Elm Tree, The
Derek & Lorraine Walshe
Johnstown, Glounthaune, Cork,
Telephone: +353 (021) 4351024
Whizzing along the motorways around the country it is very easy to miss some really great places to eat if you are not a local. In this case I am talking of the N25 Waterford to ...
How to get there
Just 10 minutes from Cork City on the old road just past Glounthaune Village.
Good to know
9am - 11.30 pm
A La Carte:
Mains €14.95 - €29.95
Number of Covers:
Yes - Free
About The Restaurant
Whizzing along the motorways around the country it is very easy to miss some really great places to eat if you are not a local. In this case I am talking of the N25 Waterford to Cork Road which in the old days went along through Glounthaune. Remarking on this to our friend Michael, who lives not far away and with whom we were staying, he quickly said to me, “have you been to The Elm Tree at Glounthaune – it has been totally rebuilt – I often go there for lunch – and it is terrific.” “Say no more”, I said, lets head off there now. He was right!
Gastropubs are more and more popular but they have to be right – and The Elm Tree is right. Derek and Lorraine Walshe have created an urban stylish Gastropub doing the best of food in the best of surroundings. This is a serious operation for food is available all day right through to nighttime.
They kick off at The Elm Tree at 9 a.m. with their Morning Coffee menu which is also very popular with the ladies for a catch up with friends after they have pounded the roads to keep fit! The morning menu includes warm Belgian waffles served with whipped cream and homemade red berry compote; freshly baked warm scones with preserves and freshly whipped cream; lovely croissants and Danish pastries, or if you like your egg in the morning, and I do, they do a great Classic Bacon Bagel filled with crispy bacon, a healthy poached egg and rocket leaves. Lunch kicks off at noon and runs until 3 pm. They have an excellent carvery which varies each day – baked ham, pork, lamb, beef, and lovely fresh vegetables. They also do lighter fare such as a toasted tuna melt, Cajun chicken Bagel, BBQ vegetable ciabatta, and salads include Tuna Nicoise, Chicken Caesar.
We entered through tree shaded The Courtyard Beer Garden which has a retractable apex roof so it is always going to be sunny at The Elm Tree. It is the perfect venue for a summer barbecue and relaxing on balmy summer evenings which families were doing in abundance on our visit. It is a very attractive area with high planters, little red tea lamps, whispering leaves and rattan armchairs. You could while a way many an afternoon here with friends after lunch.
We went into a smart cocktail bar area where you can pop up at the bar, have a drink and a bite to eat or sit down on the banquette at a lower table. This leads through to a very large sleek lounge restaurant area where we made ourselves comfortable at a spacious table. The dinner menu is available from 3.30 pm until 9.30 pm which is a great idea and gives great flexibility. Brendan kicked off with delicious warm goats cheese on rustic bread which came with a green salad and a tangy mango and ginger chutney. Mike with a New England style Ballycotton Bay clam chowder which he absolutely loved. I had a brace of smashing salmon and crab cakes which had an Asian slant and came with mixed leaves and a sweet chilli dip.
There was a large selection of mains which included 8oz and 10oz sirloin steaks with a choice of garlic butter or mixed peppercorn and Brandy sauce served with all the fixin's onions, mushrooms, grilled tomato, a choice of potatoes or fries. Thai Red Chicken Curry is served with lemongrass and ginger scented rice, whilst pan seared salmon comes with steamed seasonal vegetables and a saffron broth. Grilled fillet of chicken is on a bed of baby gem lettuce with garlic croutons, Parmesan shavings and Caesar dressing, whilst Caribbean BBQ style chicken is marinated fillet of chicken served with a pineapple salsa and homemade gingerbread. Brendan went with the baked fillet of cod which was wrapped in Parma ham, perfectly cooked, and served on a bed of ratatouille and a pesto drizzle. Mike went with pork in the shape of a panfried pork cutlet with a little tranch of roasted pork belly tweaked with a pear compote which was absolutely delicious. I dithered between Fish ‘n Chips and the Honey Roast Half Duckling – the duck won out and it was absolutely delicious, crispy and succulent, with an apricot stuffing and an orange sauce. All mains come with a choice of veg and potatoes, or salads and fries.
Leave room for puds! Mike had lovely nostalgic profiteroles with chocolate sauce whilst Brendan went with warm homemade apple pie with a ‘Sauce Anglaise’ or custard as you might know it as. I was hard aground but did fancy the rich chocolate mousse cake or the meringue nest filled with strawberries.
Children are very well catered for at The Elm Tree with their own menu for Under 12’s which will appeal as it includes tomato and cheese pizza, Southern Fried chicken goujons, fish fingers, Pigs in a Blanket – pork sausages with mash potato and beans – and of course lots of treats such as mini profiteroles, kids icecream with a novelty cup, and icecream with sprinkles – provided they have eaten their main courses naturally.
The Elm Tree is very much part of the community and is attracting people from far and wide. It is well worth slipping off the N25 if you are feeling peckish en route.
Worth a detour as they say.
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