A se­lec­tion of the best restau­rants as cho­sen by Rachel Collins

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - SEVEN DAYS | EATING OUT - rcollins@irish­times.com Twit­ter: @or­rcollins huevos rancheros, fri­joles char­ros kaarage


18 Chancery Street, Dublin 7, kchidomex­ico.com ¤ Pup­pies aren’t just for Christ­mas, and bur­ri­tos aren’t just for din­ner – and you’ll soon see why on a visit to K Chido. Am­ble down be­hind the Four Courts (hope­fully you don’t have an ap­point­ment in­side) and you’ll find the pink and blue K Chido street­food truck in a laneway off Chancery Street, fac­ing Chancery Park and that gor­geous art-deco sin­gle­storey build­ing you’ve passed a mil­lion times and for­got to no­tice. Go on, look again. We di­gress – back to break­fast, or “bruncheria” if you’re eat­ing at the week­end. They may be serv­ing the best break­fast bur­ri­tos in town here – for a paltry fiver you can get a toasted tor­tilla wrap, strain­ing to hold the mounds of rice, salsa, beans, egg, chorizo or ba­con (or chorizo and ba­con!) with cheese (veg­gie ver­sion avail­able). A spicy kick­start to the day, bet­tered only by the

the sloppy, spicy Mex­i­can ver­sion of a fry up, with a cou­ple of soft corn tor­tillas hold­ing salsa, drunken beans, cheese, onion rel­ish, chorizo or ba­con and a pair of per­fectly fried eggs (¤7.95/ ¤9.45 with meat/ ¤10.45 with some ex­tra rice or pa­pas lo­cas). Break­fast with drunken beans and crazy fried pota­toes? Al­ways a hit.

If you come later in the day, try the (¤6) a stew made from but­ter­nut squash and mar­bled pinto beans, served with av­o­cado, sour cream and Mex­i­can rice, or the pulled pork tacos, with ridicu­lously tasty chipo­tle cit­rus pork in­side gluten-free tor­tillas, with sala, onion, av­o­cado, rice and re­fried beans (¤7). You can eat on the bright­est home­made fur­ni­ture in town – it helps that the laneway is a sun trap – or if the park is open across the road (8am to 4pm on week days, never on week­ends), head in and make a pic­nic of it.


185 Townsend Street, Dublin 2, 01-5570728 ¤ With seat­ing for just 15 peo­ple, this tiny new Ja­panese restau­rant has moved into a some­what doomed lo­ca­tion. This premises seems to change hands ev­ery other week, never with any suc­cess. KiRaudo seems dif­fer­ent though. A com­plete facelift, ex­cel­lent staff, and the abil­ity to eat in, in com­fort­able – if cosy – sur­round­ings all help to make this look like a place that will stick. They clev­erly launched with just two menu items, giv­ing them a chance to find their feet. There’s a regular bento and a veg­e­tar­ian ver­sion. Both are ¤8.99. Both boxes in­clude a bowl (or take away con­tainer) of good miso, some fried gy­oza, a cou­ple of pieces of nori­maki, a hot main dish and a sec­ondary meat dish or salad. Ky­oto ribs were a lit­tle too fatty but the spicy sauce is good. A chicken (tasty morsels fried til the bat­tered coat­ing is nicely crispy) is good, although strangely served on a salad with mus­tard dress­ing. Stir-fried veg­eta­bles are re­ally good – fresh and still crisp and full of bite. A Thai-style veg­etable dish is too bland. Bet­ter to stick with the Ja­panese favourites. A sushi menu is launched a cou­ple of days ago, and a full menu is due to start next week, to in­clude ra­men and tem­pura. As a nice touch, a green tea is given to ev­ery­one wait­ing for take-out, although we’re not sure how long that will last, con­sid­er­ing there was a queue to the door on our visit.


22 South Great Ge­orge’s Street, Dublin 2, 01-679 7821, face­book.com/ si­mon­splace­cafe ¤ A long­time favourite of mu­si­cians, stu­dents, ac­tors, artists, stall hold­ers from Ge­orge’s Street Ar­cade and (on this rare oc­ca­sion, the word is war­ranted) an eclec­tic bunch of loyal cus­tomers, Simon’s Place is a Dublin in­sti­tu­tion on the cor­ner of Ge­orge’s Street and the ar­cade. With large win­dows look­ing in on the cafe, its walls plas­tered with old gig posters, its wooden chairs and large communal ta­bles, there’s a great at­mos­phere and great mu­sic.

The menu is as con­sis­tent as the vibe – hon­est-to-good­ness doorstep sand­wiches, with old-school fill­ings, such as chicken, let­tuce, spring onions, tomato (¤4.90 eat in). Or for the same price, swap out the chicken for egg, or ham, or tuna or cheese. Sal­ads come in half por­tions (¤2.20) and three- and four-per-plate serv­ings (¤5.90, ¤7.50) or try the Gen­eral Veg­etable soup (¤4.50) – a hot bowl of good­ness that can help ban­ish the most stub­born of snif­fles. You’ll of­ten find gigs here in the evenings and you can ex­pect to queue at lunchtime. Make sure you leave room for one of the ridicu­lously good cin­na­mon buns (¤2.20).


46 Har­ring­ton Street, Dublin 8, 01-441 6596, sis­ter­sadie.ie ¤ The lit­tle sis­ter to the un­stop­pable Brother Hub­bard jug­ger­naut over on Capel Street, Sadie moved into the Har­ring­ton Street premises va­cated by Café Tiesan and quickly made it her own, with some great in­te­ri­ors by De­sign­goat. Open for break­fast from 7.45am, the el­der sib­ling’s in­flu­ence is ev­i­dent in the menu (they’ve nicked his Turk­ish eggs, for one), but Sadie stands on her own two feet and you can get some proper por­ridge (as op­posed to pri­son slop) that comes with ex­tras such as toasted seeds and crys­tallised gin­ger, cream and honey, or ap­ple, berry and sweet gera­nium com­pote (¤3.95).

There’s a daily warm salad for lunch (served with sour­dough and hum­mus, ¤9.95),such as chick­pea with roast but­ter­nut squash, chard and poached eggs. The lunch meal deal (¤9.95) is good value for the rav­en­ous, with a sambo, soup or salad box for main, with soup or salad for a side and a drink. There’s some se­ri­ously good co­conut and cit­rus cakes (¤3.60), or go full-glut­ton and try the hot choco­late, which is pre­sented in two jugs; pour choco­late ganache from one and choco­late milk from the other and mix to your heart’s de­sire. Week­end brunch is the time to linger over those Turk­ish eggs men­e­men (¤9.95), served from 10am to 4pm Satur­days and Sun­days.

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