Moriarty’s Bakery

Moriarty's Bakery

Moriarty's Bakery (2008)

Do you remember the taste of Moriarty’s bread and the smell of the buns on Thursdays? New to Kenmare, in search of floor covering, I was told to call in at Johnny Carpet’s on New Street. Next to the old Cinema building, now Johnny’s carpet showroom, I came upon a little white building with its blue door invitingly open. Hand painted letters above the door gave notice of the source of the delicious smell wafting from within: Moriarty’s Bakery.

How could I resist? Stepping into the dimly lit interior I was greeted by two men. One was sitting on a bench kitty-corner to the counter, the other standing behind that. The seated one wore a cap. The other wore a shopkeeper’s smock. A stack of white wrapping paper lay in front of him. On the shelves behind were large loaves of white bread, packets of biscuits, tea and sugar. A long nail held a stack of invoices. The air was filled with the silence of an interrupted conversation.

Mr. Moriarty is Sleeping (2004)

I asked for a loaf in an accent that induced the counterman to talk of his many relations in the States and to enquire how I came to be in his shop and his town. Satisfied with the exchange, he chose a tall golden loaf and wrapped it deftly in paper, tucking and folding with the expertise of years.  As I left with my loaf the seated man resumed his conversation. I was later to learn that there were three Mr. Moriartys at work in the bakery. The baker brother worked the dough and ovens during the night, a second drove and distributed and the third, my first encounter, took care of the business of sales and counter chat. These two paintings then, Moriarty’s Bakery and Mr. Moriarty is Sleeping recall my fond memories of the Moriarty brothers, their bakery and the wonderful bread that we used in one of the popular items on our cafe menu – The Moriarty Melt. Do you remember it? Now that was a sandwich you could sink your teeth into!

A solicitor’s office and flats now occupy the space of the former bakery. But delicious artisan breads and buns are still being baked in Kenmare. Bread Crumb Bakery continues the New Street baking tradition with a continental flavour. Henry street has Truffle Pig and Jam, both sources of delicious baked goods. And a talented French baker has taken up residence in the Rose Garden on Sneem Road. And I must not forget Harrington’s Bakery in Tuosist, the source of the best Traditional Irish Brown Bread!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Kerry May 6, 2011 at 5:39 pm

Fond memories of the bakery – walking down the streets, sunny summer, the scent of freshly baked hot-cross buns, begging and tugging your hand – ‘pleeeaaaase?’

Helena May 30, 2011 at 2:49 pm

You are such a good baker by now that you could start your own!

Tapegeliema May 27, 2011 at 12:45 am

Kiitos mielenkiintoinen blogi

Helena May 27, 2011 at 3:28 pm

Mary, whose Uncles were Mike, Johnny and Danny Moriarty sent a nice note from Chelmsford, Ma. after reading the blog. Thanks Mary, The work is on the way!

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