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 new menu launched this week, and includes sushi, ramen, some fried soba dishes and a couple of curries. 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.
NCAD, 100 Thomas Street, Dublin 8, facebook.com/ luncheonettedublin ¤ Lunch in the DIT Aungier Street canteen in the 1990s usually involved cheap cups of tea, a couple of Marlboro Lights (sorry folks) and if we were feeling flush, a plate of chips and gravy. High times indeed. The students at NCAD have a much tastier option in Luncheonette – a vaulted basement café, run by artist Jennie Moran, whose light installations brighten the subterranean space. Along with Brazilian chef Wagner Dos Santos, Moran has created a cool little spot that still has the frantic starved-student mayhem during lunch hours, but is a relaxing spot in between (non students are welcome). Open from 8.30am on weekdays for breakfast (it closes at 3.45pm) the menu The annual St Patrick’s Day (Weekend? Week?) festivities grind into gear tomorrow morning. We know the man himself wasn’t big on snakes or slavery, but we have it on good authority he had a healthy appetite, so we’ve found some food-related events this weekend to remember him in style.
In Dublin, the St Patrick’s Festival has turned into a huge international affair with hundreds of events from 9am tomorrow morning. the monthly exploration of the role of food in our history, culture and society, decamps from its home in the United Arts Club to take over the old brewers’ dining hall in the Guinness Storehouse tomorrow night. A three-course menu from Justin O’Connor will include Carlingford oysters, baby gem with Clonakilty black pudding and Ardsallagh goats cheese, Slaney Valley Lamb with barley risotto and poached North Atlantic Hake. Culinary historian
will discuss Irish cuisine and how it has shaped us as a people, followed by live musical performances. From 7.30pm to 10.30pm, tickets ¤65, including wine, from biabeatha.net
A one-day celebration isn’t enough in Cork city either, and as well as the parade on Tuesday, there’s live music all weekend on Patrick’s Street and the
Máirtín Mac Con Iomaire
changes daily, but stalwarts include pound cake (it’s a tangy lemon and thyme at the moment, ¤2), a good serving of porridge with cream, roasted hazelnuts and honey (¤2) and “complicated flapjacks” (¤1.70).
Lunchtime offerings generally include a couple of sambos and a soup or salad. They’re student-friendly in budget, but a million miles from chips and gravy. There are some really interesting flavours and ideas; Azerbaijani spinach and split pea soup with pomegranate and bulgar, ¤3 (college-going Rachel would
will take over a number of city pubs every evening. Food is featuring high on the agenda too, with many restaurants serving a special Irish dish during the festival (see corkstpatrickfestival.ie). on Caroline Street (idahocafe.ie) is showcasing Frank Hederman’s delicious smoked salmon, with crushed potatoes, Ardsallagh goats cheese and a green (but of course) leaf salad, ¤12; the
on South Mall (electriccork.com) is serving up oysters (3 for ¤6, 6 for ¤12, 12 for ¤24) with Guinness to mark the day, or you can take part in the a walking tour of the city’s markets, bakers and fish, meat and cheesemongers with lots of tastings along the way. There’s a trail tomorrow, departing from Grand Parade at 10.30am, ¤55 per person, book at fabfoodtrails.ie You can’t get more Irish than
which runs from tomorrow until the 17th. Gigs, workshops, dancing, family events and ceilis take over the city for the festival, with all events on the
free of charge (so expect a tight squeeze). Watch out for
and Soundings: Holy Trinity show in the Long Gallery of Kilkenny Castle at 4.30pm on Sunday, with three musical guests who will perform and tell stories. Afterwards, pop across the road to restaurant, in the 16th-century castle stables, for a three-course meal followed by a concert from (Éilís Kennedy and Pauline Scanlon).
Fish Bar at the
Fab Food Trail,
Dylan Lisa Hannigan’s
have recognised about two of those ingredients), roast free-range chicken ciabatta (¤4) or a decently sized portion of spiced brown rice and mung bean salad thinly sliced radish, pistachio and coriander (¤3.50). A lovely, friendly lunchtime spot that could teach other college canteens a thing or two.
162 Parnell Street, Dublin 1, 01-8783165, phoviet.ie € A small Vietnamese restaurant on Parnell Street , this place specialises in pho – a popular
Sittings for dinner at 6.15pm or 7pm (the table is yours for the evening) and the menu from Kathleen Moran’s team will include prawn and crabmeat with lime, apple & pecan salad on sourdough, and Paddy White’s beef short rib with carrot & parsnip puree, onion tart, champ & wild mushroom sauce. Tickets ¤45 per person, from email@example.com.
Galway’s festivities are centred around the city’s creative community, with lots of input from local cultural groups.
which preserves the city’s maritime heritage, will have a 21ft Galway Hooker on display in Eyre Square for local buskers to perform on. Keep the hunger for creativity alive with some local fish tacos in
(36 Upper Abbeygate St, electricgalway.com/biteclub) which is open from 6pm Thurs-Sat, and 2pm on Sunday. This “streetfood discotheque” is in the newly revamped a hub for creative types, and the top floor eatery blends really good food (a mishmash of Middle Eastern, Mexican and more) with excellent music and cocktails – see panel (right) for their Pomegranate and Sumac Sour. On the menu, you can expect those delicious tacos (¤8.50) with fish of the day, orange pico de gallo, chipotle crema on soft tacos; or try a bucket of crispy fried chicken, served with a side of chunky slaw (¤9). There’s an all-day party on the 17th with margarita slushies to celebrate (well, they are green).
street food consisting of a light broth, rice noodles, chicken or beef (though you can often get vegetarian and seafood options), with vegetables. The pho offerings at Pho Viet share the same light stock, and you add beef (¤8.50), chicken (¤8.50) or prawns (¤10.50). The beef is a hearty option, with a choice of four cuts of meat (you choose three, or all four for an extra ¤1). They include slices of brisket, rare sirloin steak, flank steak or meat balls. The meat balls are small, dense and firm, nothing like their Italian namesake, while
Bádóirí an Cladaig
– Rachel Collins
the brisket has been slow roasted and is melt-in-themouth. The flank can be tough, but the sirloin is a good option. Each bowl comes with a plate of extras, such as mint leaves, lemon wedges, extra chillis, bean sprouts and coriander, and you mix until you’ve found the taste that suits you best. Banh Cuon (¤7.50) a Vietnamese pancake made with rice flour is filled with prawn, pork and mushrooms and then fried like a crepe. For a burst of fresh, crunchy goodness, try the Goi cuon (¤4 for two) a healthier version of spring rolls, transparent rice paper roll served cold stuffed with chilled prawn, pork, vermicelli noodles, mint and veggies and served with a tangy dipping sauce. The chicken wings (¤7) are potent and very tasty – a liberal dose of tamarind in the sauce sets them apart from the better known American chicken wings.
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.