Weekender... Kerry Bread
An Irish holiday is nothing without bread. The bread is gorgeous at Maison Gourmet bakery in Kenmare, but is only part of the story. Check out the small but perfectly formed coconut macaroons for only 50c, or the knock-out Jesuite - a flaky pastry base topped with frangipane cream, meringue and flaked almonds. We sit in the back garden of the cafe while the French-speaking baker eats his lunch and we compliment him clumsily.
I try to resist croissants in The Park Hotel. I vow to resist morning pastries at the start of every holiday. I fail here in the face of their buttery gleam. I have a pain au chocolat, too. They're only small.
Pizza is the bread of choice in Cahersiveen, which has grown two new places to eat in the months since I was there last. The old Church of Ireland is now The Oratory, pictured above, and every evening, serves pizzas that an Italian would salivate over. Find one on the social-media feed of any Kerry holidaymaker this summer.
Across the road at Eva's, home-baked brown bread buckles under heaps of Quinlan's crab. This bar, under new ownership and now painted a pretty pale blue, has light and crispy home-made chicken goujons that the kids will crave back home.
Panini is rapidly heading for passe - too bready, it seems - but it's worth checking out at the Beara Coast Hotel in Castletownbere. Our open salmon sandwich is swapped for a panini of barbecued beef melt with jalepenos. There's also a fried Monte
Cristo sandwich, which is an American twist on the croque-monsieur, but that's for another time. When I've had a break from my bread holiday.