Ireland's Hidden Gemsby Susan Byron
- Green trails and massive variety characterize Ireland's walking vacations
- Lough Bawn House a hidden gem beautifully catered in mystical Westmeath
- King John's Castle, Limerick City, revamped and ready for action
- Irish jewelry designer creates a contemporary Ring of Kerry
- Barron's Bakery, a family-run, Waterford staple baking the best bread in Ireland for over 125 years
I have to say I prefer the Old Jameson's Distillery as a visitor attraction to the Guinness Storehouse for the simple reason that the tour here is guided whereas in Guinness’s you are left to your own devices. Which can be very pleasant, especially above in the Gravity Bar with a view of the city and a pint in your hand, but for me I want something more?
I like to leave a place a little bit wiser and in Jameson's case (a little bit tipsy) having learned something. Properly guided tours will do that for you and at Jameson's it’s very well done, just the right length of time and information to hold your attention, finishing up with a genuinely, convivial tasting session in the Jameson's Bar.
Perhaps, when you understand how something is made you appreciate it more? It’s quite amazing how three simple ingredients, barley, water and yeast can be turned into ‘uisce beatha’ or the water of life? And interesting too, how each of the processes, whether it was the malting of the barley, the marrying of the whiskey in casks or the vatting into bottles, shaped the lives and social history of such a small part of Dublin. Surely they could never have imagined Jameson's whiskey becoming the global phenomenon it is today.
Taras Palace is modeled on the famous Titania’s Palace which was sadly lost to Ireland in the 1970s and is now on display at Egeskov Castle in Denmark. The original having been built in Dublin in the early 1900s for Sir Neville Wilkinson’s daughter Gwendolen, who like all other little girls believed in fairies.
A wealthy man, he commissioned artists and craftsmen from all over the world to recreate this view of their privileged world in precise and meticulous miniature. With 18 rooms and over 3000 individual pieces it took some 18 years to complete and such a triumph that it went on public display for childrens’ charities, a role Tara’s Palace continues today.