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Food

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You won't go hungry or thirsty in Ireland, though you may well work up an appetite for its cuisine as well as a taste for its unique passion when it comes to honest to goodness food!Ireland's new cosmopolitan and multi-cultural society is responsible for the diverse and mouth-watering dishes now available in a multitude of restaurants that span both rural and urban areas.All tastes and pockets are catered for, from the must-have take-away to a more expensive culinary experience.  Ireland's climate and location also ensures fresh, quality ingredients and world-class meat and sea-food - vital for unforgettable food.

Cuisine from all nationalities are reflected in Ireland and restaurants pride themselves on satisfying special religious or dietary requirements.

Whether eating out or in, food is still a premier way of socialising in this country and many friendships have been forged over a coffee and a slice of cake!

Good restaurant guides are available online at Menu PagesTaste of Ireland or Find a Restaurant.

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In recent years, there has been a huge revival of the traditional favourites with a renewed interest and appreciation in everything Irish. 

Although cooking has evolved, most people still follow the tried and tested - and often family - recipes such as Irish stew, bacon and cabbage and coddle.

Money is always tight for students and the good news is that you can eat healthy, fresh and non-processed food at very affordable prices. However, there are also fabulously devilish deserts and dishes to opt for on those 'special occasions.'

Opening hours vary for coffee shops and restaurants but many service stations now offer an array of hot food from as early as 7am until late.  Snack food shops also open until 11pm or midnight.

National specialities

  • Dublin Bay prawns.
  • Oysters (served with Guinness and wholemeal bread).
  • Irish stew (traditionally made with mutton or old sheep, now mostly made with lamb or juicy beef, this dish is usually served with potatoes, stock, onions, carrots and garlic).
  • Colcannon (a mixture of potatoes and cabbage cooked together).
  • Bacon & Cabbage.
  • Soda bread.
  • Irish Breakfast, a fried or grilled meal generally comprising bacon, egg, sausage, black and white pudding and fried tomatoes. 
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The two most internationally distinctive alcoholic products are whiskey and stout. Irish whiskey has a uniquely characteristic flavour and is matured in a wooden barrel for a minimum of seven years. Certainly as popular as whiskey is stout which is bottled or served from the tap.