CLARE DONE­GAL DUBLIN

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - THE TICKET/SEVEN DAYS - Car­ri­ga­holt, Co Clare 00-789432 LM 8 Dunville Ter­race, Canal Road,

warm ba­nana flat­bread with a creamy lime zest fill­ing (¤4.50) and the Break­fast Moglai – a crispy dough­bread stuffed with ba­con, egg, cheese and co­rian­der (¤6.50). For lunch, go for the Manoushi, a Le­banese flat bread filled meat and cheese (¤8.90) or for a salad of pearl cous­cous with ca­pers, cu­cum­ber, pomegranate and pars­ley (¤7). The sweet treats are plen­ti­ful; we’ll be back for their cour­gette cake (¤4.25) and their rose­wa­ter and pis­ta­chio meringue (¤4.50).

Night­time sees the Kitchen tak­ing over, and the Mid­dle Eastern in­flu­ence is strong in this menu too. It’s ca­sual – the menu isn’t di­vided into starters or mains and shar­ing is en­cour­aged. There are plenty of smaller dishes at around ¤8, such as Moroc­can spiced beef pat­ties (¤8), and bulgar wheat and chick­pea falafel (¤8.50).

There are more baked goods from Le­banon, this time in the form of Sfee­has, de­li­cious mini pies that are also stuffed with meat (¤8). They’re served at Orso with a crispy kale and a creamy dip. The menu holds a cou­ple of larg­ers plates for the heftier ap­petite, in­clud­ing a slow cooked lamb tagine (¤18.50) or a sea­sonal game pie with their own Orso spiced pota­toes (¤17). There’s a small but well-se­lected choice of craft beer and cock­tails, and ser­vice is fast and friendly. They also host regular barista classes, led by their “pro­fes­sional cof­fee mas­ter” Yuliyan. The next classes are on May 10th and May 25th, and they’re open to peo­ple who want to up­scale their hos­pi­tal­ity skills or just those who re­ally loves cof­fee and wants to find out more about brew­ing.

THE LONG DOCK

The Long Dock is a gem at the heart of Loop Head and the per­fect stop­ping-off point en route to climb the light­house over Clare’s spec­tac­u­lar cliffs. As you’d hope in this part of the world (but not al­ways find), the seafood se­lec­tion is spec­tac­u­lar.

One a re­cent visit we got stuck into a mas­sive bowl of mussels in a de­li­cious wine and gar­lic sauce (¤9.95); great, meaty crab claws (¤13.95); a surf and turf that de­liv­ered loads of flavour and great value at ¤19.95; and a rich, creamy seafood pie hid­ing be­neath a pil­lowy mash top (¤14.95).

The daily spe­cials are much more ad­ven­tur­ous than we were on this visit. The cosy bar set­ting and roar­ing fire was the per­fect an­ti­dote to one of those early sum­mer days that de­liv­ered all four sea­sons in one. This is one worth mak­ing a lengthy de­tour for.

HARRY’S RESTAU­RANT

Brid­gend, Inishowen, Co Done­gal, 074-9368544, bit.ly/Har­rysBarFace­book ¤¤ Have you ever heard of the kind of restau­rant that sits on a less than idyl­lic spot, per­haps next to a petrol sta­tion, but that food­ies fawn over? Have you ever heard of the kind of restau­rant that sits off the beaten track, per­haps next to a petrol sta­tion, that has food en­thu­si­asts clam­ber­ing into their cars to get to?

Harry’s is that kind of place. A to­tally unas­sum­ing lo­ca­tion gives away to a pas­sion­ate crowd of food lovers, whose main aim is to shout from the top of Malin Head about how great Inishowen pro­duce is, as well as cel­e­brat­ing other great Ir­ish pro­duc­ers. You can fol­low pro­pri­etor Donal (Harry’s son) on Twit­ter (@Har­rysDonal) and if you ask, he’ll tell you about their walled gar­den a few min­utes from the restau­rant where they grow much of the pro­duce for their kitchen. Check them out for lunch, early birds and evening meals. It’s a big place, with a large dining room with a good view of the kitchen pass, and an old-school fam­ily pub next door.

Sun­day lunch is hard to beat, three cour­ses costs ¤20.95. For that, you could find your­self en­joy­ing a walled gar­den onion tart with Coolea cheese, slices of roast Done­gal turkey and ham with but­tery onion and sage stuffing, fol­lowed by lemon pos­set with rhubarb. So, if you’re hun­gry when you ar­rive in Inishowen penin­sula, make sure you stop off at Harry’s to eat.

LOCK 6

Ranelagh, Dublin 6, 01-497 9337 ¤ This lit­tle cof­fee spot is named for its lo­ca­tion op­po­site lock num­ber six on the Grand Canal (you know the one, it fea­tures in ev­ery “it’s sunny in Dublin, look at all the peo­ple drink­ing out­side the Barge” pho­to­graph). It opens from 7am on week­days for cof­fee and break­fast. It’s a cool lit­tle hide­away, pro­tected from the pass­ing traf­fic by a stone and wire mesh wall with some in­ter­est­ing wooden out­door seat­ing for those bright sum­mer morn­ings. Break­fast of­fer­ings in­clude por­ridge with stewed rhubarb ¤4.50 or ba­con and eggs (¤4.50) with or with­out bread. Lo­cally roasted Ariosa cof­fee beans keep the baris­tas busy with pass­ing com­muters, who can grab baked treats such as fresh pain au choco­late (¤2.50) made by Dublin’s Bake­li­cious bak­ery. At lunchtime, the Ka­mado lump wood char­coal bar­beque roars into ac­tion out the back, with a daily meat spe­cial served with salad or in a sand­wich, with a corn on the cob. You can ex­pect chicken (¤6.25), steak (¤7), thick cuts of ba­con with av­o­cado (¤6.25) or some re­ally good foot-long sausages from

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