Browsing Tag

dublin cafes

FOOD HOME RESTAURANT REVIEWS

Best Vietnamese Coffee in Dublin

Vietnamese Coffee

This year, I was absolutely blessed to spend a couple of weeks in Southern and Central Vietnam. We had toyed with the idea of going to Bali, but a friend of mine advised me I’d probably be disappointed and end up like a mad woman when I saw the amount of plastic litter there (Litter is my absolute bugbear y’see). So as we like to combine cultural enrichment with stuffing our faces, Vietnam it was to be.

Like pretty much all holidays I go on, I vowed to adopt various aspects of what I had seen and eaten and integrate it into my newly-enriched view of life on return to normal life. After about a week of putting ginger and lemongrass in absolutely everything, the novelty wore off. However, my newly-found love of Vietnamese Iced Coffee (cà phê sữa đá if you want to be all multilingual) did not wane.  If you have a drip filter at home, you can make it as you would a normal filter coffee then pour the hot coffee into a glass full of ice cubes containing 2-3 tablespoons of condensed milk. And there you have it!

Alternatively, if you want to hit the streets, there are a number of places in this fair city where you can indulge. Vice coffee, The Good Food Store, Jolins, Bun Cha all have decent offerings, but for me, the clear winner is TwoFiftySquare in Rathmines. They roast their own coffee in the back of the cafe and have won the Irish Times Award for best coffee, so you know you’re getting good stuff here. Try them out, both Vietnamese Coffee and Two Fifty Square. You won’t be disappointed by either.

Best Vietnamese Coffee in Dublin

Top photo credit: The Journal by Intrepid Travel.

FOOD RESTAURANT OFFERS

Dine in Dublin 2017

Dine in Dublin Festival

If you’re of a certain age i.e. a lot younger than myself, you won’t remember a time when the Dublin food scene was horrendous. Like, seriously horrendous. These days, however, it takes quite an effort to get a crappy meal in Dublin. Nonethless, we humans are creatures of habit, and just as we end up wearing the same ten items of clothing, we also tend to frequent the same handful of restaurants. So, with the advent of Dine in Dublin on Monday, February 27th, running until Sunday, March 5th, now’s the time to break out of your rut and avail of the great offers available during festival week. There is a full list of the restaurants and cafes which are are taking part on the Dine in Dublin website, but here are a few of my recommendations:

Fallon & Byrne
1. FALLON & BYRNE
One of favourite places in Dublin full stop. I could easily spend a whole afternoon just walking around their food hall, and as for their restaurant – fabulous! For festival week, they’re offering a 3 course meal for two people with Prosecco Cocktails on arrival for €60. Choose from a set menu which includes Pan-roasted Irish hake and Free-range Irish coq au vin. And to finish it off, who could say no to a Mont Blanc Knickerbocker Glory with chestnut mousse!
Contact: Fallon & Byrne, 11 Exchequer Street, Dublin 2

Brother Hubbard
2. BROTHER HUBBARD
If you haven’t been to Brother Hubbard, sort yourself out pronto! This über trendy cafe on Capel Street (and Harrington Street) serves up some gorgeous 3FE coffe and semonlina pancakes by day, and from Wednesday to Sunday, offers an incredible Middle Eastern Feast Menu in the evening. For Dine in Dublin 2017, they are offering this 3 Course Feasting Menu for €50 for two people. Choices include falafal, pomegranate chicken livers, beef kofta, lamb shoulder, not to mention a hole heap of vegetarion options. Methinks, you’ll like it a lot.
Contact: Brother Hubbard, 153 Capel Street, Dublin 1

Laduree Dublin

3. LADUREE
I love France. I love the idea of Frenchness. So it’s a bit of a given that I’m in love with Ladurée. Situated on the corner of South William Street, the restaurant/café evokes all that you would imagine a Parisian tearoom would look and feel like. Perhaps the hubby or boyfriend won’t quite appreciate its boudoir decor, but for the ladies, it’s a perfect way to spend an afternoon with friends or the mammy for a special treat. For festival week, they are offering afternoon tea for two people with a glass of bubbles for €45. Choose from a selection of finger sandwiches, pastries, macarons, and financiers (that’s a small almond cake, not the lad who works behind the counter at your local AIB).
Contact: Ladurée, South William Street/Exchequer Street Corner, Dublin 2

The Woollen Mills
4. THE WOOLLEN MILLS
If you don’t get to go here during the festival, make sure to drop by at some stage, if not for a meal, then for a coffee and one of their amazing sambos or sausage rolls. During Dine in Dublin, they are offering a 3 course dinner plus cocktails for two for €60. On the menu are Mussel + leek paté, Ha’penny Bridge homemade coddle, stout-braised beef short ribs, and white chocolate cheesecake among others. When you’re booking, try to get a seat in the roof terrace looking out at the Ha’penny Bridge and the Liffey. The view is pure Dublin!
Contact: The Woollen Mills, 42 Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1

All photos courtesy of dineindublin.ie

FOOD NEWS HEALTH

Matcha Do About Nothing?

Matcha Latte

There has been a lot of buzz about Matcha tea in the last year or so. In case you haven’t heard, Matcha is a variety of high-quality and, dare I say, bloody pricey, green tea, used originally in tea ceremonies by Zen Buddhist monks who valued its health-giving attributes. It has been around since the 12th century, which is why you probably won’t have seen it on Dragon’s Den at any time. However, Celebland and the West in general, in its desperate quest to find the next superfood, has latched on to it like it’s the best thing since the selfie stick!

So what’s so great about the green stuff?

  • It’s full of antioxidants including the all-powerful EGCg (sure wouldn’t you know that would be involved). In the Premier League of antioxidants, let’s just say Matcha is dead cert for winning the cup, and spinach is facing relegation. That’s how good this stuff is!
  • It boosts metabolism and burns calories (burn calories, you say!)
  • Calms the mind and aids concentration
  • It’s rich in fibre (ahem, say no more!)
  • Lowers cholesterol

So what does it taste like?

Eh, green tea obvs! But if, like me, you can’t stand the taste of green tea, all is not lost. Mix a spoonful in with your favourite smoothie, or into a glass of apple juice, and it is very tasty indeed. There are a number of online retailers selling Matcha powder, or you can purchase it from the organic supermarket group. If you’re out and about, you can get it as a Latte instead of your normal coffee fix from the numerous independent cafés around the country. But be warned, the taste does vary somewhat depending on the type of milk used e.g. almond or coconut. So if you don’t like it the first time, give it a go somewhere else. Your wellbeing will thank you for it!

Here are my top three places in Dublin city to fill your Matcha Latte prescription:

1. Kaph, 31 Drury Street, Dublin 2
2. Cracked Nut, 71 Camden Street, Dublin 2
3. Oolong Flower Power, 4 Stephens Street Lower, Dublin 2