The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - SEVEN DAYS | EATING OUT - 147 Par­nell Street, Dublin 1, 01-872 8481, face­book.com/ 147deli­par­nell ¤

147 DELI

For­get your soggy Spar sand­wich, for some real love in the soup- and-sambo field, you need a place like 147 Deli, where they take the lunchtime sta­ples very, very se­ri­ously. There isn’t a meat they won’t smoke, slow roast and cram into a sand­wich here (this week it was slow roasted beef top­side, pulled and served in a toasted whole­meal wrap with chipo­tle slaw and pineap­ple hot sauce, ¤6.50) Or a re­cent humdinger, a pimped-out ham & cheese (home smoked and shred­ded ham hock with gruyer, spring onion and mus­tard béchamel on toasted sour­dough, ¤6.50). Or the Reuben, which could very eas­ily pass it­self in Katz’s Deli in New York (not sure they’re as chilled about fak­ing or­gasms on Par­nell Street as they are on the Lower East Side though). Soups are hearty: think In­dian cauliflower and lentil or Mex­i­can pork & bean, (you can get a sambo and por­tion of soup for ¤7.50) and if you work in Dublin 1, they’ll even de­liver to your of­fice.


The Choco­late Fac­tory, 26 Kings Inn Street, Dublin 1 01-873 6022, blas­cafe.ie ¤ Based in the art gallery, event space and cre­ative com­mu­nity of The Choco­late Fac­tory, Blas Café is a new ven­ture in a gor­geous room on the ground floor of the build­ing. It’s all high ceil­ings, low hang­ing light­bulbs, art­work, com­mu­nal ta­bles and comfy chairs. For now it has a ba­sic menu: soup, sam­bos (two meaty, two veg­gie) and a hot dish. Sand­wiches come on fresh Tar­tine Bak­ery bread, and in­clude fill­ings such as ar­ti­choke with parme­san, grilled pep­pers and cour­gette (¤5.95) and chicken chipo­tle served with salad (¤6.95). There are im­pos­si­bly beau­ti­ful cakes from the Wild Flour Bak­ery and house­made le­mon slices. Hot dishes change all the time but you can ex­pect treats such as eggs Ber­ber with Mer­guez sausage and lots of warm­ing stews. It’s open from 8am on week­days, and you can get a pot of por­ridge for just ¤1, with top­pings of Greek yo­ghurt, rasp­berry coulis and gra­nola for an ex­tra 50c to ¤1.


26 Fitzwilliam Place, Dublin 2, 01 669 4600, brasseriele­pont.ie ¤¤¤ A lovely spot for a spe­cial oc­ca­sion, Brasserie Le Pont is in a great lo­ca­tion the cor­ner of Fitzwilliam Place, Leeson Street Bridge and Wil­ton Ter­race. Head chef James Doyle serves up clas­sic French cui­sine in this calm, un­der­stated din­ing room (it also has one of the loveli­est ter­races in Dublin). Ex­pect black sole me­u­niere style (fried and served in a brown but­ter sauce with le­mon), seared king scal­lops (¤27), an ex­cel­lent 8oz fil­let steak (¤33) and you can be sure duck will make an ap­pear­ance. Desserts are typ­i­cally French: crème brûlée, choco­late pots, French cheese. There’s a pre-the­atre menu (¤25 for 2 cour­ses, ¤29 for three) but lunch is your best bet to take ad­van­tage of that ter­race (the set lunch is the same price as the pre-the­atre menu).


52 Daw­son Street, Dublin, Dublin 2 01-6333 957, car­luc­cios.com/ restau­rants/dublin ¤ One of an in­ter­na­tional chain of Ital­ian restau­rants owned by Ital­ian-born, UK-based An­to­nio Car­luc­cio this bright blue cor­ner spot is loud and bustling from the get-go, with break­fast start­ing at 7.30am on week­days and 9am on Sun­days. Try the large, sweet slices of toasted panet­tone, the ir­re­sistible Ital­ian fruit bread (¤3.95), or you can join lunchtime rush clam­ber­ing for take aways from the gro­cery and deli at the front - we rec­om­mend the caponata, a dense, oily Si­cil­ian aubergine salad. For din­ner, the in­de­ci­sive will love the trio di pasta - where you can share your choice of three of the 12 pasta dishes on the menu for ¤27.95. The Gi­adriniera with cour­gette, chilli and fried spinach balls is good, and all pasta dishes are avail­able gluten-free.


15 Fade St, Dublin 2, 01-6718484, duck.ie € You know what you’re get­ting into in a place called Duck. No mess­ing. Just eat the duck. And so we did, in this lit­tle Hong Kong BBQ joint on Fade Street. The duck comes out of a “bul­let oven” , which roasts the hang­ing meat in such a way that leaves it juicy on the inside, with shiny crispy skin on the out­side. Roast duck, pork and chicken cooked in the bul­let with rice, noo­dles or veg­gies costs ¤6.95 or ¤8.95. Sides in­clude duck pan­cakes (¤4.95) and Hong Kong-style noo­dles (¤3.95). Or you can get large meat-only boxes (which we did) with tra­di­tional duck for ¤20/¤13, char siu pork (¤10), soy chicken (¤15) or crispy pork belly (¤10). The duck, chopped into chunks with a mas­sive cleaver, comes with hoi sin sauce (lots of condi­ments here, in­clud­ing plum, chilli oil, sweet chilli). On the night we ate here, the duck was too fatty with a lit­tle too much bone and gris­tle. The pork belly, how­ever was ex­cel­lent. The crispi­est crack­ling I’ve had, served with an in­tensely meaty broth for dip­ping. Per­haps they might con­sider a name change to Pig…


65 Dame Street, Dublin 2, 01 764-5722, face­book.com/ hailanko­rean ¤ We’ve been hear­ing good things about this Dame Street off­shoot of the Capel Street Korean restau­rant of the same name and fi­nally made it there last week­end. De­spite the foul weather out­side, there was a queue out the door, and with good rea­son. We had a very good bibim­bap (a Korean favourite of rice served in a stoneware bowl with vegetables, fried beef, a soft fried egg and a pot of gochu­jang chili pep­per paste to sea­son it, ¤9.90). Dumplings come in fives and 10s and can be steamed or pan-fried - the cour­gette and prawn (¤9.90) were the tasti­est of the ones we tried. The hit of the evening was a siz­zling dish of fried pork and kim­chi, the Korean na­tional dish of fer­mented cab­bage (¤12.50). The spicy, wafer thin strips of pork were of the “so good I don’t mind burn­ing my tongue” va­ri­ety. Por­tions are large, staff are un­fail­ingly friendly - a real gem. Book ahead.


Mil­len­nium Tower, Char­lotte Quay, Dublin 2 01-668 8862, mour­ne­seafood.com ¤¤ This is the lat­est in the sta­ble of Mourne restau­rants (there’s one in Belfast, one in Dun­drum, Co Down). They source all their shell­fish from their own beds at Car­ling­ford Lough, Co Down, so oys­ters and mus­sels fea­ture heav­ily on the menu. A great lo­ca­tion, over­look­ing Grand Canal Dock - it was stand­ing room only on the ter­race when the bar opened this sum­mer, but the win­ter chill has helped to calm things a bit. It’s split into a bar area and more for­mal restau­rant area, staff are re­ally friendly, if a bit busy. It’s the kind of place where it’s nicer to or­der lots of small plates than a main (just watch the bill). The chow­der is creamy, but not too heavy (¤4.50 a cup, ¤7 for a bowl with bread). The Thai style oys­ters (with pick­led ginger, cu­cum­ber, chilli and lime, ¤12) are de­li­cious, as is the crunchy salt and chilli squid with nappa slaw and chilli jam (¤9) and spicy pil pil prawns (¤9). The must-try dish of the evening for us was the Tus­can fries (¤4) - a fin­ger-lick­ing combo of skin-on chips, diced olives, pars­ley and loads of parme­san… ridicu­lously good.


At Ho­barts Cafe, 55 Ranelagh Road , Dublin 6, tel: 085-1027273, saltlick­dublin.tum­blr.com, ¤¤ Op­er­at­ing just two evenings a week, Salt Lick takes over the premises of Ho­barts Café in Ranelagh ev­ery Fri­day and Satur­day evening. Chefs Brian McCarthy and Wil­liam Toft serve a ta­ble d’hote menu (two cour­ses: ¤30, three cour­ses: ¤35 and sides are an ex­tra ¤3.50), which changes each month, ac­cord­ing to a theme. They’ve cov­ered Ja­panese month, Diner month, and even tea and toast month - but not your usual Lyons and Bren­nan’s con­coc­tion - think clams on toast and camomile tea-based cock­tails. Their next menu is Christ­mas themed and in­cludes griddled root veg, mack­erel with beets and horse­rad­ish, wood pi­geon with creamed Brussels sprouts (yum), pheas­ant with pis­ta­chio and mince meat frit­ters. It’s BYOB and BYOC (bring your own cock­tail) so lo­cal off-li­cence Red­monds pairs wines and beers with each month’s menu, or bring your own spir­its and the Salt Lick team will whip you up some fab­u­lous con­coc­tions.


9 Ex­che­quer St, Dublin 2, 01 633 4071, ukiy­o­bar.com ¤¤ A re­ally good meal can make you want to sing, and if you’re the en­er­getic sort, dance. In Ukiyo on Ex­che­quer St they ex­pect you to do both, what­ever you think of your din­ner. This restau­rant cum karaoke bar cum late night dance hive serves up Asian

fu­sion dishes, cock­tails and beers in its restau­rant and bar. After hours, they push back ta­bles and chairs back and the dancers take over. Or you can head down­stairs to the popular karaoke booths and war­ble away to your heart’s con­tent. The siz­zling bul­gogi beef strips (¤20) with all the Korean trim­mings (let­tuce, pick­les, gochu­jang sauce and chilli) are great. Lunch spe­cials are good value: the bento has three dishes plus rice, salad and miso for ¤10; the Korean/ Mex­i­can bur­ri­tos in­clude steak with egg and pulled pork with nutty azuki beans (¤6.50).

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