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    "Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful we must carry it with us or we find it not."

    R. W. Emerrson

    Entries in Dublin (2)


    Bringing Back Cocktail Hour - Dublin, Ireland

    As soon as Noreen’s “Dinner and Drinks for Two” sponsorship came in, we knew exactly where we were going to spend it – Ireland.  The weather in Dublin turned cold and rainy, so we sought a welcoming pub that would warm our bellies with hearty fare.  Attracted by the soft, muffled sound of Irish music, we stopped in our tracks and entered The Porterhouse Brewing Company.  A quick perusal of the menu confirmed that this was the place for us.

    The ground floor was packed, so we saddled up to a wooden table on the second floor where we could hear the live music.  We ordered a half dozen Carlingford Oysters, baked with smooth salmon butter and topped with salmon chunks and breadcrumbs. This deliciously rich starter could have been a meal on its own, but we were in no rush, so we sipped our locally brewed Porterhouse Red, and a smooth-tasting Oyster Stout in anticipation of the main course.

    It wasn’t long before two traditional dishes arrived to weigh down our table.  Matt sliced into the tender roast beef in red wine gravy served with more-than-generous portions of roast vegetables and incredibly good Yorkshire pudding while Jenn started into the bacon and cabbage dish.  This wasn’t any ordinary American bacon, it was more like a giant slab of marbled ham coated with whole grain mustard and brown sugar, topped with a creamy white sauce, all displayed atop crunchy shredded cabbage.

    At the conclusion of our indulgent meal, we raised our glasses and proposed a fitting toast to Noreen’s generosity, “May love and laughter light your days, and warm your heart and home.  May good and faithful friends be yours wherever you may roam.”


    Guinness Stew and Irish Flu

    Seeking the comfort of pub food and familiar language, we hopped a flight from Madrid, Spain to Dublin, Ireland where we encountered very friendly people and unseasonably nice weather.  We spent many days walking around the city, weaving through the crowded streets to some of the main tourist venues, and enjoying a pint of Guinness at the end of the brewery tour.  Like usual, we found greater pleasure blending in with the locals at Oxmantown coffee shop, which dealt out the most amazing sandwiches, and taking in Wuthering Heights at the historic Gate Theater.

    Another highlight was our excursions to neighboring towns like Howth and Dun Laoghaire.  Howth offered a beautiful and refreshing 12 km hike along the coast which reminded us how much we love walking through the many splendors of nature.  Dun Laoghaire engaged us with its Maritime Museum and a complementary exhibit of photos from Ernest Shackleton's ill-fated Antarctic exploration during the early years of WWI.

    For our final few days in Ireland, we'd planned a trip down to Cork.  Those plans were detoured when we both encountered what we dubbed "the Irish flu" - A 48 hour illness that took the wind out of our sails and demanded a sedate recovery period.  Cork will have to wait for a future visit to Ireland, one in which we hope to stretch our hiking legs to further shores.