A nod to the east

Posted on: 17th January, 2017

Category: The Wine Buff

Contributor: Tony Eklof

Tony Eklof, originally from New England, has settled in Clonakilty after a career as a librarian at University College Dublin. His knowledge and passion for wine has been inspired by frequent visits to the wine growing regions of the continent, particularly Italy and France.

‘OH, East is East, and West is West, and never the twain shall meet’ –
The Ballad of East and West, Rudyard Kipling

West Cork is justifiably feted as the start (or finish) of the Wild Atlantic Way, but our neighbour East Cork also has its attractions and charm. Midleton has the popular Whiskey Distillery Visitor Centre with the largest pot-still in the world. Castlemartyr has Pat Short’s pub and the superb Resort Hotel set on 220 acres with three restaurants to choose from. Ballycotton is one of Ireland’s prettiest seaside resort-fishing villages. The jewel in the East Cork crown has to be Ballymaloe House in Shanagarry.

The restaurant was founded in 1964 and is famous worldwide now. The Lonely Planet has this to say about founder Myrtle Allen. ‘Myrtle is a living legend, acclaimed internationally for her near single-handed creation of fine Irish cooking.’

We stayed in Ballymaloe last month for a sapphire celebration and had the most wonderful time.

The room was gorgeous (no TV yes Bose radio!) grounds are stunning including a bird sanctuary. Staff were gracious and even arranged a personal tour of the amazing 5,000 bottle wine cellar for the Wine Buff. I held in my hands a Saint Emilion Grand Cru 1964, though chose a more modest and yet delicious Rioja for our fine dining that evening. Ballymaloe takes the wine side of dining seriously and have many wine awards to prove it.

They hold regular wine events during the year, but what impressed me the most was the fact that they had two qualified and helpful sommeliers on duty the night we dined and that the wine list is most exemplary.

Here is what I loved about the wine list. Although extensive it is easy to negotiate. While there are plenty of expensive gems, there are also many well-chosen and reasonably priced labels as well. Each entry has a helpful description including something important missing from many wine lists, namely the alcoholic content of the bottle to make it so much easier to choose between a lighter or stronger wine to match your meal.

All in all it was a terrific experience and it is only a hop and a skip away from us here in ‘the West’!

Wine Recommendation:

It is so hard to find quality California wines in our shops and that is why I was delighted to come across Meadowhawk Cellars Zinfandel 2014 in Aldi (Bandon and Skibbereen) at only €12. Looking closely at the label I note it is made by Cline, one of the best producers in California’s famous Lodi Valley, which explains the exceptional quality of this perfect winter-warmer. Think dark cherry and spicy vanilla notes.

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Visiting restrictions in place at Bantry General Hospital due to Flu Presentations

Strict visitor restrictions have been put in place with immediate effect at Bantry General Hospital due to the number of patients who have presented with flu like symptoms.

In the interest of patient care and in order to restrict the spread of the flu virus within the hospital, it is necessary with immediate effect to ban all visitors to Bantry General Hospital, with the exception of following: critically ill patients are restricted to one visitor per critically ill patient and confined to visiting times only, and attendance at the Medical Assessment Unit (MAU) and Local Injury Unit (LIU) should only take place if absolutely necessary, only one relative per patient attending these areas.

The elderly, children, pregnant women or young adults, those with chronic illnesses or vulnerable others are advised not to visit. Outpatient, Day care services and routine hospital admissions are not affected.

All infection control measures are in place and every effort is being made to manage and contain the spread of the flu virus.

People with flu like symptoms are advised to contact their GP by phone in the first instance and avoid presenting at the Emergency Department at Bantry General Hospital.

Bantry hospital staff are asking people to think about all their care and treatment options and keep ED services for the patients who need them most. Others with a less serious illness can be treated by their GP or out of hours GP service where their GP can refer them to an Assessment Unit the following day if required.
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8th January, 2018  ·  

West Cork People - The Best Free Read in West Cork shared Cope Foundation's Happy Christmas from Cope Foundation. ... See MoreSee Less

What makes Christmas special? Children and adults we support, our incredible staff, families and supporters - these are the people who make our organisation so special every single day, but especially at Christmas! Meet some of them here... Thank you to the wonderful team at AV3 Media who kindly produced this video for us as a Christmas gift! To make a Christmas donation today, go to www.cope-foundation.ie/donate. We believe that together we can do great things and with your support we can do so much more! Please SHARE our video so that more people can learn about the amazing things that happen at Cope Foundation! Evening Echo; Irish Examiner; The Southern Star; The Avondhu; Cork Independent; West Cork Times; West Cork People - The Best Free Read in West Cork; Bandon Opinion/The Opinion; Vale Star; East Cork Journal; Cork Chamber - Faces of Cork Business; Cork City FC; Cork Institute of Technology - CIT; University College Cork; Corks RedFM 104-106; The KC Show Corks 96 FM; Cork's 96FM; Cork's Best; C103 Cork; Cork Airport; Cork Opera House: The Everyman; Cork County Council; County Cork; Cork City Council; CorkLike; CCCahoots; Cork On Ice; Glow Cork; CIT Cork School of Music; RTÉ Today; Ciaran Bermingham - Actor; Rob & Marian Heffernan; John Spillane; Ger Wolfe; Eimear O'Brien PR; Jack O Rourke; Theo Dorgan; Mahon Point Shopping Centre; Blackpool Shopping Centre & Retail Park

18th December, 2017  ·  

This is the real spirit of Christmas at Caseys of Clonakilty. ... See MoreSee Less

Are you alone or do you know someone who will be alone this Christmas? If so, then we here at Casey’s would like to make your day that little bit easier. We are offering a full Christmas dinner on us! Christmas dinners can be collected Christmas Eve from 12:30pm - 8:30pm. Wishing everyone a very happy Christmas from everyone at Casey’s

15th December, 2017  ·  

RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta’s has just announced its Christmas schedule and it features several programmes of interest to listeners in West Cork.

On New Year’s Day at 12.08 pm we’ll hear highlights from the Éigse Dhiarmuidín Festival that took place in West Cork in early December, remembering musician and broadcaster Diarmuid Ó Súilleabháin. An Nollaig ar Oileán Chléire is an archive show presented by Mícheál Ó Sé on Wednesday 27 December at 5.30 pm about Christmas on Cape Clear and on Friday 29 December and 5 January at 7 pm, Peadar Ó Riada will bring us very special editions of his Cuireadh chun Ceoil programme from Múscraí. Keep an ear out!
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15th December, 2017  ·  

West Cork People - The Best Free Read in West Cork shared Garda Síochána - Cork, Kerry & Limerick - Southern Region's photo. ... See MoreSee Less

REMINDER: An Garda Siochana are hosting a Retail Crime Prevention Meeting, to be held at 7pm on Wednesday 29th November 2017. This meeting will be held in the Munster Arms Hotel in Bandon. This meeting is one of a series being held across the West Cork Garda Division, in association with Operation Thor, the Garda National Anti-Crime Strategy. The purpose of the meeting is to increase the cooperation between Gardai and the retail sector, ensuring that the current low levels of crime in the locality extends past the busy approaching Christmas season. The meeting will be addressed by the local Crime Prevention Officer, Sergeant Ian O’ Callaghan, who will discuss burglary prevention, shoplifting, fraud, and cybercrime. There will be a particular focus on cash handling and cash exposure of businesses in the run up to the Christmas shopping period. All aspects of commercial crime will be discussed, and we would strongly urge all businesses to make a special effort to attend on the evening.

28th November, 2017  ·  

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