A few years ago, I flew to Ireland. The plane landed, I boarded a bus and headed to a renovated castle hotel in Dublin named Clontarf Castle. I dropped my bags and set out on the first leg of the adventure. It was so green! This will be the first of a several part post on my Irish adventure.
The tour guide had us load up and set out on our first stop. No sense in sitting around the hotel, I was there to travel. I had not yet eaten breakfast, the sun was up and it was time to explore. First stop, Jameson Irish Whisky Factory. http://www.tours.jamesonwhiskey.com/age_verification.aspx
The tour explained the history of the Jameson family and factory, distilling process, and ended with a taste testing. Though I had not yet eaten, I figured that I did not travel all that way to just observe. I came to explore, live, and experience. I raised my hand and was selected as one of four to taste various Irish Whiskeys. First we learned about bourbon and were provided a very liberal amount of bourbon. Secondly, we learned about scotch. Again, a similar amount of scotch was placed before me. Then, they lined up four different Irish whiskeys. We learned about each and were given the same amount of each. At the end of the tasting, we were able to vote for the one we thought had the best qualities. I chose the one I thought was best and was provided with an even larger, sizeable amount of whiskey and an Official Irish Whiskey Taste Tester Diploma. Seven beverages in all and I was feeling pretty good.
I enjoyed the walk back to the bus with my diploma in hand. Thankfully, I did not need to drive. As I boarded the tour bus, I decided it would be a good idea to find some food. We headed back to Clontarf Castle Hotel. I peered out the window and appreciated the beautiful scenery. At the hotel, I de-boarded the bus and headed to the hotel eatery. It was the beginning of a fun adventure.