Hello Fellow Travelers:
Welcome to our world of business information, adventure, birding, botanical gardens, good eating and fine wines. This newsletter provides you with “The Welge Report for Dublin, Ireland“.
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Recognition: We extend special thanks to the people who manage and/or own the institutions, museums and restaurants featured in our guides. In some instances we have relied on their descriptions and photos.
Birding Opps: Info for our birding friends. In and near Dublin you can see these species: Hen Harrier, Red Grouse, Cuckoo, Chiffchaffs, Chaffinches, Song Thrush and Blackcap.
At Dublin Birding (dublinbirding.ie) we meet friendly people for good advice.
Irish Birding (.irishbirding.com/birds) provides a list of sightings and their location.
Here are your Birding Pals (birdingpal.org/Ireland.htm) for Dublin.
Beverages: This is Ireland and the Pub experience is not to be missed.
Transportation: To explore the Dublin region we like the Transport maps and pass. This is our site for public transportation (dublinpass.ie/t-TransportMaps.aspx)
Shopping: Check out Grafton Street and Temple Bar. Our foodie travelers will enjoy Kitchen Complements – M-Sa: 10-6, Th: till 7, Su: 12:30-5:30, South Anne St S, 016 770 734
Business Information: Here is help in regard to your business: (dublinbic.ie/)
Exchange Rates (http://www.x-rates.com/)
Day One: Your first stop is the Guiness Storehouse – Daily: 9:30-5, St James’s Gate, 353 1 408 4800
The Storehouse is laid out over seven floors surrounding a glass atrium shaped in the form of a pint of Guinness.
The ground floor introduces the beer’s four ingredients (water, barley, hops and yeast), and the brewery’s founder, Arthur Guinness.
The Guinness Storehouse story is told through various interactive exhibition areas including ingredients, brewing, transport, cooperage and sponsorship.
Other floors feature the history of Guinness advertising and include an interactive exhibit on responsible drinking. The seventh floor houses the Gravity Bar with views of Dublin where visitors may drink a pint.
The Brewery Bar on the fifth floor offers Irish cuisine, using Guinness both in the cooking and as an accompaniment to food.
Lunch at L’Ecrivain – L: M-F, D: M-Sa, 109a Baggot Street Lower, 353 1 661 1919 is a good value.
You’ll enjoy the rabbit loin with a bacon and leek farce and wild garlic, parsley, salisify puree orthe scallops with black olive gnocchi in a basil, tomato emulsion.
A glass of ‘12 Domaine Schulmberger Pinot Blanc works well with both.
Your next choice is the hake with smoked tomato butterbeans, red chicory and chorizo and the braised daube of beef with horseradish cream, roasted turnip and radish in a garlic herb puree.
The ’11 Domaine Henri Naudin-Ferrand Hautes-Cotes de Nuits is a good match.
Dessert is the chocolate tart with cinnamon sable, saffron mousse, coffee ice cream and chocolate couscous.
To further experience Ireland’s culture we visit the National Gallery of Ireland – M-Sa: 9:30-5:30, Su: 12-5:30, Merrion Square W, 353 1 661 5133
Here you see their collection of European art spanning the 14th to the 20th-century.
The collection includes 14,000 artworks, including 2,500 oil paintings, 5,000 drawings, 5,000 prints and some sculpture, furniture and the world’s most comprehensive collection of Irish art.
We sought a bit of exercise and decided to visit Phoenix Park – Daily: 24/7, 353 1 820 5800
The park has 1,750 acres and features 351 plant species, grasslands, woodlands, wetlands, trees, streams, a deer herd and at least 72 bird species.
It also has the Dublin Zoo – Daily: 9:30-5, that is home to 400 animals and is focused on education and conservation.
The Winding Stair has a local feel– L: M-F, D: Nightly, 40 Lower Ormond Quay, 353 1 8727320
Start with the potted Dingle Bay crab, toasted soda bread and smoked haddock with cherry tomato, spring onion, St. Gall cheese and toast.
For your main the steamed cockles and mussels with crab and shrimp mayo and white cheddar mash is pdg.
Your wine is the ’04 Clearwater Chardonnay from Walpara. Dessert is the rhubarb and blood orange mess.
Day Two: Your day begins at the Queen of Tarts – B,L: Daily, Cows Ln, Dame St, 353 1 633 4681 for espresso and cappuccino.
They have wonderful baked goods and we like the chocolate scone with raspberry preserve. Other good choices are smoked bacon or salmon and potato cakes and poached eggs with potato and leek cakes.
For avid gardeners an important stop is the National Botanic Gardens – Oct-Feb: M-F: 9-4:30, Sa,Su: 10-4:30, Mar-Oct: M-F: 9-5, Sa,Su: 10-6, Glasnevin, 353 1 804 0300.
The gardens were founded in 1795 by the Dublin Society, and today they hold more than 20,000 living plants and millions of dried plant specimens.
There are several architecturally notable greenhouses and large areas with formal gardens and naturalistic settings.
The Gardens’ purpose is to explore, understand, conserve, and share the importance of plants where leisure, recreation and education are combined for our enjoyment.
A favorite lunch place is Fallon & Byrne – L & D: Daily, 11-17 Exchequer St, 353 1 472 1010
The set lunch offers a good value with selections that we enjoy. Your choices for a first course are the poached free-range chicken with orange chutney, herb focaccia and lamb’s leaf salad or the poached Irish salmon plated with apple, fennel salad, whipped avocado and green tea mousse.
And for your second course the pan-fried Goatsbridge sea trout, garlic and thyme infused potato, tomberries in a red pepper vinaigrette and ricotta and spinach tortellini, chive oil, red onion and Parmesan shavings.
Your wine is the ‘12 Ripasso, Torre del Falasco, Veneto. Dessert is the cherry and pistachio Bakewell tart, cherry ice cream with vanilla crème anglaise.
What is it that makes jailhouses rock? Kilmainham Gaol – M-Sa: 9:30-6, Su: 10-6, Inchicore Road, Kilmainham 353 1 453 5984 rocks.
At Kilmainham Gaol we saw what it was like to have been confined in a bastion of punishment and correction.
It offers a profound insight into some of the most disturbing and inspirational themes of modern Irish history.
Leaders of the rebellions of 1798, 1803, 1848, 1867 and 1916 were detained here. Such names as Robert Emmet, Charles Stewart Parnell, leaders of the 1916 Rising and DeValera are associated with the Gaol.
The visit includes a guided tour and exhibition. Access is by guided tour only.
After your jail visit Cousin Jed thought it was a good idea to tour the Old Jameson Distillery – M-Sa: 9-6, Su: 10-6, Bow St, Smithfield Village, 353 1 807 2355
Let your guide take you back in time to lead you through the story of Jameson and learn how three ingredients make Irish whiskey.
Guided tours last one hour and include a signature Jameson drink. Volunteers are selected to partake in a tutored whiskey tasting.
You won’t be disappointed with your dinner at Chapter One – L: Tu-F, D: Tu-Sa, 18-19 Parnell Sq, 353 1 873 2266
With their Four Course menu selections you’ll start with the summer vegetable and leaf salad and the marinated artichokes.
For your second course have the smoked haddock with cockles, mussels and a celeriac puree. The spiced beef with onions, pickled quail eggs, marinated mushrooms and vegetables are a good choice
For your wine with these delights we split a ½ bottle of ’10 L’Abeille de Fieuzal Bordeau Blanc.
Your mains are the loin of rabbit stuffed with parma ham farce and the duck breast with lemon puree and spinach.
The ’07 Jean Michel Stephen Cote Rotie is a good match.
The dessert choice is the morello cherries and orange syrup and Irish coffee (see photo).
Day Three: Breakfast is at KC Peaches – B & L: Daily, Unit 10A Trinity Enterprise Centre, Pearse Street, 353 1 677 0333
Endless varieties of muffins, pastries and scones are on the menu to accompany your tea and coffee.
At Trinity College – M-Sa: 9:30-5, Su: 9:30-4:30, Oct-April: 12-4:30, College Green, 353 1 896 1000 we visited the Old Library and the Book of Kells exhibition.
The main chamber of the Old Library is the Long Room. It is filled with 200,000 of the Library’s oldest books.
When built (between 1712 and 1732) it had a flat plaster ceiling and shelving for books was on the lower level only. By the 1850s these shelves were completely full.
Since 1801 the Library had been given the right to claim a free copy of every book published in Britain and Ireland. In 1860 the roof was raised to allow construction of the present barrel-vaulted ceiling and upper gallery bookcases.
Marble busts line the Long Room, a collection that began in 1743 when 14 busts were commissioned from sculptor Peter Scheemakers.
The busts are of the great philosophers and writers of the western world and also of men connected with Trinity College. The finest bust in the collection is of the writer Jonathan Swift by Louis Francois Roubiliac.
The Book of Kells exhibited at Trinity College was written around the year 800 AD, and is one of the most beautifully illuminated manuscripts in the world.
Its 680 pages of vellum contain the Latin texts of the Four Gospels. Written around 800 AD by Irish monks, probably begun at a monastery in Iona an island off Scotland, and finished at Kells, Co. Meath.
It was later buried in the ground for fear of the Vikings. After being rediscovered it was deposited for safe keeping in Trinity around 1653.
It has been on display in the Old Library at Trinity College Dublin from the mid 19th century, and attracts over 500,000 visitors a year. Since 1953 it has been bound in four volumes.
Two volumes are on public view, one opened to display a major decorated page, and one to show two pages of script. The volums are changed at regular intervals.
The Book of Kells is housed in the Old Library building.
A light lunch at Chez Max-L&D: Daily, 1 Palace St, 01 633 7215 is just right.
For a starter share the duck foie gras terrine with fig chutney. Then the warm goat’s cheese salad with shallot confit, honey and cherry tomatoes or the wild mushroom and sundried tomato tartlet.
Your wine isthe ‘11 Côtes de Duras Domaine des Allegrets Rosé.
The National Museum of Ireland – Tu-Sa: 10-5, Su: 2-5, Collins Barracks, Benburb St, 353 1 677 7444 is another important site.
The Archaeology section has displays on prehistoric Ireland that includes treasures from the Viking and medieval periods plus items from Egypt, Cyprus and the Roman world.
Metal work from Ireland has the Ardagh Chalice, Tara Brooch and the Derrynaflan Hoard.
The Decorative Arts and History section has the Great Seal of the Irish Free State, displays of furniture, silver, ceramics and glassware.
The Soldiers and Chiefs exhibition has military artifacts and memorabilia from 1550 to present.
The Dublin Castle – Dame St, 353 1 645 8800 offers a peek into Irelands heritage.
The Dublin Castle was originally built as a fortification, then it was used as a royal residence, then offices and a courthouse.
Now it is a tourist attraction. You’ll enjoy seeing the State Apartments that are beautifully decorated rooms that are used by the Irish Government for official engagements, heads of state visits and the inauguration of the President every seven years in St. Patrick’s Hall.
The ceiling was painted by Vincenzo Valdre and consists of three panels that show the coronation of King George III, Saint Patrick introducing Christianity to Ireland and King Henry II receiving the submission of Irish Chieftains.
It’s time for some fun and in Dublin that means we are going to Grafton Street. Cousin Jim insists a must see opportunity at the top of Grafton St. is St. Stephen’s Green – Gardens open: M-Sa: 7:30 to Dusk and Su: 9:30-Dusk.
At St. Stephen’s Greens, Ireland’s popular Victorian public park, enjoy the waterfall and Pullham rock. The ornamental lake gives us birding opps and the sculptures are impressive.
Continuing your walk on Grafton you’ll discover the shopping to be great as is the historic atmosphere.
The Boxty House – L & D: Daily, 20-21 Temple Bar, 353 1 677 2762 has a pleasing atmosphere.
They are famous for seafood chowder with smoked fish in a potato broth and their liver pate is served with apple chutney and toasted potato bread.
The Shepard’s Pie made with minced lamb and steamed greens is a signature dish, but you have to have their famous Garlic Boxty that is beef medallions in a whiskey mushroom sauce wrapped in a Boxty pancake.
Dessert is the apple and basil crumble. You’re on your own for a beverage.
Until next time, best wishes and happy travels,
Dick & Dee Welge
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