In Timoleague, where stands the substantial ruins of a 13th century abbey, there is a restaurant called Dillon’s, run for the last couple of years by Julie and John Finn. This was an old bar and shop and that kind of atmosphere still remains as the bright spot is still a great place for social interaction, groups gathering for a chat and a coffee and even a game of bridge in the mornings.
That such a link to the past remains, says much for the friendliness and welcome you receive from the Finns. Julie looks after the front of house while John (originally from Mitchelstown) is the chef. Lovely people and lovely food.
Made my first call there last Friday, for lunch, and we got a terrific welcome and a terrific meal. Timoleague may be a relatively small place and Dillon’s a small restaurant, but the scope of the lunch menu (it is changed daily) is amazing, as you can see from the photo.
Took us a while to make the choice but knowing that the organic Ummera Smoke House was close by, we picked the House Platter with Smoked Salmon, Smoked Chicken and Smocked Duck, with homemade chutney, local Organic Salad and Brown Bread.
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After that, and the Tasting Menu the night before at the Cornstore, we weren’t too sure about dessert but were persuaded when we saw the tart on the counter, the Pear, Almond, Blueberry and Raspberry tart that is.
Had something like this in Cafe Madeleine’s in St Gilles Croix de Vie in the Vendee in the early 80s. The Dillon’s effort was probably better and that too will find a special place in my food memory (which I must admit goes back a surprisingly long way!). “I’d drive down from the city just for this alone,” enthused CL.
Lots of people drive down from the city (just about an hour) in any case and Sunday lunch in Dillon’s is very popular. Opening hours are a little restricted at this time of year so check the latest on the website before you go.
Afterwards you may work it off by taking the walk along the route of the old railway to Courtmacsherry and back (about ten kilometres return). Speaking of walks, who walked in as we finished the coffee only Anthony Creswell, the owner of the aforementioned Ummera Smoke House but that is another story, another post.