It’s a new year and #TeamAlice is back refreshed, recharged, and bursting with recommendations from our Christmas break.

Here’s a rundown of the books, movies, food and activities that have made us merry over the festive period… and kept us sane during Covid isolations!

Reading:

  • ‘You Are What You Read, Why Changing Your Media Diet Can Change the World’, by Jodie Jackson.
  • A State of Emergency‘, by Richard Chambers.
  • Feminism Backwards‘, by Rosita Sweetman, one of the founding members of the Irish Women’s Liberation Movement in the 1970s. “One of their demands as a movement was equal pay. We’re still chipping away at that 50 years later with WorkEqual.” – Ciara.
  • Love in a Time of War: My Years with Robert Fisk‘, by Lara Marlowe.
  • Leonard & Hungry Paul‘, by Rónán Hession, the One Dublin One Book 2021 choice. “A heartfelt and hilarious portrait of quotidian, life-long friendship; its preciousness and the vulnerabilities of growing up and growing apart. The tin of Roses scene, in particular, had me doubled over crying laughing. #YouMayWishToNoteTheAbove” – Maisie.
  • After the Fall – Being American in the World We’ve Made‘, by Ben Rhodes. “This book, by President Obama’s former National Security Advisor, assesses America’s role in international relations in the 21st century.” – Ciarán.

Watching:

  • Baron Noir‘. “A highly entertaining French political drama delivering a perfect blend of the Sopranos and House of Cards.” – Ciarán.
  • On Disney Plus, ‘Dopesick, The Shocking True Story of America’s Opioid Epidemic‘, the new Marvel series ‘Hawkeye‘, and ‘The Rescue‘. “A brilliant documentary telling the story of the rescue of 12 boys and their coach from a flooded cave in Northern Thailand” – Martina.
  • On Netflix, ‘Pose‘ and ‘Maid‘. “A brilliant miniseries starring real-life mother and daughter Andie MacDowell and Margaret Qualley.” – Maisie.
  • King Richard‘. “A fascinating look at the Williams sisters’ path to tennis superstardom.” – Martina.
  • In the cinema… Kenneth Brannagh’s ‘Belfast‘ (“One of the best movies I’ve seen in a long time” – Martina) and ‘The Tragedy of Macbeth’ starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand (“Just wow!” – Emma).

Listening:

  • Jack O’Rourke’s album ‘Wild Place‘.
  • Sweet Bobby‘ podcast. “Soooo good! Kept me going through an isolation period!” – Sorcha.
  • 544 Days‘ podcast. “A series about Iranian-American journalist Jason Rezaian and his experience in captivity in an Iranian prison.” – Ciarán.
  • Table Manners‘. “Since I started watching Pose, I just can’t get enough Billy Porter in my life and spotted he was on a recent episode of ‘Table Manners’ – an old favourite podcast. It was such a great episode, he is so entertaining and really full of the joys of life. Perfect listening for one of the long Christmas walks!” – Niamh.

Eating:

  • Little Forest in Blackrock. “Possibly the best pizza in Ireland, an innovative, ingredient-driven, local modern Italian-inspired restaurant. It is a sister project of John & Sandy Wyer’s Forest Avenue.” – Emily.
  • Grow HQ in Waterford. “An annual pilgrimage for farm-to-fork, gate-to-plate, garden-to-gullet fix! Always worth the two-hour drive.” – Maisie.
  • Friday supper at Killruddery. “An amazing, relaxed dining experience with a delicious homegrown seasonal menu.” – Ciarán.
  • Indian and Pakistani restaurant in Glasthule, Daata. “A taste explosion!” – Emily.
  • For drinks – Bar 1661 off Capel street. “One of Dublin’s best bars for cocktails. Their Belfast Coffee is a must – cosiness in a glass!” – Darragh.
  • And within lunching distance of our Rathmines office when we can all return… i Monelli in Portobello and Pizza Yard Ranelagh where Kate and her friends tackled the Yard Long Pizza!

Doing:

  • Learning to make Irish Whiskey Espresso Martinis. “Thanks to our client Irish Whiskey Association for the cocktail recipe!” – Emily
  • The ‘Tolu Makay Experience‘ at The Grand Social. “Not a recent recommendation but one to watch out for future gigs! This was one of my first gigs after the lockdowns and possibly one of the best I’ve ever been to.” – Emma
  • In wholesome New Year activities, Maisie has been undertaking “At-home and in-studio workouts led by the tireless trainers at Swan Leisure, Rathmines”. Kate has started “BodyBalance classes with Westpark Fitness – yoga classes that embrace elements of Tai Chi and Pilates.” And Emily has been enjoying “wintry walks up Djouce mountain to say goodbye to 2021, Howth, and Wicklow Head, making pals with the fuzzy seals!”

We hope our A-List recommendations help to see you through the long month of January! Wishing everyone a very Happy New Year!

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