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- Ballymaloe House in East Cork has long had a tremendous reputation for its organic farm to table restaurant as well as for its nearby cookery school, with many in the know saying it is the place where Irish cuisine entered the modern world. Add to that its excellent guesthouse accommodation and it really is a must visit place for those with an interest in Irish food. Unsurprisingly it is very popular though, with both Irish and international guests, and so bookings should be made well in advance. THE ACCOMMODATION: They offer a range of elegant double/twin rooms at the farmhouse and in the courtyard’s converted barn. Check your options on the booking page here. The accommodation is surrounded by beautifully tended gardens which have tennis courts and a small swimming pool, and beyond them is the 300 acre organic farm from where much of the ingredients of their famous food come from. Guest are free to wander around the farm which has marked trails and guided tours are also available. There are benches at various points too and lots of places to relax and soak in the peace and tranquility. There is an old style drawing room/guest lounge at the farmhouse and of course there is the restaurant. The food, as mentioned, is the major draw at Ballymaloe. There is an extra charge for breakfast it must be noted but it will be one of the best breakfasts you may ever find in Ireland, featuring a buffet of fresh local ingredients along with a choice of hot freshly cooked options: The traditional Irish fry up is of course there but also things like crepes, omelettes and fresh fish dishes. There are set lunch menus and very indulgent five course evening meals on offer too and you can enjoy some great wines. Their resident sommeliers are considered some of Ireland’s best and they can also give you a tour of the Ballymaloe wine cellars. THE LOCATION: Less than a half an hours drive from Cork City Ballymaloe is tucked away in the deeply rural hinterlands of East Cork, an area particularly noted for its agriculture. The sea, and the lovely little READ MORE