When my hostess Naomi was giving me the grand tour of quaint corridor village Carrigaline, about 12 km/7 miles from Cork City, she was sure to point out Hassett’s Artisan Bakery and make it known that it would be worth my Euro and SD card space to give it a go. I didn’t wait terribly long; in fact by Tuesday I had free tickets to the circus, given to me by John Duane, the friendliest butcher I ever did meet. Though I tried to wait out the rain and cold, it was just time to suck it up, put on my wellies and coat and head out.
I decided to leave myself some time to explore the Main street and pop in at Hassett’s. The front of the shop serves primarily as the bakery with mounds of lovely loafs of fresh bread and confectionery while the back is dedicated to counter service style deli and cafe. They are members of Good Food Ireland, Irish Food Tourism group where members are “recognised and endorsed for their commitment to using Irish, local and artisan food produce.”
My options were limited due to the time of day in that no fresh specialties were coming out of the kitchen any longer, just what was on hand that they had prepared earlier in the day. Otherwise I would have ordered the Ploughman’s Lunch and am still angry at myself for not making the time to come back with enough time and space in my stomach for it. Something to look forward to next trip, though. A particular sandwich kept catching my eye, though I put up a valiant resistance initially, I knew if I took a pass I would be up at 2:00am craving it…
Chicken & Stuffing Sandwich (€4.50)
That’s right, chicken and stuffing sandwich. I could not wrap my brain around the concept, though I suppose people who make sandwiches using all of their Thanksgiving leftovers would have an inkling of what a joy like this sandwich brings. I asked for brown bread and had a little bit of mayo as I was wary of the stuffing being dry. Worried for naught as it turned out; I don’t think my own culinary skills cam match the tender moistness this chicken and stuffing brought to my taste buds. The chicken was juicily succulent, and the stuffing – which I was afraid would clash with the bread – stood out as the perfect condiment to dress up plain white meat. The bread is the crowning jewel of Hassetts and it was easy to see, to taste rather, how they became famed for it. Believe it or not, I willed self-control and saved the other half of my sandwich for dinner later.
Sausage Roll (€2.20)
I was out running errands one day close to the end of my stay in Carrigaline and wanted to make sure I got to try one more bite. Forgoing the Ploughman’s Lunch simply because I forgot (it’s on the printed menu but wasn’t up on the chalkboard or the standard sandwich menu on the wall) I opted for a sausage roll. It was seasoned well but the best part was definitely the flaky pastry exterior. It’s good for a quick bite on the go.
I would return and recommend Hassetts in a heartbeat. The menu offers a wide variety of great breakfast and lunch food; it’s a shame their website is useless in the area of basic info such as menu/hours/address (“4th shop on the left” is as close of an address as you’re going to find). What it lacks in information though it more than makes up for in visual appeal as there are numerous images of their goods. Hassetts is so beloved that even those who openly ragged on Carrigaline to me would pause and make an exception for Hassetts. Hell, even Discover Ireland has given it a nice little write-up.
Hassetts Artisan Bakery
Main Street, Carrigaline, Co Cork, Republic Of Ireland
+353 (0)21 437 1534