Sunday, June 29, 2014

Review : Zuni Restaurant & Boutique Hotel, Kilkenny

It was time for a break. A staycation, if you like.  We had three days off together and didn't know where to go.  A few weeks ago, I was a guest of Trail Kilkenny at a wonderful long table dinner in Smock Alley which really showcased the best of what the county has to offer, from both a food and craft perspective.  The decision was made - we were off to Kilkenny.  I've eaten at Zuni many times before and love Maria Raftery's style of cooking so decided to take advantage of Zuni's great midweek offer : 2 nights accommodation in their boutique hotel with breakfast and one dinner in the restaurant for €250.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Review : Taste of Dublin 2014

After a well-deserved break in the new food capital of Ireland, Kilkenny, we thought we'd round off our holiday by visiting Taste of Dublin.  We missed it last year and I was wondering if it would be the same old layout with the same old exhibitors as had been the case year on year.  I was very pleasantly surprised with the 2014 event.  A samba group was playing at the entrance to bring a smile to the face of everybody queuing, and once inside, there were plenty of Florin vendors so no lengthy lines to buy the official currency.

The layout has changed dramatically with the exhibition theatre on your left and the main music stage on the right which works so much better, allowing the crowds to sit on the grass or the many Elephant beanbags with a drink in the sun, enjoying the acts.  We really liked Frankie Says who had lots of people up on the dancefloor.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Review : Le Barbier Lillois, Lille, France

While wandering around Lille on our weekend away, we discovered Le Barbier Lillois.  Cobbled paths lead to a corner building on Rue de la Monnaie in the old town. A glass door opens into a long narrow room with a butchers counter against the wall & cosy tables beside the long glass window.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Review : Bread on the Table

There is nothing quite like the smell of freshly baked bread.  Once I get the scent, I automatically reach for the butter (Irish salted butter in case you were wondering) to create the perfect partnership.  Supermarkets cottoned onto this years ago and waft the aroma through the store to encourage people to grab a loaf or two.  They also have "artisan" ranges of bread, looking almost like something that your Granny used to make.  A lot of these loaves aren't as they seem though - they're brought into the store frozen and part baked, needing just a quick blast in the oven to give them the finishing touch.  It's actually pretty easy to bake your own bread and Bread on the Table by Valerie O'Connor is the book that will encourage you to roll up your sleeves and turn on the oven.