5 Delicious Bloomsday Festival Activities for the Food and Drink Enthusiast

bloomsday festival 2017 food and drinks featured

June 16, 1904. A day immortalised in the pages of James Joyce’s Ulysses and celebrated by lovers of literature every year in the affectionately named Bloomsday, in honour of Joycean hero Leopold Bloom. Nowadays the festivities have escalated to a full festival running from June 11th to the 16th, with numerous activities that will entice hardcore admirers, absolute beginners and everyone in between: Bloomsday Festival, which offers readings and literary-oriented events, but also several other ways to experience a taste of this classic.

Here’s a round-up of some of the coolest food and drink-related activities for Bloomsday Festival.

16th June – Blommsday Afternoon Tea 

Experience a leisurely afternoon tea in the elegant Georgian surrounds of the James Joyce Centre’s Kenmare Room. A menu with nods to Ulysses and entertainment by Joycean sirens Sinead Murphy and Darina Gallagher will make for a unique afternoon tea.

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Price: €30

Where: James Joyce Centre 35, North Great George’s Street, Dublin

More information: bloomsdayfestival.ie

June 16th – Bloomsday at The Lincoln’s Inn

Enjoy a pint at the Lincoln’s Inn, where James Joyce met Nora Barnacle in June 1904. This beautifully preserved pub will be pouring its own brew of Joyce’s stout, Nora’s red ale and Bloomsday lager! A pint of any of the above, accompanied by a hearty traditional Irish stew can be ordered for €13.

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Where: 18 – 19 Lincoln Place Dublin, County Dublin

More information: bloomsdayfestival.ie

16th June – Bloomsday at The Bailey

The Bailey is a place of special significance for Bloomsday. The original Dublin Bloomsday was organised by a rag-tag group of artists and intellectuals there in 1954. They visited the Martello Tower in Sandycove during the day, and spend the evening at the Bailey. Drop by and get in the Bloomsday mood with a complimentary boater hat (subject to availability),while enjoying dishes and cocktails inspired in James Joyce and accompanied by readings of Ulysses.

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Where: The Bailey Pub. Duke Street, Dublin

More information: bloomsdayfestival.ie

17th June – The Joyce of Whiskey Deluxe in Association with Irish Food Trail

Whiskey is not a stranger presence in Joyce’s work, from the stories of ‘The Sisters’ and ‘Counterparts’ to the life-giving elixir at the heart of Finnegans Wake. The water of life also playd an important role in the author’s life, as his father was the secretary of the Dublin and Chapelizod Distillery Co his maternal grandfather John Murray once acted as sales representative for Powers.

Celebrate whiskey in Joyce’s world with a two hour tour led by a local expert. Stop at three Irish pubs and sample two Irish whiskeys in each, accompanied with delicious bites.

Whiskey flows through Joyce’s works, from the stories of ‘The Sisters’ and ‘Counterparts’ to the life-giving elixir at the heart of Finnegans Wake. In fact so central was it to his last work that, when proposing the ill-conceived notion of having fellow novelist James Stephens finish Finnegans Wake as his his health declined, Joyce quipped that it would apt to have “J J and S” under the title – a reference to one of Dublin’s most famous whiskey distillers John Jameson & Sons! Whiskey also had an important historical and biographical significance for Joyce, whose father was secretary of the Dublin and Chapelizod Distillery Co and whose maternal grandfather John Murray once acted as sales representative for Powers. Join us on this special jaunt around the capital’s bars to celebrate the many allusions to distilleries and whiskey in Joyce’s works whilst discovering Dublin’s rich whiskey culture. This two hour tour will be led by a local expert and features stops at three Irish pubs where you can sample two unique Irish whiskeys and sample some delicious tasting trays of local food!

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Price: €60

Where: Dublin Castle (Palace St Entrance) Palace Street, Dublin

More information: bloomsdayfestival.ie

The Joyce of Food in Association with Irish Food Trail

Visit three traditional Irish eateries with an expert local guide. Enjoy nods to Ulysses’ featured bites such as Bloom’s pork kidney breakfast, his lunch of Gorgonzola and burgundy in Davy Byrne’s pub or the potato he carries in his pocket as a talisman of his Irish mother. Each restaurant visit will serve a different course inspired by Joyce’s work accompanied by a reading of the excerpt from Ulysses to which it relates.

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Price: €60

Where: Dublin Castle (Palace St Entrance) Palace Street, Dublin

More information: bloomsdayfestival.ie

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