The buzz is that the restaurant scene in Dublin has never been as good. With the rise of Instagram and travel, a new wave of restaurant owners are combining the need for on-trend dining, new ingredients and new ways of cooking, with local, Irish ingredients and down-to-earth customer service.
Whether you are looking for a taster menu or some good food to accompany your pint of Guinness, why not check out our favourites?
Where to eat in Dublin if you love fine wine
It’s not all about Guinness in Dublin! If you love good wine then you must pay a visit to Fallon & Byrne. A wine lover’s dream, you can go down to the magnificent wine cellar where you can choose what wine to pair with your food. There are more than 600 wines to choose from.
Upstairs there is a sunlit dining room where you can choose from a seasonal menu with tempting morsels such as seared Irish scallops or aged Irish beef finished with a retro Knickerbocker Glory.
Where to eat in Dublin if you love books
The Winding Stair offers old-fashioned Irish food in a rather special setting. An 18th Century staircase wraps its way around three floors, with each floor featuring bookcases packed with old books. Classical music plays while you eat.
The food tastes as good as it looks, but don’t expect an oversized white plate with tiny morsels in a sculptural design dotted with jus here – the food is hearty and homely.
Despite the extraordinary food, this restaurant is down-to-earth and friendly, offering a haven away from the bustling streets or changeable Irish weather. The fact that they call the food ‘homemade grub’ says it all – but it’s doubtful that anyone could make such impressive food at home.
On the ground floor you’ll find a beautiful independent bookshop – one of the oldest surviving independent bookshops in Dublin.
Where to eat in Dublin if you have a sweet tooth
There are so many superb restaurants to try in Dublin, the problem is which one to choose – particularly if you are in a group with various preferences. Let’s face it, too many great places to eat is a rather wonderful problem to have.
Long gone are the days of deliberating over what type of food to eat on a Saturday night in Dublin – COSMO Dublin has it all.
Not only can you eat Italian, Indian, Chinese or Japanese from an all-you-can-eat buffet at COSMO Dublin, you can also choose from a whole menu of desserts.
You can try small squares of puddings from a large selection of chocolate cake, cheesecakes and gateaux and if you have a really sweet tooth head to the chocolate fountain, then choose a few pick and mix sweets.
Where to eat in Dublin for fresh seafood
Cavistons is famously one the best seafood restaurants in Dublin, the perfect place to take shelter from the bracing wind on the Dún Laoghaire seafront.
Cavistons have 50 years of experience in the seafood business. The chef Noel Cusack chooses the menu twice weekly, but examples include baked Kilmore hake or roast monkfish fillet.
The Food Emporium next door is particularly well-regarded for its Irish smoked salmon and offer next day salmon delivery service so you can deliver a treat to friends in Europe and other countries.
Where to eat in Dublin for a special occasion
The Mulberry Garden is situated in the grounds of an old cottage dating from 1911. This restaurant really immerses you in all things Irish – from Irish cutlery, linen, bread boards, and paintings to Irish wool on the walls and soap in the bathroom. The ingredients on the menu are of course all Irish.
The menus change every week, however, the tasting menu might include starters such as Wicklow Quail – courgette soup, apple, Hegarty’s cheddar and summer truffle – or a main such as braised lamb neck and sweetbread.
This may be fine dining, but this restaurant doesn’t take itself too seriously. This is casual fine dining at its best and is ideal for a special birthday treat or a wedding anniversary.
Where to eat in Dublin if you are looking for good ‘craic’
If Irish music is high on your dining adenda when visiting Dublin then head to Darkey Kelly’s bar to enjoy the ‘craic’ every weekend.
From a Dublin Mountain burger to homemade seafood chowder and generous fish and chips, the menu even pairs the food with Irish craft beer.
There are also around 50 Irish whiskeys to enjoy as an aperitif or nightcap.
Where to eat in Dublin for an environmentally friendly meal
The lunchtime queues at Tang reflect the popularity of this tiny eco-conscious eatery. Their main aim is for happy, well-fed customers, but second to that is to make as little impact on the environment as possible and to encourage others to do the same.
Their biggest speciality are the salads – bright, colourful, flavoursome and surprisingly filling, especially with a Middle Eastern flatbread alongside. They offer these in salad boxes to go, which is handy as seating is limited. You can also opt for a rustic soup in winter.
Where to eat in Dublin for Michelin starred elegance
The Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud is the only restaurant in Ireland with two Michelin stars and people flock from all over the world to visit.
The menu offers dishes such as ravioli of blue lobster with lobster coconut cream, toasted almond, and split curry dressing, alongside lacquered Skeaghanore duck and desserts such as Opalys chocolate and tropical fruit ‘cocoon’, pina colada sorbet with coconut tapioca.
Every dish is bursting with exciting flavours.