Set well back from the road and just a few minutes’ walk from Kenmare town, this neat bungalow set in landscaped gardens has been well known as a B&B for many years - and the current owners, Vince and Mary, do still offer (unregistered) accommodation - although most people head here for the food.
Vince is the chef and Mary has wide experience in local hotels, and they have continued the Rose Garden’s USP - the seriously delicious food they serve in their café and also the patisserie that’s on sale out front at very reasonable prices.
The display that greets arriving customers is highly impressive for a small owner-run bakery, ranging from large cakes and tarts – such as almond & pear, or lemon - sold by the slice, to individual tartlets, scones, cupcakes, brownies and croissants.
And there are savoury items too, including a choice of excellent quiches. Homemade ice-cream contains only fruit, cream and sugar (no egg) and there’s a choice of vanilla, strawberry chocolate, mango and passionfruit or an unusual banana and pistachio.
All desserts, ice-cream and quiche slices are available for sale, a godsend to visitors, especially people self-catering in the area though the café is equally popular with locals.
With plenty of parking, outdoor seating and a porch with comfortable seating, as well as quirky rooms indoor, the café offers a variety of food. The full Irish breakfast is served all day, with extra speciality breakfast items including eggs Florentine, from 9am – 12 noon. There’s an excellent lunch menu with salads, baked potatoes with various fillings, quiches, toasted sandwiches and baguettes and recommended crab cakes with chilli and lime mayonnaise.
And if you fancy a drop of wine with your meal, it will set you back just €4.50 a glass.