Review on Ballymaloe House

When it opened in 1964, the Allen family's groundbreaking enterprise was a trailblazer for the Irish cookery renaissance. Co-founder and doyenne Myrtle Allen still keeps an eye on proceedings, although the baton has been passed to the younger generation in recent years. The ivy-clad Georgian house remains an absolute joy and it now stands in the midst of a working organic farm that provides much of the produce for the kitchen.

Domestic enterprise and a dedication to home-grown and local produce are still at the heart of Ballymaloe's activities and its shows right across the board. Breakfast is a leisurely delight, lunch brings light dishes and the day reaches a climax with lavish five-course dinners followed by traditional music in front of the fire. You might begin with celeriac and roast hazelnut soup before a selection of Ballymaloe pts and terrines. Ireland rules when it comes to main courses of roast lamb with redcurrant jelly and glazed carrots or grilled Ballycotton cod with wild garlic butter and tomato fondue; Irish cheeses and a legendary pudding trolley make a fitting finale.

Sunday lunch is a memorable hot buffet, and there's a cold spread in the evening. The wine list continues to evolve and the Allens are unusual in that they buy fine vintages deliberately to lay down; Bordeaux and Burgundy are the strengths, although Spain and Italy now provide serious competition.

Ballymaloe is equally famous for its Cookery School, which is ably run by Darina Allen (one of Myrtle's daughters-in-law), and the whole enterprise now incorporates everything from tours to music weekends.

Ballymaloe House is also featured in: Good Food Guide

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Jason Fahey and Gillian Hegarty

Restaurant Opening Times

Breakfast: 8.00 10.30am
Lunch: 1.00 2.00pm
Dinner: 7.00 9.30pm

Accepted credit cards

Visa, Master Card, American Express

Online Booking Availability for Ballymaloe House

Facilities at Ballymaloe House

  • Private dining room
  • Private parties
  • Vegetarian menu
  • 110 covers
  • Family Friendly


Accomodation is available, (33 rooms)


Private parking is possible at a location nearby


Ballymaloe House
County Cork

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Ballymaloe House Christmas Menu

Restaurant menus often vary from day to day, so the above should be treated as examples of what to expect in terms of cuisine and price.

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Virtual Tour of Ballymaloe House