found a good deal, make sure you head to Skibbereen, which is hosting the A Taste of West Cork Food Festival between September 10th and 16th. While it’s around an hour and a half away from the city centre, there’s a load to see in this West Cork destination if you want to make a full day of it. From cooking demonstrations and food markets to tasting and banquets (not to mention guided walks, children’s activities and competitions), the event is a great way to indulge your passion for food.
Cork’s modern cuisine
You can’t go wrong with a large bowl of hearty Irish stew and soda bread, not to mention a full breakfast complete with both black and white pudding. However, what’s really exciting about Cork at the moment is that it’s really up and coming on the food scene, which is generating some fantastic talent and modern dishes. Chefs are making the most of Ireland’s amazingly-fresh seafood such as oysters, estate venison, Atlantic sea vegetables, free-range beef, handmade chocolates and its rich butter. Creative dishes are increasingly popping up on menus and it’s fantastic to see traditional ingredients being used in new ways.
Have you ever been to Cork? Leave your favourite dishes and restaurants below, so future visitors to the Irish city can tuck into some great cuisine.