Eating is one of our (most) favorite parts of traveling the world, and Ireland itself one of our favorite places to visit. Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day and summer travel, we asked some expert Irish Tour Directors for their recommendations on the best (and most authentic) Irish cuisine. Read on for their list of food worth trying on your next trip to the Emerald Isle.
This comforting dish is often made without a recipe, as its traditional purpose is to use up common Irish staples like potatoes, pork sausage, bacon (called “rashers”) and onions. The meat is boiled to create a stock that is then used to braise the vegetables.
Pronounced “scon” locally, Irish scones are a world away from those typically available in North America. Have yours at teatime with homemade jam and clotted cream, a thick dairy product that resembles something between whipped cream and butter.
A 99 ice cream
Let’s get this out of the way first—no one really knows where the name comes from. A simple vanilla soft serve with a Flake candy stuck in the top, it may have gotten its name from the address of a popular ice cream shop, the former price of a cone (99p), the approximate measurement of the specially made Flake (99mm) or the final wave of Italian conscripts in World War 1 (the Boys of 99). Ask for it with “monkey blood” if you want a drizzle of berry syrup on top.
Fish and chips
England may be the most famous place for fish and chips, but Irish cities like seaside Galway honor this takeaway favorite very seriously. In Dublin, head to a chipper (fish and chips shop) and order a “one and one:” short for “one of this, one of that,” you’ll receive an order of fried fish with a side of fries.
This dish is quite literally can’t-miss—the Irish eat this hearty soda bread with most main meals. Try it with an authentic Irish grass-fed butter like Kerrygold.
Have you tried any of these foods during your Ireland travels? Tell us in the comments!