I'm traveling in Scotland and Ireland, and am itching to bring back some tasty treats. What're your favorite food souvenirs to bring home from either?

For Scotland I'm already thinking whisky tablet, fudge, Tunnock's wafers (it's rapidly becoming evident what a sweet tooth I have), Cadbury chocolate and Haribo gummies (weird I know, but neither is the same in the US), heather honey, and whisky (from Islay). Any suggestions?

Micki Balder


Shuna L. May 22, 2016
Tea, digestives, oats, oatmeal, A SPURTLE!, salt, marmalade, honey & jams made with local berries and fruits, woolens, pottery. Cheese is extremely hard to get through customs with out getting in trouble.
bamcnamara May 22, 2016
So many----but agreed you need to get past customs.......Scotland---Cadbury, Haggis, Sausages, Potato farls, salmon, bacon, soda bread, black pudding, white pudding. Almost the same list for Ireland...put I would add dullice (seaweed). When we were kids your relatives would bring over tomatoes.....not sure why....ENJOY!!!!
HalfPint May 20, 2016
Your list looks fine to me. If you have a sweet tooth, you're going to the right country ;) Scotland (like the rest of the UK) LOVE their sweets.

I would go and see what they have in their supermarkets which don't keep products that don't sell well.. I always hit Tesco's or Sainsbury whenever I'm in London, for Cadbury's (not very expensive) and stemmed ginger. I once scored some almond paste and marzipan from Tesco's for 2 GBP for 200 gram/packs.

I'm also more of a savory food lover. So I would add cheese, butter, sea salt, dried lavender (love it in shortbread).

Totally agree Cadbury's is better, probably because it has less sugar than the US Cadbury product.
Micki B. May 20, 2016
Yes! I like where your head's at HalfPint. I think going into grocery stores while traveling (and just in general) is one of my great pleasures in life. Do you have any favorite Cadbury's?
HalfPint May 20, 2016
@Micki, I buy whatever Cadbury is unfamiliar to me (it's half the fun of food shopping). But love their 'mixes' (bags/boxes) of assorted Cadbury chocolates and "Fingers" (long thin biscuits covered in Cadbury Milk Choc, what's not to love).
amysarah May 16, 2016
Scottish smoked salmon from a local maker - vacuum packed, should be ok in an insulated bag (or maybe in checked luggage, in colder baggage area.) Also, good strong Irish tea - good gift, in interesting tin.
Micki B. May 16, 2016
I know that Scottish tea is particular in that it's designed for the soft Scottish water, so maybe Irish tea has a similar designation? I've thought about bringing some tea back from either, but maybe it's pointless without the right water.
amysarah May 16, 2016
Might not be the same as made with Irish water, but I don't know think it would be pointless either - I've had Irish tea here (NYC area) many times and it was still quite good.
Sam1148 May 15, 2016
You can get Haggis through the customs if you don't claim it as food but rather a cultural artifact.
Jan W. May 15, 2016
Isle of Mull [Cheddar] Cheese - just try it, thank me later. The same dairy also makes an unpasteurized blue cheese of excellent quality. You can buy it cut to order and vacuum packed or in various packaged shapes - so find some room in your checked bag (its colder in the cargo hold, about 43 F/7C, so it will likely survive the flight).

Sheridan's Cheesemongers also has excellent Irish and European cheeses along with other accompaniments in Dublin, Galway, and several other locations of varying size in Ireland.
Micki B. May 16, 2016
Thanks Jan! As it were, I've only had one kind of cheese here so far, and it was Isle of Mull cheddar from the market! You're right, it was delicious. Looking forward to checking out Sheridan's.
Susan W. May 15, 2016
I totally agree that Cadbury chocolate and Haribo gummies are very different in the UK than they are here. So is Kerrygold butter. I've only seen salted in Ireland (a friend of mine and her family are from and live in Ireland), but it's only 2% sodium there and tastes vastly different.

Irish cheese and Irish artisan chocolates are two of my favorite things there. Will you be in Dublin? There's a wonderful chocolate shop there that I can't stay away from. I can't remember the name offhand, but I can get it from Dervil if you'll be there.
Micki B. May 16, 2016
Thanks Susan! I'll be in Dublin, Galway, and Kenmare. I'd love to check out a wonderful chocolate shop!
702551 May 15, 2016
For sure, big corporations formulate their products by region so it's unsurprising that Cadbury chocolate made for Europe tastes different than that made for the North American market.

That said, is the European Cadbury product that much better than the US stuff? The former is often available at boutique candy stores here Stateside.

Personally, I'm more interested in stuff that is not readily available in the USA. Rather than a regional item of an international brand that is slightly better than the USA version, I think it's more interesting to buy something that is unique.

What's better? Paying 4 euros for a slightly better version of Cadbury chocolate than the $3 Cadbury stuff stateside or paying 6-7 euros for something that is vastly better for a local sweet that you can't find fresh in the USA?

Your call.

Anyhow, enjoy your trip and safe travels.
Micki B. May 15, 2016
Hi cv! Personally, I do think it's vastly better. That's neither here nor there though, it certainly isn't THE thing I'm looking to bring home from Scotland, it just happens to be something I like, so I'll bring a bar or two back. That's also only one thing on the list of items I mentioned, most of which I think are more particular to Scotland. Those are the items I'm truly interested to hear more about, the local specialties, which is why I posted here.
702551 May 15, 2016
While I've never been to Scotland myself, I'd focus on alcohol, pork and dairy (knowing that the latter might be confiscated by US Customs and Border Patrol). I enrolled in the Global Entry program a couple of years ago, the CBP agents' eyes just glaze over and wave me through.

Personally, I'd ask a local or two what they think is a worthwhile representation of Scotland rather than a Yank saying "you need to bring this back" (like UK-produced Cadbury).

Anyhow, enjoy your trip.
Liz D. May 15, 2016
Walker's shortbread from the bakery in Aberlour in Scotland--you can buy the regular packages, but they also had a shelf of bags of little star-shaped pieces of shortbread, probably cut from scrap, but the price was way lower, and they were just as good! This was about 6 year ago....
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