Do you, like us, miss lunch? If you need a break from brunch menus, here are five places to go for lunch in Dublin …
Let me start by extolling the virtues of the meal that is brunch. I adore brunch and all its egg glory. While I am certainly more of a savoury brunch person (at least since I morphed into an actual grown up), nothing will ever detract from my love for Turkish eggs, a crispy potato hash or indeed a plateful of torn ham and eggs perched on a crumpet and smothered in a luscious, buttery hollandaise. But I miss lunch. Not the grab and go style lunch of the midweek persuasion but a lazy weekend lunch with napkins and tablecloths. Or not. These are not deal breakers but you get my meaning. Perhaps I am just greedy and sometimes want more than a one-course brunch can offer. After all, it is the weekend. If you too want to bring back lunch over brunch, here are five places to go.
There is a lot happening in Stoneybatter and the arrival of Hakkahan has almost certainly increased its appeal as a dining destination. Hakkahan is where to venture when you are craving excellent Chinese food at 12pm on a Sunday. From experience, it is relatively quiet at this time which is a good thing as the space itself is quite small and can feel a bit cramped at peak times. The food is authentic, reasonably priced (meaning you can order a few things) and ultimately delicious. The standout dishes are the sourdough shrimp toast and the basil duck, but actually, everything I have tried so far from the concise menu has been delicious. www.hakkahan.ie
The Wild Goose Grill, Ranelagh
A Ranelagh favourite, Sunday lunch at The Wild Goose Grill is often my go-to when I am craving a dining experience with a touch of formality but zero stuffiness. Two courses costs €29.95 and includes starters such as duck confit and crispy calamari while main course options include a classic roast beef (€8 supplement) with their excellent goose potatoes. The Sunday lunch menu is served all day on Sundays from 1pm – 7.30pm but will finish up for the summer months from the end of May so make haste. www.thewildgoosegrill.ie
Sprezzatura, Camden Market, Dublin 2 and Rathmines
A perfect casual Sunday lunch option, Sprezzatura have recently overhauled their menu and the result is enough to make you want to visit immediately. The dish of the moment, arancini, is now available in four flavours including the classic with pomodoro sauce and new variations including beef cheek with Cashel blue cheese sauce, confit Rings Farm chicken with tarragon aioli and a vegetarian alternative of four-cheeses of Ireland with truffle and Cáis na Tire fonduta. Sharing platters of The Wooded Pig charcuterie have also been added to the menu, perfect with a glass of wine shared over a weekend post mortem. www.sprezzatura.ie
The Saddle Room at The Shelbourne
Something to celebrate? Or perhaps you just feel like treating yourself to a weekend afternoon spent in style. The Saddle Room at The Shelbourne is the perfect backdrop for a relaxing Sunday afternoon with fine food and wine and a lunch menu priced at just €34 for two courses. Starters include salt baked celeriac with Cashel blue cheese, golden raisin purée and toasted hazelnuts, and the ever so summery market fish of the day with a broth of summer vegetables and fresh herbs. www.theshelbourne.com
Sole, South William Street
The recent announcement that seafood restaurant Sole will now open seven nights a week is exciting news for seafood lovers and those who previously found dining options early in the week to be sparse in the city. There is something thoroughly indulgent about dining out on a Monday night but a weekend lunch at Sole should not be overlooked. Open from 1pm on Saturday and Sunday, the two/three course set menu (€35/€40) has plenty of options but there is nothing quite like spending an afternoon grazing over one of their infamous seafood towers while enjoying a crisp white wine. Oyster lovers will enjoy the wide selection of oysters available and for the meat eaters, there is always an excellent steak option. www.sole.ie
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