Lisa found this cute little town called Donore very close to the Newgrange world heritage site. In that town, she found a delightful Airbnb called the Old Dispensary. Delightful is an understatement. Donore is simple, small and quiet. This is exactly what I needed. Unfortunately, I'll only be here for one evening before I do a quick two-day trip home for some board meetings.
In the mean time, I will reflect on driving nearly 1600km in our van over the last 5 days, crossing all of Ireland twice. I will marvel that in this tiny little village, there is a brasserie next door that has superbly delicious food.
I will lose myself in a goat cheese salad that is simply divine and be disappointed that beef in Ireland isn't what I'd call steak-quality. First the cheese. If there's one thing the Irish do well (other than drink), it's dairy. Milk, butter and cheese (specifically simple sheep and goat cheeses). I have been and continue to be a huge fan of goat cheese and I've found that the goat cheese here in Ireland is a cortisol vortex tunnel. Creamy bite after creamy bite delivers one slowly and patiently to ecstasy. If you aren't a fan of goat cheese, I'll only say simply that your palate is busted; get it fixed. Some of life's greatest joys are warm goat cheese with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a fried goat cheese croquette.
Now, back to the delicate subject of the beef here. This might not make more Irish friends, but I call 'em like I see 'em. The beef here in Ireland is certainly of excellent quality, but the taste of the meat itself suits itself poorly for light seasoning and direct flame. There is a dull flavor to the meat here and it lacks that sharper taste of minerals that beef from America provides.
I know my meat and I'll take a U.S.A. cattle over this. Or to put it differently, I shall tilt more directly at Irish specialties: stew, fried foods and a variety of delicious seafood dishes including fisherman's pie.