So today, the plan was to try and go fishing for sprat or catch crabs in Youghal (as loosely advertised on the town’s website). Apparently, these are both “summer only” activities. Anyone who has ever lived in Ireland gets that that’s a joke. An Irish summer can consist of a matter of hours or days, depending on the year, and your patience. In any event, there was none of either to be had today in Youghal or Ardmore. So, we improvised.
My new thing today, then, consisted of eating lunch in the bar of the Michelin-starred restaurant at the Cliff House Hotel in Ardmore (ya, I know, life is rough). In the words of any solid twelve step program, the first step is admitting you have a problem, and I am the first to admit that I LOVE FOOD. There, I’ve said it. So, bring on the cheese platter! Is this a problem??
From Ardmore, I continued north to the only proper city in Ireland, namely Dublin (it’s time, Corkonians, to get over yourselves and face the ugly truth). A good friend gave me a tour of the northern Dublin neighbourhood of Smithfield, which included a lot of ‘local colour’. The first stop was the Dice Bar for an aperitif. Canadians are kinda popular in Ireland these days, what with all the job opportunities, and apparently baseball caps, as sported here by our friendly bartender, who comped our drinks as a result (although maybe it was just our sparking personalities?). Three cheers for the Jays!
Then, we had a lovely meal at another local Smithfield neighbourhood haunt called Seven Social. I’m thinking this is more West Queen West than Leslieville – very hip and urban, not to mention tasty and delicious. What’s not to like?!! That would also be new, technically speaking. But I personally think the free beer at Dice takes the cake. This is Guinness we’re talking about, people! They may as well be giving away keys to the city.
We followed up the meal with a stop at Ryan’s Bar to complete the evening. Ah, the sweet taste of Bulmer’s Cider. I silently toasted Jon Bon Jovi’s Birthday week, as an homage to the Rock and Roll spirit within us all. Bless.
Am excited for tomorrow, though, as there is supposedly a Travellers’ horse fair. Should be interesting, on multiple levels!