Inspired by Myrtle Allen’s passion for cooking, her daughter-in-law, Darina Allen, founded the Ballymaloe Cookery School. A short drive from Ballymaloe House, it is regarded as the finest cookery school in Ireland, and students come from all over the world to attend its courses. During our stay, we took an afternoon class and came away with new knowledge and a sheaf of excellent recipes. Even if you are not aflame with culinary curiosity, the school is well worth visiting for its ornamental gardens, as well as the orchards and vegetable plots that supply the kitchen at Ballymaloe House. The Garden Shop will be of great interest to gardeners and cooks alike, with its selection of tools, seeds, cookware and products, including the famous Ballymaloe Country Relish. You will also find books by Darina and her daughter-in-law, Rachel Allen, who has become a culinary star in her own right.