Dublin’s food ‘scene’ is impressive but it’s not because the Irish are world renown for their food; it’s because Dublin has become an international European city that is continuing to draw talent and innovation from around the globe and so its food had better impress to keep folks there…..and, it does.
It’s not just the quality of the food itself, but the fact that many of the restaurants incorporate some of Ireland’s local favorites but in a creative cosmopolitan way. Secondly, there’s the ambiance – there were so many places not on my ‘recommended dining list’ I was drawn into because of the perceived ambiance from the street alone. And so I ventured into many of them, okay, nearly all of them.
Fallon & Bryne combines an organic, healthy food hall and restaurant all under one roof, the food hall downstairs as you enter from Exchequer Street. In the food hall, you can also find an array of wines, fresh breads, cheese and chocolates. Upstairs is a sit-down restaurant that is perfect for business lunches, since it is quiet and their waiters are attentive. (no wifi though, so make sure your demos and presentations are in cache :-)
A few things worth noting: the goat’s cheese and caramelized onion tart with rocket and balsamic reduction, the deep fried calamari with sweet chili sauce and the leek, blue cheese and walnut quiche served with mixed leaves and balsamic reduction. I’d give the Roast Butternut Squash and Rosemary Soup a miss since it lacked ‘bite’ and was a bit on the bland side.
Their salads are worth trying as are their pastas. €6 for a small salad and €10 for a large serving and they include: Fennel, beetroot & spinach salad, honey roast pecans with raspberry dressing (I got mine with chicken, see below), Caesar salad with bacon lardons & Parmesan cheese, Rocket, sun dried tomatoes & feta cheese, balsamic dressing and lastly, Portobello mushrooms, roast pumpkin, cherry tomato & red onion salad, coriander & lime dressing.
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