Wondering where to eat in Dublin? We ate our way through the Irish capital for two weeks and share our favorite restaurants, food shops and coffee bars here.
After two months in Europe, we journeyed to Dublin ready for a restful writing retreat. We envisioned a relaxing visit filled with lots of productivity and a bit of Irish fun. Instead, we arrived in Dublin at the start of a two-week rainy spell, the exact length of our visit, and discovered that our Airbnb apartment, located in dingy North Dublin, was not conducive for work much less a good night’s sleep. To add insult to injury, the city was filled with boisterous, bar-crawling American travelers, many on group tours, filling the sidewalks and pubs. This could have turned into a true travel disaster.
Instead of crying into our pints of Guinness, we took it upon ourselves to explore the bustling city. Of course, we hit up some tourist spots like Old Jameson Distillery, Guinness Storehouse, the National Museum of Ireland, the Book of Kells and the Long Room Library at Trinity College.
Not surprisingly, though, we focused our energy on food and drink. During our fortnight in Dublin, we found a handful of gems sparkling in the city’s emerging restaurant scene as well as several stellar coffee bars. If you think that the city is all about corned beef and cabbage, you’re living in the past. Read on and learn where to eat in Dublin now.
- Where to Eat in Dublin – 2foodtrippers Dublin Food Guide
Where to Eat in Dublin – 2foodtrippers Dublin Food Guide
Let’s face it, Dublin has a bad reputation for food. Other than the four Michelin starred restaurants including Chapter One, the city is filled with restaurants serving boring meat and potatoes. Right?
Wrong! Much like other cities around the world, Dublin is going through a restaurant renaissance with younger chefs opening new restaurants in the city as well as on the outskirts of town. We discovered many of these restaurants through word of mouth, proving that it’s always a good thing to talk to strangers when you’re at third wave coffee shops. You never know if your neighbor is a chef unless you engage in conversation as we did. To those chefs, we say ‘Thank You!’
What a difference three years makes. We were blown away by Brother Hubbard during our first visit to Dublin in 2013. The new-ish restaurant stood out as a shining light in the Dublin culinary scene with modern comfort food and quality coffee served in a trendy yet chill setting. All of this is still true. Now, though, the restaurant has become even more contemporary with iPad registers. Dinner service is also new, as is the no Wi-Fi policy.
The biggest change is that Brother Hubbard is no longer the new kid on the block. There is now a community of restaurants making their individual marks on the Dublin food scene. But don’t rule Brother Hubbard out. The cafe’s food features a hearty blend of mediterranean meets Irish meets world food like the Turkish Eggs Mememen with eggs, feta and black olive yogurt or the Beans and Pulled Pork Plate with pork, braised overnight, beans and a soft fried egg (pictured above). The restaurant’s sunlit room has a hip vibe that’s a perfect start for an active day of Dublin exploration.
Brother Hubbard is located at 153 Capel St, Dublin 1, Ireland.
We first heard about The Fumbally from a pair of young chefs sitting next to us at 3fe Coffee (featured below). After two visits to The Fumbally, we can safely recommend this casual yet funky restaurant to any Dublin visitor looking for a generally healthy meal or a good cup of coffee or both. We say ‘generally’ due to the outstanding Italian Roast Pork sandwich we ate there on our lunch visit (Pictured: Top) – one of the best pork sandwiches we’ve eaten recently. We also enjoyed the healthier avocado toast as well as the Chinese buns at Fumbally’s once a week dinner service on Wednesday nights.
Big and airy, the former industrial space is now filled with comfortable, vintage furniture. The staff is relaxed and friendly. As an extra bonus, The Fumbally has free Wi-Fi.
The Fumbally is located at Fumbally Lane, Dublin 8, Ireland.
This was the popular answer to our question of which one new restaurant we should check out in Dublin. Ironically, it’s so new that many trusty Dublin gastronomes have yet to eat there. Bastible is a chef driven restaurant where Chef Barry FitzGerald, formerly of popular Dublin Italian standout Etto, exercises his culinary chops using fresh ingredients in creative ways like the tasty spiced pistachio dip served with raw carrot slices and homemade sour cream as well as the tomato salad (pictured above) with fresh, bright green spring peas. We also enjoyed a dessert of apricot and almond frangiapone with white chocolate ice cream during our multi-course dinner.
Tasting Tip: The smallish dining space makes reservations a must. Make the extra effort and enjoy the reasonably priced dinner (€32 for two courses or €38 for three courses). With food this good, prices will eventually rise.
Bastible is located at 111 S Circular Rd, Dublin 8, Ireland.
Locks 1 Windsor Terrace
Located across the street from the Grand Canal, Locks 1 Windsor Terrace is serving beautiful, sophisticated food in a sun drenched neighborhood setting. Although our lunch looked like it could be served at any Michelin starred restaurant in France, we dug deeper to find flavors and ingredients unique to Dublin in dishes like the simple homemade rye bread service with smoked trout Irish butter and the crisp lamb belly with young carrots and local sheep’s cheese.
The one missing link at our lunch was the service, which was less than warm. Even with the service issue, we would return to this South Dublin restaurant in a heartbeat to try more of Chef Conor O’Dowd’s food paired with more refreshing dry Irish cider.
Locks 1 Windsor Terrace is located at 1 Windsor Terrace, Portobello, Dublin 8, Ireland.
Bunsen proves that you can find and eat an awesome hamburger in Dublin. Not counting drinks, Bunsen’s menu is so small that it fits on the back of a business card, literally. This is the place to go in Dublin for a big, sloppy burger. Go crazy and make it a double and add cheese. You know you want to go big, so just do it.
Tasting Tip: Order a side of fries if you want to be really happy. They’re on the back of the business card too.
Bunsen has three locations in Dublin. We ate at 36 Wexford St, Dublin 2
We discovered lots of food options on busy Parnell Street including its plethora of Asian eateries. Then, after eating at a few Chinese restaurants, we noticed tiny 147 Deli and found a good spot with creative lunch options. The deli restaurant isn’t fancy, nor should it be. Instead, it’s an ideal spot for an inexpensive lunch with filling sandwiches, hearty soups and fresh salads.
147 Deli is located at 1, 147 Parnell St, Dublin 1, Ireland.
We thought we were done with donuts after eating a gajillion of them on our North American road trip. However, we couldn’t resist the Nutella donut at Aungier Danger. How did we like this cake donut topped with chocolate glaze and filled with Nutella? We’d answer, but this is clearly a rhetorical question.
Tasting Tip: Be sure to arrive early since the donuts sell out fast. We learned our lesson from Charleston, South Carolina’s Glazed Gourmet Donuts (they were sold out at 10 am), and we won’t make that mistake again.
Aungier Danger is located at 37 Aungier St, Dublin, Ireland.
Dublin Pizza Company
Literally a few steps away from Aungier Dangier, Dublin Pizza Company is a brand spanking new pizzeria making creative pies to order in a custom, wood fired pizza oven. The staff makes pizza using organic ingredients with techniques honed in the Southern Italian pizza mecca of Naples, the home of the best pizza in the world. At the time of our visit, the restaurant did not have tables or chairs, but customers can eat the hot, made-to-order pizza right there on the sidewalk. That’s what we did. Another option is to eat the pizza on a nearby park bench.
Dublin Pizza Company is located at 32 Aungier St, Dublin Southside, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Da Mimmo was our personal savior in Dublin. Located less than a block from our less-than-fabulous Airbnb in a previously sketchy area of Dublin, this restaurant became our go-to for pasta, calzones and pizza. We fell in love with this popular spot in the gentrifying North Strand neighborhood, partly due to the food and partly due to the genuine warmth exuded by owner Tino Fusciardi and his staff. Fusciardi has brought a bit of his hometown of Casalattico, Italy to Dublin, and the result is a winner.
Da Mimmo is located at 148 North Strand Road Dublin 3, Dublin 3, Ireland.
As much as we love food, we sometimes get tired of restaurant dining when we travel. This is where food shops come into play. In addition to solving our restaurant burn-out dilemma, food shops serve another function – a peek into the heart of a city. Real people shop for food, and we always enjoy seeing what they buy.
Yes, we love to go to food shops when we travel, and Dublin is no exception to this rule.
Visiting the Dublin outpost of Galway based Sheridans Cheesemongers is like taking a cheese tour of Ireland. The friendly staff is more than willing to give out samples of one or more of the cheeses, many of which are made in Ireland. Shop Manager John Leverrier, originally from Brittany, is especially passionate about cheese and guided us through a wide variety of great Irish cheeses along with cheeses from producers in countries like France and Italy.
Sheridans Cheesemongers is located at 11 South Anne Street, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Fallon & Byrne
Dublin has its fair share of food shops in Dublin from corner convenience stores to super sized grocery stores. The food hall at Fallon & Byrne is our favorite of the mix. The store has an extensive selection of prepared foods that are easy to heat on a stove or in a microwave. The store also has fresh fish, baked goods and an enviable cheese counter.
Tasting Tip: Go to the wine cellar just below the food hall for a break from the busy city. The wine options are extensive and enticing. If you don’t believe us, then check out the hundreds of bottles lined up like soldiers on the cellar shelves.
Fallon & Byrne is located at 11-17 Exchequer St, Dublin 2, Ireland.
The coffee scene in Dublin has arrived. The city has a wide selection of locally based, third wave coffee shops. These shops are a lifeline to travelers like us, providing a fine place for work, conversation or a daily caffeine fix.
More than a typical coffee shop, 3fe is also a roastery that sells its coffee to the public, restaurants and other shops throughout Dublin and beyond. We fell in love with the 3fe coffee shop along with their coffee during our time in Dublin. 3fe uses top-notch, single origin beans, the pourovers are spot on and the staff is both attentive and friendly. In other words, this is our kind of coffee shop.
Tasting Tip: 3fe serves a full brunch on weekends. Go early to get a good table without a long wait.
3fe is located at 32 Grand Canal Street Lower, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Clement & Pekoe
We walked into Clement & Pekoe looking for a good cup of coffee and Wi-Fi. We found what we were looking for plus a fine selection of pastries and a cool refuge from the city hubbub. Serving coffee from independent roasters like Berlin’s The Barn (a favorite of ours from Lyon), Clement & Pekoe is a great spot for a coffee break when you’re shopping on nearby Grafton Street.
Clement & Pekoe is located at 50 South William St, Dublin 2, Ireland.
We love a coffee shop with good coffee and a good work space. At first glance, we thought that Kaph only succeeded with former. Then we took our cappuccinos upstairs to find a sunny room with enough tables and electrical outlets to make us happy. With a central Dublin location, Kaph is great for a quick caffeine break or a longer visit with a computer.
Kaph is located at 31 Drury St, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Proper Order Coffee Company
Most tourists in Dublin will visit the Old Jameson Distillery. Love it or hate it, the distillery is worth a visit for no other reason than its proximity to Proper Order Coffee Company. The new coffee shop offers expertly prepared drinks using beans sourced from coffee roasters around the world. As an added bonus, the small selection of pastries is well worth the calories.
Tasting Tip: Treat yourself to the weekly specials like the saffron latte that we enjoyed during one of our multiple visits.
Proper Order is located at 7 Haymarket, Dublin 7, Ireland.
Although coffee is our normal drink of choice, sometimes we enjoy an alcoholic beverage or two. Luckily, Dublin has a few places to find these types of drinks. And by a few, we mean a few on every block. During our time in Dublin, we found two pubs that we liked best.
Grogan’s is the definition of a classic Irish bar. The Central Dublin watering hole is the textbook spot to grab a drink, preferably a Guinness, while being regaled by soused locals who will fill your ear with Irish history and colorful tales of Dublin.
Tasting Tip: You can sit outside at Grogan’s on a sunny day and watch the city walk by. Better yet, grab a stool at the bar and mingle with the colorful locals for a genuine Dublin pub experience.
Grogans is located at 15 South William Street, Dublin 2, Ireland.
The Long Hall
The Long Hall is dark and intimate with a wall of whiskeys to taste. Not a whiskey expert? No worries since the bartenders are full of information and recommendations about the options at every price point from € to €€€. While you’re there, be sure to check out the wall covered with eclectic memorabilia.
The Long Hall is located at 51 South Great George’s Street, Dublin 2, Ireland.
Thanks to Fáilte Ireland for providing us with a Dublin Media Pass that helped us visit many of the excellent tourist attractions in the city.