Over at Le Bon Crubeen, diners can recline amid the darkened wood décor, elegant armchairs and warm candlelight, happily confident that the chefs will prepare a delightful dinner remembered for all the right reasons. The selection of French fashioned cuisine is composed of steaks and ribs where the meat drops off the bone, vegetables at the precisely correct juncture between crunchy and tender, and potatoes baked, mashed or grilled to delectable perfection. Regional favourites, like duck’s liver parfait, also prove popular. Beverages too, from the superb selection of white and red wines to the local Irish whiskies and spirits, embody fine choice.
Ideally situated within walking distance of Dublin’s city centre and nightlife, Le Bon Crubeen shines for its impeccably talented staff who often feature in diner testimonials. Engaged but unobtrusive, prompt but courteous, the waiters here attract praise while the reasonable prices – ranging to a mere 25 euros a head for three courses – keep the place popular and vibrant every day of the week.
At O’Neill’s Bar and Restaurant in Dublin, outstanding food meets fantastic ambiance, while tradition meets modernity in a way that somehow just works. Not to be confused with the O’Neill’s pub chain, this venue offers delicious fresh oyster plates, and entire platters of snack bites, which are commonly shared by diners in the midst of conversational hubbub. While popular for its lunchtime sandwiches and wraps, evenings are when O’Neill’s really shines – waiting staff zip about the premises as real traditional live entertainment regales patrons, ferrying fish and chips, Irish steaks, bacon collars and turkey breasts to eager diners.
A common place for pub crawls to commence, O’Neill’s has accumulated a substantial level of renown for its great location just near Temple Bar. The drinks list is as encompassing as we’d expect, with Guinness ever-popular alongside other local ales and whiskies. Sporting fans meanwhile will enjoy taking in the latest game on the venue’s thirteen big screen TVs, while true tipple enthusiasts will love to peruse the bar’s ‘whisky corner’ which features fine spirits plus all kinds of memorabilia.
Keshk Café serves Mediterranean cuisine imbued at every turn with fabulously tasteful twists upon a template stalwart and traditional. This popular venue almost always requires advance booking, its chefs having long since gained renown and acclaim from diners seeking the tastiest food in a great atmosphere. Notes of Egyptian and Turkish culture confer extra pizazz to a menu which includes falafel, moussaka, kafka and the ever-special keshk chicken, with its filo pastry and exquisitely rich sauce.
Exceptionally attentive service and the same, passionate staff keep people returning to Keshk Café time after time. One huge perk for fans of cuisine from the Med is the fact that diners can bring and enjoy their own wines with a meal with no charge for corking. Pudding wise, guests may again bring their own for a small plating fee, or opt for the baklava which has itself become a perennial favourite, sensuously cooked with divine syrup and a delicate drizzle of honey.
Las Tapas de Lola takes the favourites of Spain, from chorizo and Iberico meats to the Spanish omelette, to the streets of Dublin. Lovingly prepared in the same manner as a proper homemade Spanish tapas bar, this eatery melds Mediterranean traditions with the unrivalled quality of local Irish meats, seafood and veggie produce. Remixing favourites such as oysters, clams and prawns in the style of Spain is the essence of what this venue does with aplomb.
The atmosphere perfectly melds together the feel of a good Irish eatery with the essence of Spain, with rows of tables and walls graced with photographs depicting both Dublin and Spain’s respective yesteryears. Serving staff are courteous and unobtrusive, and are happy to recommend a bottle from Las Tapas de Lola wine menu. Gaining in popularity with group bookings for its sharing friendly menu and convivial, fun atmosphere close to the verve of Dublin’s city centre, this tapas bar is one you’ll not regret dining in.
La Mere Zou brings the classy cuisine of France to the world class destination that is Dublin in a marriage which has proven sublime. The tenderness of Irish beef steaks and farm grown vegetables combines into a delectable choice of dishes certain to please even the choosiest palates. Served in an atmosphere of class, with warm illumination both natural and lamp lit, the décor has been incrementally refined – having clocked up over 20 years serving Dublin’s locals and tourists, you’re in good hands.
Fine dining in La Mere Zou is easy for its supreme location adjacent to St. Stephens Green. Whether you treat the venue as a perfect staging ground for further evening enjoyment in Temple Bar, or simply as a place to while away hours relaxing over drinks, this eatery encapsulates great hospitality whatever your night’s preference. With its splendid wines menu, polite serving staff, and fabulous selection of cakes and tarts to finish, you can dine confident you chose a cracker of a place.
Update: In early 2016, La Mere Zou promptly closed owing creditors roughly €145,000, bringing to a close the tenure of one of Dublin’s best-loved French restaurants.
Those hunting for a memorable meal in Dublin won’t be dismayed by the Koh Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge, which lavishes the best of Thai cuisine upon every visitor. There’s a palpable fizz and cheer in the air for a good reason; the cocktails served at Koh have gained a reputation all their own for the sweet vibrancy with which they grace the palette, while those wanting wine or beer will likewise be pleased by the bar’s illustrious selection.
The Koh’s menu is diverse and tantalizing, the meals offered sourced unequivocally from Thailand’s pantheon of gourmet delights. The less daring will be pleased to find Asian favourites such as Peking duck and Thai green curry occupying prominent place, while the adventurous will find meals like Phad Kee Mua Nua – sliced beef with egg noodles and Oriental veggies – satisfying their desire for exotic tastes. Throughout the experience, the superior staff will see you waited on hand and foot as you relax in the snazzy, colourfully lit surrounds.
IL Vicoletto epitomizes world class cuisine, bringing as it does the delights of Italy to Dublin, ready to be savoured by locals and tourists alike. Amazing, timeless starters like baked aubergine in a seasoned tomato sauce, main dishes such as seafood pasta and risotto with superb Barbera d’Asti wine sauce populate the menu. Unforgettable sweets meanwhile are a la carte from the chef’s own tiramisu to the slow-cooked panna cotta cream have guests licking their lips in anticipation.
The wine selection is formidable, with bottles of old and recent vintages gracing the wall space in compliment to the overall décor. Being as the restaurant is right in the heart of Temple Bar, its use as a staging ground for a night out to remember, or as a final farewell to Dublin and its many beautiful sights, is frequent; reminders of the hospitality that make the city such a destination abound here, while the atmosphere is classy but never to the point of cloying.
Sizzling meat and real good hospitality meld in the Whitefriar Grill, with patrons pointing to its crispy and succulent local meat selection, served by those truly passionate about cooking top notch meats. Of particular note are the Sunday meat platters, where ribs, rump steaks and cutlets in an explosion of protein-stocked meaty finesse. Purposely selected wines that compliment and make poignant the delicious cuts, and a chef who’ll prepare everything exactly to specification round out this superb venue.
The kitchen is in full view of the dining area, meaning guests can watch all manner of cooking, from flame grilling to gentle frying. Another popular draw is the venue’s egg-intensive brunches, with the lobster hash and gambas benedict savoured. Group bookings are available any day or time, and provisions are aptly made for big personal or business orientated occasions. Continuing to sightsee, or walking onward to Temple Bar or another venue, is simple given Whitefriar’s perfect situation between Trinity College, just northwest of St. Stephen’s Green.
Those opting to dine in Dublin’s Trocadero discover a gourmet selection immense enough to satisfy any palette. Located near St. Andrews Church close by Trinity College, this gorgeous eatery has been serving superb meals since the 1950s. Eager to hang on to its glorious heritage, the opulent décor mirrors its early past, while the sensitive and attentive waiting staff instruct the chefs to cook whatever steak, fish or vegetable dish you order exactly as you want it.
Something of a treasured novelty, the Trocadero’s late art deco aesthetic sees the venue bordered with photographs of the many figures in Irish showbiz who’ve dined there over the decades. The reclined comfy seats make it a perfect relaxation spot, with many guests opting for one of the Troc’s classic cocktails mixed at the glitzy bar. The food meanwhile includes local fresh caught bass and sole, succulent Wicklow lamb, and the venue’s very own chargrilled Angus steaks. With a natural ease and chilled ambiance, this historic venue subtly confers a comfy, homely feel.
When you go to Toscana Restaurant in Dublin, you’ll be enveloped by the gorgeous, buzzing atmosphere and devotedly authentic Italian cuisine populating the menu. The venue has been lauded for its ‘grow your own’ philosophy; meals are cooked with organically grown vegetables from the eatery’s own Wicklow-based farm. As such, the sauces, salads and consistency of every meal ordered has that bit of extra pizazz only natural, untreated veg can bring.
An impeccable range of antipasti get your dinner off to a fine start, while to follow diners choose from a selection of meat and fish dishes,. Or, alternatively, a gourmet pizza or pasta favourite such as lasagne or linguine, which altogether round off the savoury experience. Sweets include homemade panna cotta, an excellent rendition of tiramisu, and top notch profiteroles. The drinks menu meanwhile features a glittering selection of Italian and continental wines, while those wanting a bit more exoticism will be pleased by the presence of Mojito and Cosmopolitan cocktails.