Cornucopia: Another Love Story

Orange rectangle with the white fist-shaped Vegan MoFo logo and the text "Vegan Month of Food 2012."

Ah, travel recaps. Somehow they always get away from me, and by the time I finish posting them I’ve been back home for months and the finer details are rapidly escaping me. So it goes with the remainder of my Ireland/Scotland recap. When last I left you, S and I had just returned from a day trip touring the stunning Scottish highlands, and we wrapped up our day with another meal at Henderson’s. The very next day, we hopped a flight back to Ireland for the remaining couple days of our overseas adventure.

I’ve already talked a bit about some Dublin eats, but I’ve held off on sharing my absolute favorite restaurant in dear dirty Dublin. In fact, it was my favorite eatery on the entire trip, edging out even Henderson’s. Shocking! But for its variety, atmosphere, and general delightfulness, Cornucopia takes the vegan cake. It also, coincidentally, serves vegan cake.

Big slice of double-layer chocolate cake on a plate, with a thick chocolate frosting between the layers and on top.

Chocolate heaven.

With its cheerful red storefront and pleasing, almost tea-room-like interior, Cornucopia is the perfect mix of homey and elegant. Dim (but not dark!) lighting keeps things cozy, and a variety of seating arrangements (benches, chairs, booths, bar stools, tables of assorted sizes) ensure that you’re comfortable while you chow down. As with most other places we ate on our trip, patrons select and pay for their meals at the front counter. I’m pretty sold on this arrangement – it lets you preview your food and see what looks the most scrumptious rather than order off a menu with limited, if any, photos. How could I resist ordering something this appealing?

In the foreground is a large triangular phyllo dough packet, stuffed quite full. In the background is a raw cabbage and carrot slaw and a green salad.

Moar phyllo!

Unlike Henderson’s, Cornucopia also features a full staff of friendly folks who are happy to take from-the-table orders if you want dessert or a post-dinner espresso. This saves you from interrupting your meal to wait in line for a hot tea or a slice of a fruity tart:

Thin slice of a creamy tart.

Yes please.

And beyond all those perks, the food is just plain good. Cornucopia uses many locally grown and organic ingredients, and although it’s a vegetarian restaurant, each day it features a variety of vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free, and raw foods. Everything’s made in-house for ultimate freshness. S and I dined here three times, and each experience was as pleasant as the last. Cornucopia is often pretty crowded, so we made reservations for two of our visits. Even though it wasn’t full when we arrived, we were happy to have reserved spots as we watched the lines get longer and folks filter in.

If you’re wondering why I’ve just half-heartedly inserted photos among the text, it’s because I’m a bad, bad blogger and I can’t remember everything we ate. I need to start taking notes! For example, I can’t with certainty tell you what this meal was, although I know that the basil scone was lovely and that S enjoyed that bowl of a raw, chilled avocado-based soup on two of our dining occasions:

A plateful of cauliflower, potatoes, and other veggies with a scone. In the background is a bowl of soup.

Messy deliciousness.

I think it was a potato-cauliflower casserole or gratin-type dish, but I’m not totally sure. I am, however, sure that it was delicious. We did, after all, eat three of our four Dublin dinners at Cornucopia. :)

To make up for my shoddy food bloggery, let me share a photo that I think captures much of what you’ll see if you do a tour of Ireland’s historical sites. This was taken at Glendalough, a monastic settlement founded in the 6th (!) century.

Gorgeous clear blue sky and very green trees. In the foreground are various gravestones and crosses; in the background is a tall stone round tower, jutting far above the ground.

Round towers.

Ah, Ireland.

What’re your tips for remembering meals you ate on vacation? Have you ever been to Ireland?

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8 thoughts on “Cornucopia: Another Love Story

  1. What a beautiful place, I so want to go there myself. Unfortunately I have never been to Ireland.
    I have no tips for remembering meals I ate on vacation. Usually I just note the name and try to search the internet for a good recipe.

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  2. I saw your hendersons post and loved it because I loved hendersons when I lived in scotland and now you are in Dublin – another place I loved ti visit and will be back soon – can’t wait – though I don’t think I will get as far out of town as glendalough – love the photo and must keep cornucopia on my list for dublin if I get time

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  3. Pingback: Lazy Sunday: A Bunch More Recipes You Should Totally Make | vegga

  4. Oh, I loved Dublin! So much history. We ate at Cornucopia twice, and I loved it so much that I bought their cookbook. We also visited another vegan friendly place based only on their name – Queen of tarts!

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    • Aw man, I didn’t know Queen of Tarts had vegan options! I went there way back when I studied abroad in Ireland (in my pre-vegan days) and didn’t even think to check whether they were vegan-friendly when we returned on this trip. Great tip! Guess I’ll have to go back… :)

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  5. Pingback: Irish Farls — Vegan Potato Scones | vegga

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