A big thank you and some final questions

May 1st, 2014, 12:01 PM
  #1  
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A big thank you and some final questions

First of all, let me just say thank you to everyone who has had a hand in planning our trip to Ireland this summer. We got terrific recommendations and advice from New York experts ( we'll be there for two days on the way out and one day on the way home) and a ton of help from Ireland experts, in particular ,Tony, master of all information Irish. I couldn't have planned it without your help.

I have now moved on to more practical questions . Any great restaurant suggestions for Dublin, Ballsbridge area, Clifden, Kenmare and Cahir ? Maybe two in each area, something more foodie oriented and something more moderately priced and family friendly. That way we have some different options. We'd love to hear some great local music if possible.

Do we need to be 3 hours early for our return flight out of Shannon? We should only have carry on luggage.

Thanks again.
Cjar is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 12:38 PM
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Rolys in Ballsbridge has been popular for years - and with good reason.
The Abbeyglen Castle Hotel in Clifden has a pretty good dining room - although the after dinner scene in the bar downstairs is part of the whole experience as well; hard to get home once the piano and the sing-song gets underway...
Chez Hans in Cashel has been around for years - almost always a good sign.
SeeDee is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 12:53 PM
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If pre clearing through Shannon give 2 hours.

I will no doubt have said I prefer to taste/eat food than pay for it but for Clifden. http://www.offthesquarerestaurant.com/ the http://www.foyleshotel.com/marconi.html has improved over the last couple of years (still don't recommend the hotel itself) Mannions does the best of the Pub grub followed possibly by Kings.. The "Foodie" option Mitchell's? I walked through their door for the last time 3 years ago, never to return.

Kenmare http://www.limetreerestaurant.com/ or http://www.lansdownearms.com/ then http://www.odonnabhain-kenmare.com/gastro-bar.php

are you staying in Cahir?
Tony2phones is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 06:50 PM
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We like Gallaghers Boxty House in Temple Bar. It was really very good. We eat pub food a lot and my fav is the seafood chowder that you can find everywhere. We went to Howth for fresh seafood, north of Dublin and it was a nice trip on the train with beautiful views of the water. Coffee at Bewleys on Grafton is nice.
flpab is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 07:15 PM
  #5  
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Flpab and seedee - thank you for the suggestions. It's so hard to blindly choose a restaurant. Our family loves food. It doesn't have to be expensive or fancy, but it has to be delicious.

Tony2phones - we are actually staying in Bansha ,but I think Cahir Castle will be towards the end of the day and we may choose to eat before returning to our accommodations. I'll have to check out the websites for your other options.Not sure we want to try Mitchell's if you refuse to cross the threshold ever again. It sounds like things didn't go well.

Thanks again everyone.
Cjar is offline  
May 1st, 2014, 07:50 PM
  #6  
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Some of these menus have me salivating. Can't wait.
Cjar is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 12:09 AM
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I'd endorse the recommendation of Roly's Bistro in Ballbridge. Another option in the area is O'Connell's in Donnybrook (walking distance from Ballsbridge): http://www.oconnellsdonnybrook.com/.

I haven't dined in Clifden for years. There are a number of country house hotels in Connemara with ambtious kitchens, and if you are prepared to drive, you might try Cashel House Hotel: http://cashel-house-hotel.com/.
Padraig is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 12:14 AM
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I'm not a huge fan of Rolys but it has been popular for years as SeeDee says.

The French Paradox in Ballsbridge is wonderful if you like tasting plates of French cheese, charcuterie, rilettes, crusty bread and excellent wine. Not recommended for traditionalists who like a hot meal for dinner though. This one and Mulberry Garden (see below) would be my foodie recommendations.

Ballsbridge suffers from a lack of good restaurants, but there are many restaurants there, so it's good to get recommendations in advance so you don't inadvertently go wrong. My second choice there would be Bella Cuba, but it's a bit pricey and while nice wouldn't be amazing. If you are prepared to go a little further afield, Mulberry Garden in Donnybrook is fantastic, and is a short taxi ride or a 20 minute walk away, shorter depending on where in Ballsbridge you are staying. It's only open Thurs, Fri and Sat nights though.

If you are in Ballsbridge on a Sunday there's not much happening, but there is an area a short walk away, down behind Lansdowne Road rugby stadium where there is a ton of wonderful brunch places, it's the Beggars Bush / South Lotts Road area. Those places are also open in the evenings and include a couple of gastropubs, a great pizza place (Paulie's Pizza), a wonderful neighbourhood cafe/restaurant (Farmer Browns) and much more. There's also a nice looking cafe in the national print museum which is around there, I don't know what the food is like though. That area would be a short hop in a taxi or a 15 min walk from Ballsbridge, shorter depending on what part of Ballspridge you are staying in. I'd head to that area for your cheap and cheerful night, and there's a pub there (Slatterys) which always has a great atmosphere if you fancy a pint after the meal.
littlejane is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 04:28 AM
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http://www.thechurch.ie/ Arthur Guinness was married here. It was in ruins and they saved it. Very interesting and beautiful now.

We like The Porter also. They make their own beer and the food is good.
flpab is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 04:53 AM
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The Porterhouse and the Church are both good tourist spots, but nowhere near Ballsbridge...
littlejane is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 05:32 AM
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As to the 3 hours early arrival at Shannon question -- the answer is, "Yes".

Even with no bags to check, the lines at the Check In counters are long and slow moving. After that, you pass through Irish Security - which is minimal and enter the Departures area (with Duty Free and Vat Back).
After that, you'll pass through US-style Security screening, gather a Customs and Immigration form, fill it out -- and then queue up in a rather lengthy line for US Customs and Passport Control.
Once through that, you enter the actual gate area -- and boarding usually begins 30-45 minutes prior to scheduled departure.
It all actually SEEMS quite rushed -- even WITH three hours!
Itallian_Chauffer is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 11:51 AM
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Feehan's bar Main St in Cashel (very close to Cahir)... I just had lunch there about 1 month ago and loved the atmosphere as well as the Seafood Chowder!

Here's another tip however: get to the airport in time to do your VAT thing if you plan to get the refund. Someone in Dublin's airport told me I could do it from home (USA) and I've found it to be near impossible.
jilllovestravel is offline  
May 2nd, 2014, 03:52 PM
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littlejane, she asked for Dublin, Ballsbridge area, surely she will be in the city but if not then so sorry.
flpab is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 05:47 AM
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I have never been to The Church because of the number of negative reports I have had from people whose views I respect.

Like littlejane, I like The French Paradox, but I think it's the sort of place that people might either love or hate.

I also like Bella Cuba, but it might not have that extra edge of appeal for people who travel from the US, and who I presume have plenty of opportunity to sample Cuban food.
Padraig is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 12:59 PM
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Padraig, I think some people think they will surely go to hell stepping inside but it was better than letting go to a pile of rocks. It is worth a drink at least. I went when it first opened and have always taken people by it to at least see it. Mozart practiced the Messiah on the organ there they say. Anyhoo, it isn't in Ballsbridge.
flpab is offline  
May 3rd, 2014, 01:36 PM
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The comments I heard were not on the building, but on the food and the service - particularly the service. I think almost everybody in Ireland is in favour of finding new uses for redundant church buildings.
Padraig is offline  
May 4th, 2014, 07:49 PM
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Ok we'll have to check out O' Connels. Unfortunately we will be in Ballsbridge on a Sunday so I guess Mulberry Garden is out. French Paradox sounds great, but if our teenagers aren't up to it ,we may head to Farmer Brown's, Rolys or Paulies.

Flpab- thank you. We appreciate all recommendations. My only reason for wanting to stay close to Ballsbridge is that we arrive that morning and may find we are fighting a losing battle with jet lag.

Padraig - thanks for the link. I will check out O' Connells.

I think with all of this help we can't help but have some great dining experiences.

Tony2 phones- I am not sure what is meant by preclearing. We have not trevelled abroad that much.
I guess we"re safest not pushing our luck and giving the 3 hours as suggested by Italian _ Chauffer .
Cjar is offline  
May 5th, 2014, 01:02 AM
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Pre clearance is an option on Many (not all) flights to the US. where you clear US customs here rather than when you get home stateside.
Tony2phones is offline  
May 5th, 2014, 01:28 AM
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When we go to O'Connell's I usually order the guinea fowl. It's mainly because I like guinea fowl, and you don't find it on menus in Ireland very often; but they also make a great production of it, bringing it on a cart and carving it at the table.
Padraig is offline  
May 5th, 2014, 12:28 PM
  #20  
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Tony - thank you I'll see if that option is available to us.

Padraig - that sounds great. If we make it to O Connell's , that will head to the top of the list.
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