Take N 59 from Galway to Renvyle and after village just keep driving as far west as possible until you see those welcoming gates in front of you. You can't miss them - hopefully!
Renvyle House Hotel is one of the most successful hotels in Ireland. Read more about it and its history on the Hotels Section of my website. For far more years than I care to remember Renvyle has had a huge following. There is an old saying “you are only as good as your last effort” and that is very true but Renvyle succeeds because their last effort is always their best effort.
Renvyle is a place of fun and craic, music, golf, walking, the bar, but very importantly too it is famous for its good food! People will go anywhere once they know the food is enticing and it is undoubtedly that at Renvyle.
Renvyle House Chef Tim O’Sullivan has been been winning Awards all around him for years. If its not Best Chef in Connacht or Best Restaurant in Connacht it is that he has won the Moreau Chablis Fish Dish of the Year. Truth be told Tim O’Sullivan is one of the best chefs in Ireland. He can do with the denizens of the deep what no one else can! And talking of the denizens of the deep, the locally caught seafood is hard to beat.
The whole ambiance of Renvyle House Hotel, with its wonderful Arts & Crafts period features, is relaxation with open fires, very friendly and efficient service, complemented by the tickling on the ivories and again not just any ivories but on Count John McCormack’s Steinway concert piano. All overseen by the genial Chief Executive, Ronnie Counihan.
Tim has an amazingly light touch with food – he is just a natural. Starters are always tantalising. Fresh West Coast crabmeat is with spring onion, apples, wonton, orange and ginger mayo whilst prawn and vegetable spring roll comes with Chinese style egg noodles and a honey and coriander sauce. I love his salmon gravadlax with potato and dill salad, beetroot chutney and a chive cream sauce, and also his tagliatelle with shrimps, asparagus, sauteed spinach, shallots and herb cream. If you like something a little meatier he does a great warm beef salad with green beans, red onion, peppers, sesame seeds, baby corn, and a soya and ginger dressing, and also, pork, stout and leek sausage, with colcannon mash, red wine and onion gravy. He also does one of my favourite dishes of all time Tuna Nicoise with potato, capers, olives, green beans, tomato and tarragon vinaigrette.
Of course in a house like this there is always a soup course – sometimes its mushroom soup or cream of broccoli, or maybe leek and potato or carrot and coriander. Amazing how you think you can’t manage it all but somehow you do!
Mains generally include their excellent local Connemara lamb in some shape or form, maybe a rack with a herb and mustard crust or roast loin. Guinea fowl might be with stewed chickpeas, beetroot wedges, and Port sauce whilst succulent duckling comes with onion and apricot stuffing and a Morello cherry sauce. As I said previously, Renvyle is a fishophile’s delight. The scallops are amazing as is the turbot. Fillet of halibut is cooked Basque style.
If you have a sweet tooth you will be happy too. Traditional bread and butter pudding comes with vanilla icecream, whilst a Brandysnap basket is filled with icecreams and a choice of butterscotch or chocolate sauce. They do a great chocolate and hazelnut tart and strawberry sauce, and I also love their pear compote soaked in Sauternes, and also comes with a Champagne sorbet……. Now that is living.
A choice of tea, coffee or herbal teas, follows – with Petit Fours of course.
Don’t forget to stock up with Tim’s Salad Dressing, Good Morning Marmalade, Sweet Chiili Sauce and Renvyle Picnic Chutney – oh and his cookery book “At Home in Renvyle”. You couldn’t say a truer word.