Irelands Ancient East Food Tour
Irelands Ancient East is a wonderful initiative that covers thousands of years, and much of the food we eat today has remained the same all that time. This tour, Irelands Ancient Feasts explores how sometimes less is more and that sometimes the old ways are the best ways!
This mill is one of Wexfords true hidden gems, one of the last remaining functioning Watermills in Ireland, and the last one still producing flour, it is a thing of beauty to behold.
The mill stands on the site of an earlier mill and other than the addition of a small cottage, built in 1905, it is untouched by our modern world. Owned by the Murphy family, John Murphy is the latest generation to take over and has chosen to open the doors to the Mill in 2018 for the very first time.
On your tour, John will take you through the Mill, explaining how the 2 mile mill race was dug out by hand, many so years ago, how the French Birr Stones at over 200 years old, will see his sons and perhaps grandchildren’s lives before they will be replaced. John will demonstrate how the water powers the mechanisms that turn the millstones, grinding the wheat to flour.
This age old process is no different to the mills that dotted Europe 1000’s of years ago.
At the end of the tour, you will receive a complimentary bag of Ballyminane Stone Ground flour to take home
Heading towards New Ross now, its time to indulge in a little shopping. New Ross is the home of the Wexford Food Family and nowhere is this more evident than in its local shops. The Bakehouse is a traditional Irish bakery that specialises in breads and fruitcakes but has a wide selection of homemade buns, cream cakes and scones. Its the perfect place to try some of our local delicacies!
The Full & Plenty Farm Shop is renowned for their wide selection of local and artisanal foods, much of it seasonal. They also have a great selection of cheeses, alongside homemade butter, raw and non-homogenised milk. You can also pick up many locally made preserves, chutneys and local honey among everything else!
As lunchtime rolls around, we will remain in New Ross and dine at the Victorian inspired Tearooms, The Cracked Teapot
Only open a couple of years it is fast earning itself a strong reputation, and no wonder when the chef Tina insists on using local, organic and free-range ingredients. Ballyhack Smoked Salmon along with Soda Bread made from Ballyminane Flour is a speciality dish, and well worth trying!
The menu changes daily and is heavily influenced by seasonal availability, it also leans heavily toward traditional Irish foods and vegetarian and vegan dishes.
Lunch is not included in the price of the tour, this allows you to choose what you want from the seasonal menu and enjoy a slice of her famous lemon drizzle cake afterwards should you choose!
Moving to on from New Ross, we head towards the small village of Ballyhack, home to the Ballyhack Smokehouse. Here proprietor Micheal Walsh remains as one of the last independent Fishmongers in the area, he also smokes his own salmon using only the traditional beech smoked methods he learnt as a child.
Using an 80 year old Smokehouse, it can take up to three days for the fish to be smoked to perfection, unlike modern smokers that can achieve a similar effect within a few hours. I say similar but in reality, it is nothing like it. One taste of Ballyhack Smoked Salmon and you will quickly appreciate the difference in taste, colour and the rich smoky smell from the beech chippings.
Mick will also explain how the fish is selected, filleted and sold across the county by small fishmongers like himself.
While here, you will have the opportunity to taste the salmon and also receive a 100grm packet to take home and enjoy later
The Arthurstown Brewing Company
This is one of the many quirky breweries scattered across Ireland, housed in the old Farm buildings of the Dunbrody Country House, using water from the well beneath the building and using Barley, grown just a stone’s throw away this is somewhere very special.
Director and Brewer and Farmer Tosh Crosbie will take you through the brewing process, step by step. He’ll tell you all about their signature brews and also their special edition brews, like last years Hook Honey Beer. After the tour, we’ll head next door to The Local, where you can enjoy samples from their signature range before selecting two of your favourites to take home.
Colclough Walled Gardens
Built as part of the Colclough estate around 1810 Colclough Walled Gardens lay forgotten and hidden away in thick woodland by the ruins of Tintern Abbey. But in 2010, thanks to a team of dedicated local gardeners and horticulturists the garden has been restored to its former glory.
These gardens were at one time built to feed the staff and families that lived in the grand country estates. Designed in such a way, that the garden would produce food from early spring to late winter and Colclough is no different, except that it is one of the oldest in Ireland!
A lush abundance of fruit, berries and vegetables burst forth from this garden. Along with many beautiful flowers. Using only the methods used in the Georgian and Victorian era, you will find no pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilisers being used here either!
Every day, ripened fruit and vegetables are collected and are available to purchase using a donation box. And the gardeners themselves are more than happy to stop and pass on a little advice on your own efforts at home
As with all of our tours, this food tour runs a full day and you will be collected and dropped off to and from your accommodation. Due to the size of some of the venues, we are restricted by size and so this tour is only suitable for groups of 6 to 12 people
To book your tour please email us at info@gallivantingtours with your dates and group size!