- Richard Lawler
All visitors to Dublin inevitably make their way to the iconic Temple Bar area of the city, which is famed for being one of the Irish capital’s cultural highlights. The abundance of quality eateries situated so close to one another can be overwhelming, so take a look at our guide to the top ten restaurants in order to help you make a fantastic choice.
This superb and highly affordable restaurant in the heart of Temple Bar was founded by the Michelin starred Irish chef Oliver Dunne. Here you will find friendly service in a relaxed setting as you enjoy some of the finest Irish cuisine, all made from the freshest local ingredients. You can also sample delightful European wines, colorful cocktails and locally brewed Irish craft beer. If you’re planning on dining out in Temple Bar, Cleaver East should be at the top of your list.
Cleaver East, 2 Essex Street East, Dublin 2, +353 1 531 3500
Mexico to Rome
As the name implies, here we find a fascinating combination of Mexican and Italian cooking situated right opposite the famous Temple Bar pub itself. Mexico to Rome’s prices are very reasonable, especially considering the central location, and the fajitas and burritos are to die for. The open kitchen enables you to see the fresh food being prepared from scratch before your eyes, including their special Tex-Mex Baby Back Ribs in a Southern Comfort BBQ sauce.
Mexico to Rome, 23 Essex St E, Dublin 2, +353 1 6772727
Gallaghers Boxty House
A boxty is a distinctively Irish potato pancake that originated in the north of the country several centuries ago, and is currently undergoing something of a culinary renaissance. At the Boxty House, you can enjoy the very finest variants of the dish, both contemporary and traditional, such as the corned beef and cabbage boxty, as well as a wide selection of other types of food if you so desire, such as steak or lamb.
Gallaghers Boxty House, 20-21 Temple Bar, Dublin 2, +353 1 677 2762
It is not too hard to get mixed up between the Irish and Italian flags, but quality Italian cooking is absolutely unmistakable wherever you find it. IL Vicoletto, a wonderful slice of Italy serves up beautiful pasta, pizza and ravioli in a Mediterranean-style setting, with accompanying Italian music, which is sure to put a big smile on your face. Head here for an excellent meal where ‘quality is never sacrificed’.
This jewel of a restaurant transports diners from Ireland to Indonesia, and provides a truly unique experience if you’re in the mood for something a little unconventional. Chameleon takes the tapas format and gives it an Indonesian twist, so you’ll have a diverse range of small dishes to choose between and share among your friends, all as you soak up an atmosphere you won’t experience anywhere else in Dublin.
Chameleon, 1 Lower Fownes Street, Temple Bar, Dublin 2, +353 1 671 0362
Taste of Brazil – Cozinha Brasileira
Authentic Brazilian food served by a helpful and friendly Brazilian staff right in the middle of Temple Bar. The menu features very large and filling steaks of the highest quality, and there are numerous tasty cocktails to try if you’re feeling more adventurous. The house wine is also delicious, making Cozinha Brasileira one of the top stops in Dublin for Brazilian cuisine.
Taste of Brazil, 32 Parliament St, Dublin 2, +353 1 675 9973
Elephant & Castle
This well-known establishment was opened in 1989 after an Irish chef was denied entry to the United States, which prompted his associates to set up in Dublin instead. The Elephant & Castle has gone from strength to strength ever since, and is now famous for its utterly delectable chicken wings and burgers. The restaurant is one of the busiest in Temple Bar, so you would be advised to book in advance to make sure you get a table.
The Elephant & Castle, 18-19 Temple Bar, Dublin 2, +353 1 679 3121
The Old Mill Restaurant
If you’re after a more traditional Irish dining experience, then the Old Mill was designed to appeal to you. Few tourist can resist the lure of the ubiquitous fish and chips, especially if it is accompanied by a delicious pint of Guinness in a warm and cozy setting. Visit here and you’ll gain some first-hand experience of the legendary hospitality for which the Irish are internationally renowned.
The Old Mill Restaurant, 14 Temple Bar Square, Dublin 2, +353 1 671 9266
The Shack Restaurant
The Shack offers up staple Irish culinary delights, such as bacon chops accompanied by cabbage and traditional Irish stew with fresh vegetables. The staff are wonderfully friendly and courteous, and the atmosphere is warm and welcoming. The steak and Guinness pie in particular is nothing less than exquisite.
The Shack Restaurant, 24 Essex St E, Dublin 2, +353 1 679 0043
Banyi Japanese Dining
Here you can enjoy fresh and authentic Japanese food in a cozy location, away from the hustle and bustle of the passing throngs of tourists. Presentation is everything in Japanese cuisine, and the staff at Banyi clearly take tremendous pride in their beautiful sushi and sashimi. The desserts are especially elaborate in style and taste, from the mango cheesecake to the chocolate fondant. Here the passion is much in evidence.
Banyi Japanese Dining, 4 Bedford Row, Dublin 2, +353 1 675 0669
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