You've read me waxing lyrical about the wonders of Avoca. It's such a dream store. And they've launched e-Commerce! A little history: Avoca was started in 1723, a local mill in every sense: Grain-grinding, spinning and weaving. It evolved pretty much as one would expect - the blankets gained popularity among tourists and the Mill sprang off a tourist store, cafe etc.

Avoca (a town in Wicklow) was always a popular day-trip destination when I was young. Then, suddenly, they went retail. Stores opened in Dublin city centre, and Powerscourt, a beautiful estate in the Wicklow mountains. The products fought with the food for top spot, but thankfully there was room for both. Many of the woolen products hark back to the original business, but jewelry, toys, recipe books and pottery round out the selection to create a wonderful mini-department store.

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