Some Things Irish This Way Comes

“The artist is the creator of beautiful things.

To reveal art and conceal the artist is art’s aim.”

– Oscar Wilde

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Before we leave River Liffey in Dublin, I think it would be good to highlight Irish fare and some local ales. I will not pretend to be a beer connoisseur so I won’t really have much to say about it except…cheers y’all!

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Home baked Irish Soda Bread from Coolakay Bed & Breakfast in Enniskerry.

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Followed by the traditional Irish breakfast. Every breakfast comes with a half tomato.

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The Irish breakfast at Bramble Rock B & B includes the black and white blood pudding. Our B & B host explains that every village has their own blend of spices, seeds, oatmeal…and blood (usually from a pig) too. Sound appetizing? Well, do notice the half tomato again.

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Like fine wine, Odd tries his best to pair local ale with dinner.

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The Old Forge Inn in Enniskerry serves Beer Battered Cod N’ Chips in an adorable fryer basket. I thought it was the cutest thing ever.

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Then I see it again at The Coach House in Roundwood. Neat-O.

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This is where a young couple at the next table stare intensely at us. We notice they are speaking German, not that it’s important, but it shows we are sitting fairly close. I’ve had looks before but not like this. Is our mixed family really bizarre? Has the circus come to town? I order a beer too. Oh drama, look what you’ve done to me!

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Salmon is consistently raised on a bed of potatoes.

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At The Norseman in Temple Bar, it’s balancing over wilted spinach, mashed potatoes and sautéed leeks. (Like a true Gemini, I seem to take pictures in pairs.)

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A dark stout pairs well with the Guiness Stew at The Lynhams of Laragh. I think Odd is getting the hang of this.

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He orders another…as we are spending hours examining political correctness. With every drink, we find more reasons to discuss if it actually hinders or enables society – are we just sugar coating reality or does it in fact make a difference? Has it gone so far that people have lost the true meaning of sensitivity? On and on it went with examples even from the beloved children’s character, Pippi Longstocking. Yes, even Pippi got dragged into our conversation.

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As we wait for dinner at the Wicklow Heather in Glendalough, Karina recites The Preface to The Picture of Dorian Gray – by Oscar Wilde, Irish writer/poet. We try to analyze.

“Those who find beautiful meanings in beautiful things are the cultivated. For these there is hope. They are the elect to whom beautiful things mean only beauty….The moral life of man forms part of the subject-matter of the artist, but the morality of art consists in the perfect use of an imperfect medium. No artist desires to prove anything…It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors…”

But then he ends it with, “All art is quite useless.”

Hmmm…I am disappointed by his cynicism yet intrigued. I think I need a drink.

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At the top of the Guinness Storehouse, we stop at The Gravity Bar to enjoy a 360 degree view. We learn that The Wicklow Mountains is a source of water for the Guinness brewery. The circle is complete.

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Guinness – deep, dark and mysterious.

DSC08454Until we meet again, Dublin…

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