Wexford: Magic within the Mannequin County

Loading ....


Dunbrody Home

The second oldest operational lighthouse on the planet stands guard over the Irish Sea at Hook Head, Co Wexford

A guestroom at Dunbrody Nation Home Resort. Picture: Fb/Dunbrody Nation Home

Kevin Dundon at Dunbrody Home.

Dunbrody Home

Wexford: Magic within the Mannequin County

Unbiased.ie

Once we pull as much as Dunbrody Nation Home Resort in Wexford, it appears one way or the other acquainted. I’ve seen this stable, sq., climber-clad Georgian constructing earlier than.

https://www.unbiased.ie/life/journey/eire/wexford-magic-in-the-model-county-37649931.html

https://www.unbiased.ie/incoming/article34461669.ece/9c274/AUTOCROP/h342/2016%20Blue%20Ebook%20Dunbrody.jpg

E mail

Once we pull as much as Dunbrody Nation Home Resort in Wexford, it appears one way or the other acquainted. I’ve seen this stable, sq., climber-clad Georgian constructing earlier than.

There’s one thing about the best way it sits within the panorama out right here on the estuary of the Barrow, near the place Wexford, Waterford and Kilkenny meet. I keep in mind the best way the stables sit to the aspect of the home, with the parkland behind.

After which it comes again to me. About 20 years in the past, I used to be right here. The brand new house owners, Kevin and Catherine Dundon, have been mates of a buddy. We referred to as in as they have been doing it up, racing to get able to host their first marriage ceremony. The flooring have been up, there have been wires all over the place and there wasn’t a teabag within the place.

It is a bitter-sweet reminiscence, as we made eejits of ourselves by asking Catherine and Kevin again to our home for one thing to eat, after which, amid a lot fanfare, taking our roast rooster out of the oven. We have been already feeling the stress as Kevin had been head chef on the Shelbourne Resort. “Tah-dah!” we cried, solely to search out we would forgotten to show the oven on and the fowl was pink as a child.

The excellent news is that, 20 years later, the flooring and the wiring are completed. In truth, the place has been remodeled, with a brand new wing and the plush and comfy really feel of a well-run nation home resort.

The outdated home includes a grand entrance, a ritzy cocktail bar and a eating room adorned in a deep shade of pink. There is a luxurious spa and a “pub” referred to as The Native, a gastro-pub serving fish ‘n’ chips wrapped in paper, chipper model, nice burgers and wood-fired pizza. Between eight and 9pm, the barman will toss a coin with you for the worth of your drinks – a 50/50 likelihood of free booze. We win three in a row!



Kevin Dundon at Dunbrody House.
Kevin Dundon at Dunbrody House.


Kevin Dundon at Dunbrody Home.

Dunbrody Home

The second oldest operational lighthouse on the planet stands guard over the Irish Sea at Hook Head, Co Wexford

A guestroom at Dunbrody Nation Home Resort. Picture: Fb/Dunbrody Nation Home

Dunbrody Home

The steady block has additionally been renovated, and is now a cookery college, the place you possibly can join day-long programs. There’s additionally a weekend market within the courtyard, the place Dunbrody produce is bought (we purchased a Dunbrody Christmas pud for €25) alongside native meals and crafts.

The morning after our arrival, I’m booked in for a day’s cookery course referred to as Make Christmas Straightforward. I discover chef Phelim Byrne and sous chef Diane Sinnott within the college and I settle in to discover ways to put together the proper Yuletide feast.

Phelim began his profession at Kelly’s Resort in Rosslare earlier than transferring to The Park in Kenmare, then he took over as head chef at Dunbrody for 4 years, serving up connoisseur dishes to the likes of Bono and Rosanna Davison. He arrange the cookery college and added fruit and vegetable gardens that also present contemporary produce for the restaurant. These days, Phelim runs most of the specialist programs on the college.

There’s an air of calm concerning the demo kitchen. Diane pads about, wiping, chopping, anticipating Phelim’s subsequent transfer. He begins on the turkey and all of the trimmings, together with bread sauce and mulled wine. All myself and my fellow cooks should do is style, study, and benefit from the outcomes on the finish of the day.

And there are many Xmas cheats to takeaway. Planning is every part, says Phelim. Prep your veg and the fowl on Christmas Eve. Do not wash out the turkey cavity – it simply spreads germs. Wrap your stuffing in clingfilm and tinfoil, so it may be sliced like a black pudding, and prepare dinner individually. Make sauces, gravy and mulled wine forward of time and decant into thermos flasks to maintain heat. And perhaps most significantly, in case your visitors preserve trespassing in your kitchen house, pack them off with a powerful Irish espresso.

However we additionally decide up different ideas similar to slice smoked salmon, wafer skinny, so every slice runs from prime to backside of the fillet and accommodates smoke, fish and salt flavours.

Then, at about 4, with minimal fuss, our Christmas dinner is served. The decision? Scrumptious.

That night I am reunited with the husband and our 13-year-old daughter who’ve been exploring the 300 acres of grounds. We sit all the way down to a lavish feast within the resort restaurant and I handle to place away a wonderfully cooked hake with citrus cured broccoli. The husband and daughter share the home particular – a plate of beef ribs with meltingly smooth beef cheeks – and make a very good dent in it. I shake my head on the puds, however they lap up a creme brulee and white chocolate with coconut macaroons and fervour fruit sorbet.



The second oldest operational lighthouse in the world stands guard over the Irish Sea at Hook Head, Co Wexford
The second oldest operational lighthouse in the world stands guard over the Irish Sea at Hook Head, Co Wexford


The second oldest operational lighthouse on the planet stands guard over the Irish Sea at Hook Head, Co Wexford

Dunbrody Home

A guestroom at Dunbrody Nation Home Resort. Picture: Fb/Dunbrody Nation Home

Kevin Dundon at Dunbrody Home.

Dunbrody Home

What with the resort, spa, pub and market, Kevin and Catherine have created an entire ecosystem right here, and there’s no want to depart the nice and cozy embrace of Dunbrody in any respect. However the flat, wild Wexford coast beckons.

Dunbrody is near Campile and the Passage East Ferry ferry throughout the estuary to Waterford. We determine to avoid wasting visiting New Ross and the Dunbrody Famine Ship for one more day and head south as a substitute, down the Hook peninsula.

Looming on the finish of the peninsula is the good Hook lighthouse, the world’s oldest working beacon. It is a chilly gray December morning, and the ocean is pounding the flagged shore. The wind is screaming, and it is simple to see how a ship rounding the purpose might come to a nasty finish. But the place, one of the vital well-liked vacationer points of interest within the nation, is packed, and there are about 30 courageous souls on our 11.30am tour.

We study that monks established a settlement right here within the fifth century and have been the primary to maintain a fireplace lit to warn seafarers off the rocks. The Normans adopted and constructed the present tower. With its 4m thick partitions, it seems to be prefer it might simply stand one other thousand years or so.

After a tasty lunch of seafood chowder at The Strand in Duncannon, we stroll alongside the extensive open seaside. There are litter sticks on the entrance to the seaside to encourage seaside combers to select up flotsam. We bag a couple of plastic bottles and yards of fishing twine and really feel mighty happy with ourselves.

Later, we stumble upon Kevin strolling benignly by the stalls on the Christmas honest. He leads me to see the smoking machine he has put in. The birds are browning fantastically, and look wealthy and succulent. If solely we might have purchased one in all these on that fateful chicken-less day 20 years in the past.

Getting there

Fran and household stayed in a collection at Dunbrody Nation Home Resort on a two-night getaway bundle with B&B and one dinner, priced at €395 per particular person.

One-day programs at Dunbrody Cookery College price €175; five-day grasp lessons, €750.

See dunbrodyhouse.com for more information, and for extra data on actions in Wexford go to visitwexford.ie.

This story initially appeared in The Sunday Unbiased.

Learn extra:

10 nice causes to go to Wexford

Sunday Indo Dwelling

 

Loading......
 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *