Kilkenny is known for its food and craft culture and these are celebrated on the Trail Kilkenny Food and Craft Experience Trail! Watch highly skilled, master crafters at work, join a guided tour, get an exciting hands on experience and sample delicious food and drink, as you discover the history and culture with some of Kilkenny’s most renown craft and food providers. Find the perfect gift or treat yourself!
Since 1979 the master craftsmen at Jerpoint Glass Studio have created beautiful Irish handmade glass for your home. Drawing on 2000 years of glass blowing tradition, the skilled craftsmen individually create each piece in the Jerpoint collection. Jerpoint Glass will enhance any space plus make a thoughtful and welcomed gift for someone special.
Watching glass blown by hand is a most exciting spectacle! From the viewing area at the glass studio, you will see the skilled glassblowers perform their magic as they turn flowing red-hot molten glass into the beautiful Jerpoint shapes, right before your eyes. Click here for more information.
Highbank Orchards and Distillery
Highbank Orchards is home to the original and innovative and multi award winning Highbank Orchard Syrup. It is here that the delicious Highbank Apple juices are produced, including their award winning Ciders, Brandey and Vinegars.
During blossom time in May, harvest time in October and November, through to Christmas, Highbank offers an insight into a small scale Irish food producer adding value to product. Visit the Highbank Organic Farm Shop for samples of the organic orchard syrup, juices, organic ciders and apple spirits all produced directly from the orchards.
Guided Tours / Group Booking
A tractor train tour takes visitors through the organic orchards and a visit to the distillery ending at the Highbank Orchard stone built 17th century mill with a sampling of our delicious Single Estate organic ciders, syrups and apple spirits. Your Guide will explain the process that creates the distinctive flavours and character of our organic cider, apple gin and apple brandy, meeting the owners for a chat on local history.
• Our guided tours last approximately one and half hours.
• Free Parking
• We welcome small groups as well as coaches.
Nicholas Mosse Pottery
Over the last 45 years, Nicholas Mosse pottery has evolved from a one man pottery operation into a world famous handcrafted production pottery employing 60 plus local people. It has drawn its inspiration from the surrounding countryside and earlier Irish folk traditions, and its charming and colourful designs can be traced right back to early 19th century Irish country life.
The visitor will first see the renovated flour mill sitting calmly next to the River Nore where a viewing area is an inviting welcome. Inside, this flagship store carries everything the pottery makes plus all sorts of other goods to make a country house a country home. The pottery has found fans all over the world and has graced the shelves of many fabulous shops (Tiffany’s, Bloomingdales, et al.). Irish woollens blend with other European crafts and gifts to inspire any visitor to indulge in a bit of Irish style. The makers and crafts people can be viewed through large glass windows or, if a tour is booked, the visitor will be taken inside and walked through every stage of the pottery production. Seeing the intricate hand decorating is always a mind blowing experience.
Behind the scenes Nick’s insistence on ecologically sound practice can be glimpsed: the river provides hydro power for electricity and all possible recycling is undertaken,—from clay to water to waste. A visitors’ area displays the history of the mill and the pottery and Nick’s large collection of early Irish spongeware can be seen in the charming upstairs café. Altogether this old mill provides a wonderful, relaxing and interesting afternoon; it is a must-see for any visit to the area.
Visitors can browse among a huge selection of Nicholas Mosse pottery, linen and glass, over three floors of the store. Visitors can watch their potters and decorators at work through glass windows, throw the shapes, fire up the kiln, glaze, paint and sponge-decorate each individual piece of Nicholas Mosse pottery by hand.
Nicholas Mosse Pottery offer tours on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. They require a minimum of 10 people to book a tour. Cost is €5.00 per person. Tours are conducted by a pottery staff member and take 30-40 minutes. They require advance booking. Visitors can end their visit in the cafe which is housed upstairs in the attractive mill providing splendid views of the River Nore. Lunch is served daily.
Husband and wife team Mag and Ger Kirwan are at the center of the Goatsbridge story. They live on the farm with their family and work together to carry on the proud tradition of Trout Farming. Each daily catch comes directly from the crystal clear Irish waters of The Little Arrigle to your table.
Goatsbridge Trout Farm organises farm tours where visitors can learn about our traditional trout farming system, the art of smoking and processing, as well as the family history and the heritage behind their company.
You are also welcome to drop into our visitor center where you can sample and buy our products.no booking required!
Basic Tour and Light Lunch Tour – €20 per head:
Discover the family history, the traditional farming system, and the art of fish smoking followed by a light lunch containing a taste of Goatsbridge products. Minimum numbers 10 people, maximum 30.
Tour followed by full lunch menu, canapé and wine – €27.00 per head:
After much talking about the farm and heritage….the proof of the pudding is in the eating! You can taste Goatsbridge smoked trout, hot and cold, the pate and the caviar. Minimum numbers 10 people, maximum 30.
Cushendale Woollen Mills
The Cushen family have been making high quality textiles from the fleece of Irish sheep at their mill in Graignamanagh, Co. Kilkenny since the late 1700s. This family run business takes pride in preserving the skills of the textile trade. Their expertise produces beautiful natural-fibre textiles in mohair, Irish wool & lambswool.
Don’t miss this amazing experience to see, hear, smell and touch what goes into producing a ‘fabric from fleece’ in this historic Mill. A pre-booked guided tour gives you the rare opportunity to see traditional craft skills in action, the magic of turning Irish sheeps’ fleece into a quality finished product. Visitors can view the full range of Cushendale products in their adjacent mill shop. (to avoid disappointment pre-booking is required)
Ballykeefe Distillery produces a range of premium spirits in their eco friendly on farm Distillery. This family run distillery restores a historical Irish custom of family farm distilleries from centuries past, growing their own barley to produce their own whiskey.
Learn the secret’s a of a Master Distiller and experience the process of making eco-friendly premium spirits. Prepare to be educated and entertained as their expert tour guide takes you back through the ages of Irish whiskey to where it all began at its birthplace. The tour will be a journey through every part of the Ballykeefe operation, which has revived the lost traditions of a family farm distillery, with a unique commitment to environmental protection, carbon neutrality and sustainability. Go to the Ballykeefe Distillery Website to book a tour.