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Host: Cathleen

Ballyvaughan, Ireland

USD
$38-$88 per person

Traditional Irish cooking in the Burren

Host offerings
  • House
  • In-home meal
  • Pets
  • Vegetarian
  • Alcohol
  • Transportation
  • Cooking class
  • Market visit
  • Food tour

Meet Cathleen

Cathleen learned to cook from her mother when she was 12 years old and enjoyed hosting and cooking for her large Irish family. Passionate about meeting people and the outdoors, Cathleen is an active cyclist and jogger. She loves to host travelers at her cafe, Burren Fine Wine & Food, a lovely, old renovated cottage (the home of her grandparents). In the winter, Cathleen hosts at her own home behind the cafe as it is closed. The cottage cafe is a seasonal day time eatery that offers a selection of local Irish foods procured within a 20-mile radius and wines that she hand-selects from France and Italy. She runs it together with her daughter who also offers guided walks and cycling tours through the countryside. The Burren is a famous area on the Wild Atlantic Way known for its limestone karst (rock formations) and the flora and fauna. Get a glimpse of the unusual Arctic and Mediterranean flora growing side by side in her neighborhood.

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-8 guests) Meet your host Cathleen at her café (a beautiful stone cottage that was the home of her grandparents) on their Irish farm. Sip on a cup of tea as your host shares stories about the family and the farm that has been in the Burren for generations. Join Cathleen (and her husband John and daughter Karen when they are in town) at the dining table to enjoy an authentic homemade Irish meal. The café will be closed during your experience in the evening so it will remain private for you and Cathleen. Your seasonal meal will be comprised of high quality ingredients sourced locally. Your Irish meal with Cathleen may start with a salad, and include a main such as a typical beef and Guinness stew or the quintessential Irish cabbage and bacon with a side of potatoes. Your meal will conclude with a dessert of fresh fruit pavlova or a seasonal fruit crumble.

Please note that unlike a typical Traveling Spoon experience in a home, this experience takes place in Cathleen's cafe.

Cooking experience: (1-6 guests) Join your host Cathleen at her charming café kitchen to learn to cook an authentic Irish meal from scratch. You will learn to cook from Cathleen’s personal repertoire of recipes. Your hands-on cooking class will last about 2 hours. Roll up your sleeves and prepare to bake brown soda bread, cook a beef and Guinness stew or cabbage and bacon dish, and create a delicious seasonal dessert. Enjoy cooking your traditional Irish meal before you sit down at the dining table to share the meal you helped prepare with Cathleen.

Notes: Cathleen is happy to accommodate vegetarians and vegans so if this applies to you please mention it in the booking form under dietary preferences.

Languages spoken: English

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Fresh green salad and seasonal vegetables
  • Beef and Guinness stew or cabbage and bacon or Shepherd’s pie
  • Irish soda bread
  • Side of potatoes
  • Fresh fruit pavlova or seasonal fruit crumble
PERSONALLY VETTED REVIEW
A Traveling Spoon ambassador visited this host. Here is their personal review.

The old renovated cottage is made of stone and is in a fantastic woodland location with a lovely view of the Burren - authentic Irish cuisine in a lovely cottage environment. Normally the cottage is a café but Cathleen intends to provide the private Traveling Spoon experience in the evening when the café is closed to the public. Cathleen may have the experience at her home in the winter but travelers will love the cottage experience. The decoration is really special including hand carved solid tables – very cosy atmosphere. There are also tables outside. The menu is lovely and very fresh: they use all local produce from the Burren region (cheese, meat, fish). They also do home-made pizza, salads, fresh cakes and tarts. There's a great selection of wine too from France, Spain, Italy. It’s possible also to go outside and pick up herbs and plants that will end up on the plate (wild garlic, etc.). You can do a very short walk (if the weather is ok) to visit the ruins of an old church and fairy fort as well as the well Cathleen descended as a child to fetch water. Cathleen is not a chatty person by nature and may take a little while to warm up but the experience was lovely. It’s a bit off the main track (5 minutes from Ballyvaughan village by car) but on the main road in Clare – N67 with plenty of tourist attractions around - Aillwee Caves, the Cliffs of Moher (number one attraction),the Wild Atlantic Way, Galway, etc.

Cliff, Traveling Spoon Ambassador

Traveler reviews

Wonderful time with Cathleen and her daughter Karen. Real Irish people! The chocolate beef stew was sensational.
- David June 26, 2019

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Cathleen

$38-$88 USD

per person
100% VETTED
Learn more
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee or your money back
  • Free cancellation up to 48 hours in advance
  • Credit card is not charged until the host confirms your booking
  • Private experience
Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$56 $44 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$88 $72 $58
Alcohol
$9 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$56 $44 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$88 $72 $58
Alcohol
$9 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
7:30pm-9:30pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
6:00pm-9:00pm

Meet Cathleen

Cathleen learned to cook from her mother when she was 12 years old and enjoyed hosting and cooking for her large Irish family. Passionate about meeting people and the outdoors, Cathleen is an active cyclist and jogger. She loves to host travelers at her cafe, Burren Fine Wine & Food, a lovely, old renovated cottage (the home of her grandparents). In the winter, Cathleen hosts at her own home behind the cafe as it is closed. The cottage cafe is a seasonal day time eatery that offers a selection of local Irish foods procured within a 20-mile radius and wines that she hand-selects from France and Italy. She runs it together with her daughter who also offers guided walks and cycling tours through the countryside. The Burren is a famous area on the Wild Atlantic Way known for its limestone karst (rock formations) and the flora and fauna. Get a glimpse of the unusual Arctic and Mediterranean flora growing side by side in her neighborhood.

What to expect

Please note menu might vary. If there are particular dishes you are interested in trying, please include your request in the booking form.

In-home meal: (1-8 guests) Meet your host Cathleen at her café (a beautiful stone cottage that was the home of her grandparents) on their Irish farm. Sip on a cup of tea as your host shares stories about the family and the farm that has been in the Burren for generations. Join Cathleen (and her husband John and daughter Karen when they are in town) at the dining table to enjoy an authentic homemade Irish meal. The café will be closed during your experience in the evening so it will remain private for you and Cathleen. Your seasonal meal will be comprised of high quality ingredients sourced locally. Your Irish meal with Cathleen may start with a salad, and include a main such as a typical beef and Guinness stew or the quintessential Irish cabbage and bacon with a side of potatoes. Your meal will conclude with a dessert of fresh fruit pavlova or a seasonal fruit crumble.

Please note that unlike a typical Traveling Spoon experience in a home, this experience takes place in Cathleen's cafe.

Cooking experience: (1-6 guests) Join your host Cathleen at her charming café kitchen to learn to cook an authentic Irish meal from scratch. You will learn to cook from Cathleen’s personal repertoire of recipes. Your hands-on cooking class will last about 2 hours. Roll up your sleeves and prepare to bake brown soda bread, cook a beef and Guinness stew or cabbage and bacon dish, and create a delicious seasonal dessert. Enjoy cooking your traditional Irish meal before you sit down at the dining table to share the meal you helped prepare with Cathleen.

Notes: Cathleen is happy to accommodate vegetarians and vegans so if this applies to you please mention it in the booking form under dietary preferences.

Languages spoken: English

Sample menu

This is just a sample menu to give you an idea of the types of dishes the host cooks. Your menu will vary according to seasonal availability.
  • Fresh green salad and seasonal vegetables
  • Beef and Guinness stew or cabbage and bacon or Shepherd’s pie
  • Irish soda bread
  • Side of potatoes
  • Fresh fruit pavlova or seasonal fruit crumble
PERSONALLY VETTED REVIEW
A Traveling Spoon ambassador visited this host. Here is their personal review.

The old renovated cottage is made of stone and is in a fantastic woodland location with a lovely view of the Burren - authentic Irish cuisine in a lovely cottage environment. Normally the cottage is a café but Cathleen intends to provide the private Traveling Spoon experience in the evening when the café is closed to the public. Cathleen may have the experience at her home in the winter but travelers will love the cottage experience. The decoration is really special including hand carved solid tables – very cosy atmosphere. There are also tables outside. The menu is lovely and very fresh: they use all local produce from the Burren region (cheese, meat, fish). They also do home-made pizza, salads, fresh cakes and tarts. There's a great selection of wine too from France, Spain, Italy. It’s possible also to go outside and pick up herbs and plants that will end up on the plate (wild garlic, etc.). You can do a very short walk (if the weather is ok) to visit the ruins of an old church and fairy fort as well as the well Cathleen descended as a child to fetch water. Cathleen is not a chatty person by nature and may take a little while to warm up but the experience was lovely. It’s a bit off the main track (5 minutes from Ballyvaughan village by car) but on the main road in Clare – N67 with plenty of tourist attractions around - Aillwee Caves, the Cliffs of Moher (number one attraction),the Wild Atlantic Way, Galway, etc.

Cliff, Traveling Spoon Ambassador

Traveler reviews

Wonderful time with Cathleen and her daughter Karen. Real Irish people! The chocolate beef stew was sensational.
- David June 26, 2019

Pricing (per person)*
1 person 2-4 ppl 5+ ppl
In-Home Meal
$56 $44 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$88 $72 $58
Alcohol
$9 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
1 person 2-4 people 5+ people
In-Home Meal
$56 $44 $38
Cooking Experience + Meal
$88 $72 $58
Alcohol
$9 per person
*Does not include 3% payment processing fee applied at checkout.
Experience Timings
Lunch Dinner
In-Home Meal
7:30pm-9:30pm
Cooking Experience+ Meal
6:00pm-9:00pm
ABOUT TRAVELING SPOON

Traveling Spoon connects you with meaningful culinary experiences, from private cooking lessons to homecooked meals in people's homes. Enjoy an immersive cultural experience that gives you a glimpse into the local way of life.

FAQ

    You can cancel your reservation for free up until 48 hours before your experience. Experiences within 48 hours are not refundable.

    If you have a question for your host, you can include a note in the field "Write a note to your host" during the booking process. Once your booking is confirmed, you will be emailed your host's direct contact information and you will also be able to message the host through your profile. You can always cancel your booking and receive a full refund 48 hours or more before your experience. If you have other questions you can also email us at reservations@travelingspoon.com.

    Most of our hosts are able to accommodate dietary restrictions and allergies, including vegetarian and gluten free options. For vegetarian travelers, we have an icon on each host profile to indicate whether that host can also offer a fully vegetarian menu. There is a section in the booking form to note any allergies or dietary restrictions which will be sent directly to your host.

    Some hosts offer alcohol as an optional add-on for travelers who are of legal drinking age. Pricing for alcohol is visible on the host profile page and includes one to two glasses of wine, beer or local alcohol.

    Have a flight or other tour planned and can’t make the timing provided? If the timing listed on the host’s profile doesn’t work for you, our hosts can often accommodate timing changes. Because all of our experiences are private our hosts are happy to tailor experiences to meet your travel needs. Simply note your request in the booking process.

    Your card will not be charged until your host accepts your booking. Typically hosts respond to bookings within 72 hours. In the event your host is unavailable on your selected date and your host rejects your booking your credit card will not be charged.

    Your host's detailed contact information, including their phone number, address, and direction notes, will all be provided immediately upon successful confirmation of your experience (after your hosts accepts your booking and your credit card is successfully processed). This information will be emailed to you to the email address you used to sign up, and will also be visible on your Traveling Spoon profile.

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    100% of Traveling Spoon experiences are private! Just you and your host and host’s family.

    Hosts typically respond to booking inquiries within 72 hours. If for some reason you have not heard from your host or if you have any questions you can always contact us at reservations@travelingspoon.com.

    Your safety and security are our top priority. To ensure this, Traveling Spoon personally vets 100% of all hosts, including an in-person host visit, to ensure each host and experience meets our strict quality requirements.

    Some hosts offer transportation as an optional add-on for travelers. Typically this is round trip transportation with pick up and drop off at your hotel. Pricing is quoted per car. Specific instructions for transportation will be provided in your confirmation details when your booking is confirmed.

    Many of our hosts accommodate solo travelers. You can see if a host accepts solo travelers by looking at the traveler range found next to the experience descriptions on the host profile (indicated by the numbers in parentheses next to "In-home meal", "Cooking experience" and "Market visit").

    Most of our Traveling Spoon experiences are incredibly family friendly and can accommodate infants and children. If a host is unable to accommodate children that will be noted in the “Notes” section of their profile. Our child pricing policy is children aged 5-11 are 50% off, and infants aged 0-4 are free.