The top 10 reasons to city-break in Cork this autumn

With its warrens of narrow streets, vibrant spirit and warm welcome, Cork is the perfect city break destination for when the nights are drawing in.

Here are 10 reasons why you should be in this historic city as the seasons switch.

1. Food worth travelling for

Thanks to an abundance of high-quality local producers and a profusion of creative and passionate chefs, Cork has a deserving reputation as Ireland’s food capital. Whether you’re browsing the overflowing stalls at the famous and centuries-old English Market or sampling dishes at the city’s amazing restaurants, pubs and cafés, great food will always be on the menu.

2. And all that jazz

Having hosted jazz greats such as Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Peterson and Mel Tormé throughout its long history, the lively Cork Jazz Festival pulls in thousands of music fans every October. Sponsored by Guinness and with events taking place in pubs and venues all across Cork, the city will be buzzing once again this autumn with groundbreaking music, fun and charm from 27 – 30 October.

3. Titanic tales

One of the most popular day trips from Cork city is to the town of Cobh, a beautiful Irish seaport with a bittersweet history. Once the main point of emigration from Ireland, Cobh was the Titanic’s last port of call before she sailed onwards to her fate. The story is told magnificently at the Titanic Experience located in the old White Star Line offices on the seafront.

4. Epic Cork City Gaol

Cork City Gaol ( museum), Cork, Ireland

Experience life in the nineteenth and early twentieth century at Cork City Gaol, a museum that offers a unique insight into the city’s history, both inside and outside of the prison walls. Take a trip back in time and wander through the wings of the gaol, accompanied by the shuffling feet of inmates and the jingle of the warders’ keys.

5. City sight-seeing

You can easily explore Cork on foot, but it’s worth checking out one of the excellent, locally led tours to find out what really makes Ireland’s second city tick. Cork City Walks are full of history and folklore, or you can jump on an open-top double-decker bus and see the sights with Cork City Tours.

6. Art galleries galore

Crawford Art Gallery

As a former European Capital of Culture, Cork is packed with museums, galleries, theatres, music and dance academies and more. You will find everything from opera to street art within the thriving art and culture scene, with the Crawford Art Gallery, the Glucksman Gallery and the Lavit Gallery among the best visual art spaces to make a beeline for.

Cobh, County Cork

 

7. The Wild Atlantic Way

One of the best sections of the 2,500km Wild Atlantic Way route starts – or ends – in Kinsale, just half an hour away from Cork city. This makes the city the perfect jumping-off point for exploring the breath-taking scenery and remote peninsulas of West Cork.

8. Ring the Shandon Bells

A visit to Cork isn’t complete without climbing to the belfry of the eighteenth-century St Anne’s Church to ring the world-famous Shandon Bells. There are 135 steps to reach the viewing balcony, but the reward is fantastic panoramic views over the city and surrounding countryside.

Old_Cork_Waterworks_Experience_Entrance

9. Fitzgerald Park

For a gorgeous feel of autumn foliage in Cork, head down to Fitzgerald Park on the banks of the River Lee. Home to Cork Public Museum, the Sky Garden, a series of sculptures, cafés, walks and more, the park offers a quiet retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city.

10. You can kiss the Blarney Stone

The world-famous Blarney Castle, home of the iconic Blarney Stone, is one of Ireland’s top attractions and is located just ten minutes from Cork city. Legend has it that kissing the Blarney Stone will give you the ‘gift of the gab’ – as in great eloquence or persuasiveness. A great reason to go!
 
www.ireland.com

An abundance of olives: Olivo Amigo Olive Oil from Jaen, Spain

Gathering the olives harvested on a small, multi-generation, organic-certified farm in Jaen Spain, Olivo Amigo is a premium extra virgin sustainably grown olive oil bottled in eco-friendly and attractive white bottles with stainless steel spouts for easy pouring. The olive oil currently available comes from olives pressed after being gathered during last year’s fall harvest in October.

Olivo Amigo comes in two flavors.

Joy, with its undertone of almond and peppery aftertaste that contrasts with citrus zest taste. Made with Picual olives, It’s an intense fruity green and has aromas of tomato and olive leaves with delicate touches of almond and artichoke. Well-balanced, Joy has traces of a medium-low bitterness and a touch of spice.

PERFECT FOR:

Salads, dressings, cheese, tomatoes, crudites, on top of pastas, drizzled on soups or veggie creams, bread, figs and datiles.

Vitality, with its nuances of fig and apple, is a complex well-balanced extra virgin olive oil with a medium-high green fruitiness. Made with Nevadillo olives, it has aromas of green grass and tomato and to taste has a very mild bitterness and a pleasant medium spice level. A complex, well-balanced oil,

PERFECT FOR:

Sauces, dips, warm stews, roasted veggies, meat, fish, potatoes, frying eggs, baking pastries or on top of ice cream.

Jaen ANDALUCIA SPAIN

Jaen Province: An Abundance of Olives

Located in north-eastern Andalucia, the name Jaen is Moorish for  geen or jayyan meaning stopping post on a caravan route. With over 40 million olive trees (the most of any province in Spain), the economy of Jaen is based upon olive oil. The region is known for its wonderful olive oil , gastronomy, Renaissance architecture, mountains, and  Castillo Santa Catalina, a Moorish fortress dating back to the 10th century.

The following recipes are courtesy of Olivo Amigo.

Olive Oil Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/3 cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated orange zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier liqueur

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Apply olive oil or butter spray to a 9- inch cake pan that is 2 inches deep and line the bottom with parchment paper. If your cake pan is less than 2 inches deep, divide batter between two pans and check on them after 30 minutes.

Gather two bowls. First, mix your flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, and baking powder with a whisk.

In another bowl, mix the olive oil, eggs, orange zest, orange juice, and Grand Marnier. Lastly, add dry ingredients and whisk them all together.

Pour the batter into the preheated pan and bake it for an hour until the top is golden and the cake tester comes out clean. Move the cake to a rack and let it rest for thirty minutes.

Run a knife around the pan and invert the cake onto the rack. Let it cool for two hours.

Vegetable Pasta Salad

  • 8 ounces dried orzo pasta
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into florets, about 2 cups
  • 1 1/2 cup cubed butternut squash
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup Olivo Amigo Vitality olive oil
  • Juice of 1 lemon, about 1/4 cup
  • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, divided


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta. Cook according to package directions. Drain and set aside.

Preheat oven to 400F. On a large baking sheet, add butternut squash cubes and cauliflower florets. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Bake for 25 minutes until crispy and charred. Remove from oven, set aside and allow to cool.

In a large bowl, add cooked orzo, roasted butternut squash, roasted cauliflower, raisins, parsley, Olivo Amigo Vitality olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Toss to combine.