There is nothing nicer than getting a good meal served up after a good walk in the Spring sunshine that we enjoyed today. Spare a thought then for poor Edward Lloyd, who recounted the tale of his dinner at the inn at Tinnehinch in 1781:
We had given orders for a dinner at Tina-Hinch, and by the exercise we had undergone in climbing the hill, our stomachs had acquired a wonderful keenness. However, when we arrived at the Inn, our host had made very little preparation for our entertainment. After waiting as patiently as circumstances would permit for the space of an hour, the table was covered with a wet cloth, blunt knives, and the following dishes of meat served up, viz. A piece of salt beef garnished with long greens, and which seemed to have been suspended ten years in the smoak; three chickens, and a quarter of lamb, without any kind of sauce of vegetables.
The waiter was a most original Hibernian character, and beggars description. His expressions and allusions were peculiar to himself. When we expostulated with him upon the badness of our dinner, his reply was, ‘upon my shoul it is very well you get any at all;—it is no fault of mine; for I am only a lodger.’ When we desired him to bring us a few more eggs, he said ‘we might as well ask a Highlander for a pair of breeches as ask him for eggs.’ We begg’d he would go to a neighbour’s house and buy a few—his reply was, ‘upon my shoul I could not buy one if I gave a ton of coals for it.’
The full details of Edward Lloyd’s Month’s Tour in North Wales, Dublin, and its Environs are available to read in the Online Resources area in the National Library of Ireland (Eighteenth Century Catalogue). The inn wouldn’t last too much longer, as it became the preferred site for Henry Grattan’s new home.