If you go to the foodie destination, The Delgany, that I wrote about in the last blog post and if you over indulge in buttery croissants and if you feel the need to take some exercise afterwards the perfect spot to do so – Kindlestown Wood – is very close by.
If you are going to write a blog post about a food establishment it is, I think, a tad unfair to rock up to check it out just as it opens. But that’s exactly what I did this week when, having spotted on Twitter some details of a new food venture in County Wicklow, I visited ‘The Delgany’ for breakfast in its first week of trading. Twice!
It is an immutable law of blogging that whomsoever is in possession of a blog will sooner or later publish a what-is-in-my-handbag post. I have managed to blog for just over two years without doing so, until today.
Not having set foot in Kilkenny city or county for over nine years it was a tad strange to find myself there, like a homing pigeon who had temporarily shifted its domicile, three times in as many months this year. What is the Universe trying to tell me? The first two trips were tenuously related: I was in Kilkenny city in late February with friends and I returned in March to collect a small piece of pottery I bought at an exhibition on that earlier trip.
In the past I rarely described myself as creative, I think that’s because I felt that applying the adjective creative to anyone implied they had stellar levels of talent. And stellar levels of talent, for anything, I definitely don’t have. However, I have finally accepted, what everyone else probably realized all along, that we are all creative in our own way.
I recently had an existential showdown with some bananas. As existential showdowns go it wasn’t in the same league as Oscar Wilde’s with the wallpaper in a Parisian hotel, where he reputedly uttered the immortal line: ‘one of us has got to go’, while lying on his deathbed and looking at said wallpaper.
When I walked through the door of The Fumbally, for the first time, a few months ago, I knew that it was my sort of café. I loved the decor and was struck by the ambiance. I ordered and crossed my fingers and toes hoping that I would like the food as much as I liked the place. And I did. As it’s off my beaten track I don’t get back there often. Last Friday I left home without scarfing down breakfast so when I found myself a few kilometres away from The Fumbally I made a small detour to sample again The Fumbally’s ‘Eggs with Gubeen Cheese’.
Last Saturday blithely ignoring that it was the sort of grim rain-sodden day that makes venturing outdoors foolhardy, I decided to go to the farmers’ market (Saturdays 10am to 4pm) at Kilruddery House, a historic house in County Wicklow that has been home to the Earls of Meath since the early 17th century.
What with a soft blue sky filled with sportive fluffy white clouds which were backlit by sunshine and some real warmth in the air, last Saturday felt like the end of the current glacial age had finally arrived. The meteorological deities had, for once, come up trumps as last Saturday was also the day I planned to make a return trip to Kilkenny. It’s less than two months since I was last there so I wouldn’t normally have returned so soon except that I needed to collect a ceramic tree I bought, on my recent trip, at the Future Beauty exhibition in the National Craft Gallery.
I think that shopping for food as close as possible to where it is bred or grown and/or in a retail outlet where the owners can give you chapter and verse on the provenance of all the items they stock is an eminently sensible idea. The Waterfall Farm shop is a place that melds the close to source ideal, as it sells lamb from Waterfall Farm direct to the public, with the wished for good product knowledge as the owners are totally au fait with the origin and other details of the hand-picked range of mainly artisan foods that they sell.