"The tour was really great. I was very surprised about the beautiful country and even more the great beers." Fiona, The Netherlands.
5 Day Tour
Depart Dublin at 9am to visit O’Hara’s family owned brewery and one of the longest established independent micro-breweries in the country. Founded in 1996 and located in Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow, the heart of Ireland’s historical hop and malt growing ‘Barrow Valley’ region where the water supply is particularly suited to brewing stouts and ales which O’ Hara’s do extremely well. O’Hara’s export extensively and one of their best known and acclaimed beers is Leann Follain, a full bodied Irish Extra Stout.
After lunch, we head South to Co Waterford and enjoy a scenic drive along the Copper Coast to the seaside town of Dungarvan. Tour the Dungarvan Brewery which specialises in producing a range of bottle and cask conditioned beers. This means that a natural carbonation process occurs within the bottle which eliminates the need for the addition of further gasses to the beers.
Breweries : O'Hara's Carlow Brewing Company
Producers of: O’ Hara’s Irish Pale Ale, O’ Hara’s Irish Red, O’ Hara’s Irish Stout, Curim Gold (Wheat Beer), Leann Follain (Extra Stout)
Breweries: Dungarvan Brewing Company
Producers of: Black Rock Irish Stout, Copper Coast Red Ale, Helvick Gold Ale
Visit the beautiful heritage town of Lismore in Co Waterford.
Take the scenic route over the Knockmealdown Mountains visiting the picturesque Bay Lough Corrie Lake at The Vee.
Arrive at Eight Degrees Brewery in Mitchelstown, Co Cork which takes its name from the 8th degree of longitude that passes through it. As guests will find out 8 degrees is also a nice temperature to serve Howling Gale Ale at.
After lunch it’s onto Ireland's second city of Cork. Cork is full of history and has a laidback charm. Following free-time to explore the “rebel city” there is a tour of the Franciscan Well, once a monastery and now home to an award winning brewpub. The Franciscan Well promises to be a highlight of the tour and you will certainly have both hunger and thirst fully sated overnight in Cork with an array of pubs serving quality micro brewed beer.
Producers of: Howling Gale Ale (Pale ale), Sunburnt Irish Red, Knockmealdown Porter, Barefoot Bohemian Pilsner
Breweries: Franciscan Well Brewery, Cork City
Producers of: Blarney Blonde, Rebel Red Ale, Shandon Stout, Friar Weisse (Wheat beer)
Depart Cork and head west into the wilds of Kerry. First stop is Inch Beach for a swim in the Atlantic (not for the faint hearted) before lunching at The South Pole Inn, Annascaul. This remarkable pub was established by Annascaul’s most famous son, Antarctic explorer Tom Crean. Tom Crean was a mighty yet modest man who was the backbone of several of Scott and Shackletons Antarctic expeditions.
15 miles further west and we arrive at the beautiful town of Dingle. Dingle is a thriving fishing village with a warren of narrow streets filled with great pubs and restaurants. Located in the old creamery is the Dingle Brewing Company where they make a very special lager named after Tom Crean himself.
Tucked away on the Slea peninsula is Tig Bhric, home to the West Kerry Brewery. Tig Bhric is Europe's smallest and most Westerly brewery, but it's cask conditioned ale and stout is big on flavour. Paul and Adrienne brew for their charming pub and also hand bottle on site for sale to the local Dingle restaurants and off-licenses.
Overnight in Dingle where there will be no shortage of good quality food, craic and traditional Irish music.
Breweries: Dingle Brewing Company
Producers of: Tom Crean's Lager
Breweries: Tig Bhric West Kerry Brewery, Slea Head Peninsula, County Kerry
Producers of: Cul Dorcha (Dark Corner) Dark Ale, Beal Ban (White Mouth), Pale ale and Carraig Dubh(Black Rock), porter. All are brewed for cask.
After a leisurely morning in Dingle, we will take the breathtaking Conor Pass to reach Tralee, Co Kerry.
Ferry across to Co Clare to visit the Cliffs of Moher, one of Ireland's most visited areas of scenic beauty.
We travel to Lisdoonvarna to visit an impressive duo of neighbouring businesses. Firstly, we will visit the Burren Smokehouse run by Birgitta Curtin for a tour and tastings of a variety of salmon smoked on site before proceeding to her husband Peter's Roadside Tavern & Brewery. This terrific pub has been run by several generations of the same family since 1893 and Peter recently started brewing their own range of beer. The Roadside Tavern is also home to the very active Burren Tolkien Society and how that came to be is an amazing story in itself. Peter, owner & brewer will fill Tolkien fans in on this one over a pint in his very cosy pub. We will overnight in Lisdoonvarna which also happens to be the match making capital of Ireland and a great place to catch some live, traditional music.
Breweries: Roadside Tavern, Lisdoonvarna, Co Clare
Producers of: Burren Red Ale, Burren Gold, Burren Stout
We will travel through Co Clare to Bunratty Castle to visit to the 15th century castle and the 19th century Folk Park where you can experience the villlage street which recreates our Medieval past.
We will enjoy a buffet lunch at White Gypsy brewery in Co Tipperary combining local meats and cheeses with the beers. Cuilan the owner & brewer at White Gypsy is one of the early pioneers of Irish brewing and has built up a great reputation for his quality beers recently bottling for the restaurant trade. He will talk us through his unique style over lunch and a tour of his state of the art brewery. White Gypsy pride themselves on sourcing as many ingredients as possible for their delicious beers locally, even testing the Irish climate by trying to grow their own hops. It is one of Ireland's most progressive breweries and are at the forefront of the country’s brewing renaissance.
Breweries: White Gypsy, Templemore, County Tipperary
Producers of: Red Oak Ale, Belgian Blond Ale, Emerald Ale
Bottled: American Pale Ale, German Doppelbock, Russian Imperial Stout, Belgian Dubbel.