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Food & Drink

The food at Ballyvolane is ‘country house’ in terms of style and is meticulously prepared by our House Chef. The menus feature lots of good roasts, fresh and salt-water fish and game in season, supported by home-grown vegetables and fruit. We are fully committed to a ‘Climate Conscious Food’ ethos at Ballyvolane House. Simply stated, it is making food choices with sustainability in mind. It’s being aware about where your food comes from, how it was grown and choosing options with the lowest carbon footprint. While packaging is important, other aspects and their impact are also considered, such as growing methods, food production, and livestock conditions.

Locally Sourced Slow Food

There is an abundance of wild edible plants around the house too with leaf and flower foraging in the spring and wild mushrooms, fruit and berries in the autumn.

Picking fresh vegetables in the walled garden

We try to use ingredients from here. This means from Ballyvolane’s walled-garden, farm, river and from the local area. We rear our own rare-breed pigs. We are lucky being situated in County Cork as there is an abundance of fantastic artisan food producers close by. Our beef, lamb and mutton come from Fitzgerald Butchers in Fermoy, fish and shellfish from O’Connell’s Seafood in the English Market, Cork and from Ballycotton Seafood in Midleton, our bacon, sausages, black and white puddings and loins of bacon come from Caherbeg Free Range Pork Ltd in Rosscarbery and artisan cheeses from all over Cork, Waterford and Tipperary with the odd gem from France and not forgetting smoked fish from the genius that is Frank Hederman.

Walled Garden Fruit & Veg

Justin’s father Jeremy grows a huge amount of vegetables throughout the year in Ballyvolane’s vast walled garden. Exotic vegetables such as sea kale, Tuscan kale, asparagus and globe artichokes as well as lots of different varieties of salad leaves, 4 kinds of potatoes, chard, spinach, courgettes, all sorts of cabbages, curly kale, beetroot, Jerusalem artichokes and much more besides. Fruit such as loganberries, figs, pears, apples and raspberries are served up in season and the green house is used for growing cucumbers, chilies and tomatoes. Our orchards produce incredible amounts of fruit each autumn and we press and serve our own apple juice. We also use sloes, damsons and crab apples in our Bertha’s Revenge Gin fruit infusions.


Feeding the pigs & hens

We are keen foragers so a lot of the food is wild. There is an abundance of wild edible plants growing all over Ballyvolane House estate - spring/summer brings wild garlic, wood sorrel, common sorrel, lady’s smock, hairy bitter cress, lesser celandine, herb Robert, meadowsweet, wall-pennywort, alexanders, water cress and elderflower. In the autumn, damsons, sloes, blackberries, elderberries are used. Seashore vegetables such as rock samphire, sea rocket and sea spinach also feature in season. Wild Atlantic salmon caught on our beats on the river Blackwater as well as feathered and furred game appear on the menu in season.

Freshly baked Breads!

We make all our own jams and marmalade for breakfast, we bake our own breads, pastries and cakes. We use local Glenilen Farm traditional country butter. All our guests enjoy complimentary homemade elderflower cordial, homemade Ribena and a jar of homemade chocolate biscuits in the bedrooms.

The menus change daily and vary with seasonal, weather and fishing conditions. We are very happy to accommodate any special dietary requirements. High tea and special children’s menus are also available for little people.


Guest enjoying dinner at Ballyvolane

Informal and relaxed, the offering each night is a 4-course tasting menu. Needless to say, we cater for all special dietary requirements. Whether it is communal dining for groups, or separate tables; dinner at Ballyvolane House is an integral part of the Ballyvolane experience and a ritual not to be missed.

View some sample dinner menus here (PDF) ›

Pre-Dinner Cocktails

Bertha's Revenge Rhubarb Martini

Ballyvolane House is also the home of Bertha’s Revenge Small Batch Irish Milk Gin and is distilled in small batches in our very own artisan gin distillery in the farmyard at Ballyvolane. Launched in 2015, Bertha’s Revenge Gin has since garnered many awards from around the world.

Bertha’s Revenge Gin is aptly named after Bertha, the oldest cow in the world who died aged 48 in 1993. Using a base-spirit of whey alcohol produced by Irish dairy farmers, our own spring water, and an interesting mix of locally grown and sustainably sourced botanicals, we have hand-crafted a gin reflecting Bertha in her prime. A fragrant nose, soft mouth feel and warming spicy middle notes to mirror her maternal core. And a long confident fruit driven finish to celebrate her longevity. Pre-dinner Bertha cocktails and tipples are always a brilliant start to dinner.


We have an extensive and eclectic selection of wines available and we have gone to a great deal of trouble to select high quality wines offering excellent value for money.

View our Red Wines here (PDF) ›

View our White Wines here (PDF) ›

View our Champagne and Sweet Wine here (PDF)

Barista coffee from Mahers Coffee Roasters Cork (pic by David McClelland Photography)

A Hearty Breakfast

Breakfast is available in the dining room anytime before 12 noon – ‘The Full Monty’ or continental.

Roast lamb with walled garden vegetables at Ballyvolane House

Picnic Lunch

Picnics can taken with you on day trips or can be eaten in the house or on the grounds, advance booking is required. We do not offer a sit-down lunch option at Ballyvolane.

Afternoon Treats

Residents can enjoy our selection of loose leaf tea, herbal infusions, homemade cakes, chocolate brownies which can be enjoyed in the hall, drawing room, in your room or, weather permitting, out in the garden.