7 of the best restaurants to try in the county of Cork

By Ciara McDonnell

Recent years have seen a veritable gastronomic explosion in the county of Cork with even more new arrivals and here are some of the best places to dine.

Izz Cafe
Izz Cafe

Enjoy delectable Palestinian cuisine at Izz Cafe

Producing unbelievably delicious Palestinian food, Izz Cafe on Cork’s George’s Quay in the city of Cork is helping to revolutionise the city’s culinary scene. Specialising in Maneesh – flatbreads topped with all kinds of yumminess, a visit to Izz is essential.


Achingly cool, Cask wine bar in the city of Cork specialises in small plates and sharing boards but acknowledges some customer’s needs for a large meal with burgers and short ribs and a number of other crowd-pleasers. Their Spanish-style pinchos are the perfect accompaniment to a glass of their excellent wine, and don’t miss out on the dirty spuds; a glorious concoction of home-made chips, mozzarella, thyme and bacon bits.

Ballymaloe House
Ballymaloe House, County Cork

Dine in luxurious surroundings at Ballymaloe House in East Cork

East Cork is full of foodie treasures waiting to be discovered, but to start your journey properly, it is essential to pay homage at Ballymaloe House; Ireland’s most distinguished and loved country houses. Founded by Myrtle Allen, the undisputed mother of Irish cooking, a trip here is a trip back in time – be sure to stay for the legendary Ballymaloe Sweet cart.

Aherne’s Seafood Restaurant

Aherne’s Seafood Restaurant in Youghal is in its third generation and has the service to prove it. You’ll be looked after exceptionally well and get to eat some of the best food of the region, thanks to owner and head chef David Aherne.

Sage Restaurant
Sage Restaurant, Midleton

Enjoy a true, locally-sourced menu at Sage

Sage Restaurant in Midleton operates a ‘12 mile’ ethos; all of the produce used on this ever-changing menu is sourced from within a 12-mile radius of the restaurant. Using the best that the area has to offer, chef patron Kevin Aherne has created a restaurant that speaks for itself – book early to ensure a table here!

The Presidents’ Restaurant

Sometimes, we all need to experience some good, old-fashioned hospitality, where white linen tablecloths are a prerequisite and wonderful food is guaranteed. Consider an evening of old-school luxury by heading north to Mallow and booking a table at The Presidents’ Restaurant at Longueville House. The menu at this gorgeous country house is based on farm-to-fork dining and all produce where possible, is sourced on the estate grounds, and its working farm.

The restaurant serves a traditional Sunday luncheon every weekend, starting with buffet appetisers, followed by a Sunday roast, fresh fish or vegetarian options sourced from the restaurant gardens. You’ll finish (if you can fit any more in) with a selection from the dessert and cheese table, before taking a stroll around the extensive grounds of this gorgeous estate, congratulating yourself on a Sunday well spent.


Breakfast, brunch and lunch are taken care of in spades at Seasalt in Cobh. With a gorgeous array of sandwiches on offer, this cafe and deli is situated right across from the Titanic Experience. If you are getting set for a day of exploring, they’ll even pack up a picnic in compostable packaging for you to enjoy during the day.

So if you’re looking for a memorable dining experience, the county of Cork is certainly the right place!

Read more about County Cork

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Image credits: ©Ballymaloe House; Chad Montano/Davide Cantelli/Unsplash; Izz Cafe; SAGE Restaurant; Seasalt Cobh

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