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A Taste of Christmas Past

by Guest Writer

Christmas at Ireland House Museum has always been a magical time of year. Victorian themed decorations adorn the halls and rooms, stockings hang by the fireplace, and the historic house is filled with the delicious smell of gingerbread cookies cooked on the hearth.

Historically, Christmas at Ireland House was always about cherishing family and friends. Food would have been an essential part of any family gathering over the years; Marie Ireland Bush, who owned the house until she passed away in 1985, often held great gatherings in celebration of the holiday season, filling the house with people, food and plenty of festive wassail to drink and be merry.

Ireland House Museum brings back that holiday magic with its annual A Taste of Christmas Past. This adult inspired licensed event celebrates Christmas in a similar fashion, with plenty of food samples made using recipes from the past and a variety of festive alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, all of which are served throughout the historic home. Classic favourites, such as figgy pudding and chestnuts roasting over an open fire, are served along with seasonal comforts like parsnip soup and crumpets with jam. Festive wassail, mulled wine, and shrub, an old recipe with orange juice and brandy, are also served; this year we welcome The Highlander Brew Company who will be on site offering samples of their popular Blacksmith Smoked Porter.

A Taste of Christmas - chesnuts










Throughout the evening, guests will also enjoy live musical entertainment, as pub carollers and musicians sing and play festive seasonal tunes. Santa Claus will be making a visit; guests can have a drink and take their photo with Santa as part of the fun! Members from the Burlington Guild of Wood Carvers and Sculptures will create holiday inspired carvings, and guests can make heritage crafts as keepsakes or gifts with Bradbury Estate Realty Inc.

A Taste of Christmas - fire










A Taste of Christmas - stout










Anyone still looking for that perfect gift will find inspiration in our Gift Shop, with shelves lined with beautiful Jim Shore collectibles, or in our silent auction, which has dining packages, great gift baskets, and gift certificates to wineries and hair salons. Don’t miss our featured item: a Toronto Maple Leafs hockey stick signed by #42 Tyler Bozak!

A Taste of Christmas - hockey










With limited tickets available, the evening is the perfect setting for work groups, organizations and gatherings of friends to come together and celebrate the season in a unique festive atmosphere.

A Taste of Christmas Past takes place on Friday, December 5 from 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tickets are $25 per person and includes all food, beverages and activities, with additional alcoholic beverages available for sale. Ireland House Museum is located at 2168 Guelph Line, Burlington. Visit our website for more information:; find us on Facebook: Museums of Burlington; or follow us on Twitter!

A Taste of Christmas - postcard










Guest Writer, Brianne Crites, Acting Community Curator, Museums of Burlington


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