Cafe la Coco. Kilkenny

I thought I would change my routine and try  Cafe la Coco , Patrick Street, Kilkenny. What a mistake. I ordered a cappuccino and patiently waited, they were busy. I enquired about the availability of wifi. None.This in a way was quite refreshing but slightly annoying.

Coffee arrives, looks good. Try it. Stone cold. Returned it politely. Coffee came back one minute later. Enquired if they had made a fresh one. No. Goodbye. Went to Willoughby’s across the road. Hot coffee. Good service. Comfortable. Moral: stick with what you know.


Butler House. Dower House of Kilkenny Castle.

How many times have you been somewhere that is familiar but you see something unusual. This morning I took a wander up to Kilkenny Castle courtyard to see what was new and saw a small opening into a dreamy garden and venturing a little further came across an absolute gem of a house, Butler House. On further inspection I discovered it is in fact a guest house with a splendid decor. The mouldings on the ceilings and walls are original Adams. Not many guest houses can boast that. It exudes a friendly family atmosphere reflecting its historical past.

Butler House was  built in 1786 by Sir Walter Butler 16th Earl of Ormonde for his wife Lady Eleanor so that she would have somewhere comfortable to live after his death. How thoughtful. It was once used as a soup kitchen during the cholera outbreak. It was also was used by students studying the arts and is now under the umbrella of Kilkenny Civil Trust.

On Monday 17th it reopens after an extensive renovation project and it will be opening a tea rooms and restaurant. To stay the rooms range from €99 to €250 for the Presidential suite.

So if you are visiting the castle seek out this little gem and enjoy the view.

Kilkenny Farmers Market

Now the Summer is underway so is Kilkenny Farmers Market , however half the stands have very little to do with farming but lend themselves to a foody feel.

These are small businesses which offer a unique choice such as the olive seller. Fresh locally grown strawberries and indulgent hand made chocolates are an example of the diverse produce on offer.


The market is held on Thursdays ( 10.00 – 2.30 pm ) on The Parade outside the Castle. Well worth a visit to support the local food producers.


Agos’s Technicolor Bicycle

Agos Arias & Technicolour Bike.

Travelling is all about surprises and today I passed by Kilkenny Cycling Tours and saw Agos putting the finishing touches to their display bike. Her smile was as colourful as the bike. Try them out.

If you have similar pictures send them in , would love to see what your riding for the summer. I will write a free blog for the winner.

Secret Books

It’s an exciting day when you come across a new idea and today was no exception. I went to collect my paper at The Book Centre in Kilkenny and they had a basket of wrapped brown paper books with labels giving you a hint on the plot of the book. This creates intrigue and mystery, after all isn’t that why you buy a book.

This way you cannot JUDGE A BOOK BY IT’S COVER. You buy it because the story appeals to you. Neat eh?

Drink & Draw in Kilkenny


I was asked to try Drink & Draw last night and wondered what I was in for. What a revelation. My new friend Virginia enlightened me to that this is a social pass-time all over the world. I had no idea. It is popular all over Ireland and includes similar activities such as Drink &a Knit , even Drink and Bitch, that sounds great.

Kilkenny is a small group but would like to expand ( Find them on Facebook ). I arrived and in a small corner of Ryan’s Pub , Friary Street , Kilkenny to find the group tackling their artwork. I was blown away by Kevin’s pencil work , such detail. An image like this could take six weeks. Virginia was working on a portrait of an elf in pastel, really good.


Patrick using his own ink

The most fascinating medium was practised by Patrick who made his own ink from oak balls which are formed as a result of wasps laying eggs on the tree and the tree reacts by surrounding the eggs with toxins and forming a ball.  The balls are then crushed  and soaked in rusty rainwater. He then puts this in an old sock and dabs the ink onto photo paper thus creating unique images.

This is a really good way to socialise and be creative to wind down from the stresses of a working day. 

Why not join them on Tuesday nights at eight o’clock at Ryan’s, they even provide you with pencil and paper. Great fun.

By  the way I used my iPad and was completely useless but nobody minded. The art was in the conversation.