6 Restaurants That Prove Dublin Is a City Fit for Foodies
Dublin is a city full of colorful doors and Guinness pints, but people don’t usually think of chic dining as they would when planning a visit to Paris or Rome. Although Ireland’s capital may not have a global reputation for excellent restaurants, it should because it is filled with culinary treasures fit for foodies. To prove it, here are six restaurants that offer delicious food, unique cocktails, and impeccable ambiance.
The newly re-designed Café en Seine is a hotspot known for its five-star service and alluring atmosphere. This stunning restaurant is filled with Art Deco décor, from the geometric floors to metallic accents at the bar, and transports you to another era. A variety of spaces like the Parisian garden or the many glitzy bars cater to different experiences, but you’ll be in awe wherever you decide to sit. Enjoy a delectable cocktail after a day of wandering through the city’s storied streets and make sure to pour over the menu, conceived by head chef Stephen Gibson. It is full of rich, seasonal dishes to indulge in, made with sustainably sourced ingredients.
The term “hidden gem” is taken literally at The Blind Pig, a romantic speakeasy below the Italian restaurant, Pacino’s. After making a reservation, you will be emailed the elusive directions for how to find it, which involves pushing buttons and opening secret doors, so the fun starts far before your first bite. This cave-like spot serves delicious Italian fare and cocktails so thoughtfully made that the menu requests patience, but these libations are worth the wait. Peek at the bar to see bartenders working with fire and grinding herbs before a beautiful glass is placed in front of you as if by magic.
Travellers who can’t trek to India for the bright cuisine may find London to be the next-best option, but Dublin also brings the heat. Kathmandu Kitchen near Temple Bar is a small spot in high demand for its Indian and Nepalese delicacies. Well-known curries like madras and tikka masala are executed perfectly and complemented by Nepalese dishes you may never have happened upon, such as Thakali Tarkari and Himalayan curry. A wonderful pick for foodie’s who don’t mind sticking to beer or wine, this restaurant doesn’t get distracted by mixology or flashy cocktails and instead lets the food shine.
Sister to the famous London restaurant called The Ivy, West Street, this Dublin brasserie is unparalleled in design. The colorful and eclectic aesthetic is an Instagram dream, and while that may be what gets people in the door, the outstanding menu gets them to stay. Offering everything from tempura prawns to Shepherd’s pie to crispy polenta cakes, this beautiful restaurant is perfect for the most casual or special of occasions. If you only have an hour in your sightseeing schedule, stop in for a traditional afternoon tea to revive you before your next tour. But be warned, this show-stopping spot is highly desired, so make a reservation if you don’t want to risk missing out.
Known for its zesty Gin drinks and mouth-watering tapas, The Port House a charming restaurant you don’t want to miss. The intimate and cozy atmosphere is a result of layered details like hanging tables, candles lit all around the stone room, and displayed vintage wine bottles. You can’t go wrong with any of the Spanish dishes on the massive menu, and since it is a tapas spot, you might as well try as many as you can. Sipping on flavorful cocktails and passing delightful clay plates to friends across the table, it feels like all problems or worries melt away. The food comes out fairly quickly so you can start with a conservative order then get more once you’ve mastered the menu.
This Michelin-star restaurant puts a modern twist on classic Irish fare, producing plates that look like art and taste like euphoria. Dishes are packed with flavor while showcasing Ireland’s local produce in new and unique ways. Smoked eel and rehydrated Braeburn apples are just a few menu descriptions that catch the eye, and with a Michelin star to maintain, chef Ross Lewis is always pushing the envelope of what Irish cuisine can be. To match the modern take on food, the restaurant’s design is minimalist and elegant with clean lines, white tablecloths, and a dark color palette. Large artwork hangs on the walls to add warmth to the spaces. Chapter One is far different than the Irish pubs you’ll pass by day after day and offers a luxurious experience you won’t soon forget.