The Best Restaurants in Kilkenny, Ireland

Photo of Ciaran Lawler
9 February 2017

On the banks of the majestic River Nore lies the medieval city of Kilkenny, one of the most popular tourist destinations in Ireland. There is naturally a vast array of high quality restaurants for visitors to choose from, and here we will look at six of the absolute best.

Lautrecs Bistro

Relax in this Irish and tapas restaurant

Opened in 1987, Lautrecs is one of the most well established restaurants in Kilkenny, and has maintained its quality and reputation over the years. Lautrecs offers a superb mix of homegrown Irish recipes with a diverse range of international elements to liven things up. The tapas bar is probably the main draw for many visitors, but there are plenty of other options including stone baked pizzas and oven roasted cod fillet. Sit outside on a sunny day and wash your meal down with a pint of Guinness as you watch the locals go about their daily business, and you are sure to have an Irish experience to remember.

Price: mid-range

Opening hours: Mon-Sat 12.30-10pm; Sun 12.30-9pm

Watch out for: the best tapas in town

Lautrecs Bistro, 9 St Kieran’s St, Kilkenny, Ireland, +353 56 776 2720

Algarve Grill

Portuguese culinary perfection

Algarve Grill is a beautiful restaurant that focuses on traditional Portuguese cooking, served in a laid back setting at a very reasonable price and with a very accommodating staff who are eager to please guests. The piri piri chicken is a particularly popular favourite, as is the mouth-watering green peppercorn steak, all of which are prepared before your eyes in an intimate open kitchen. Delicious Portuguese beer, which is both distinctive and quite difficult to obtain in Ireland, is served chilled, and the atmosphere is wonderfully relaxed. The homemade desserts are also unique and utterly delectable.

Price: mid-range

Opening hours: 9am-9pm daily

Watch out for: the best piri piri chicken in Ireland

Algarve Grill, Hebron Rd, Kilkenny, Ireland, +353 83 403 3609

Royal Spice

Great Indian dining in the heart of Kilkenny

Royal Spice is generally considered to be the finest Indian restaurant in Kilkenny. Having opened in 2009 it quickly developed a strong reputation for high quality food and excellent service. Using authentic Indian cooking methods in tandem with the freshest local Irish ingredients, the Royal Spice has gone from strength to strength, and earlier this year it moved to a larger building to accommodate more guests. Highlights of the extensive menu include the house spice chicken and the royal murg masala, all of which are served in a friendly and warm atmosphere which suits any occasion.

Price: mid-range

Opening hours: Mon-Sat 5-10pm; Sun 12.30-10pm

Watch out for: the finest Indian food in Kilkenny

Royal Spice, 2-3 Watergate, Kilkenny, Dublin, +353 56 7712646

Royal Spice | Image courtesy of Royal Spice
Royal Spice | Image courtesy of Royal Spice

Ristorante Rinuccini

An internationally acclaimed Italian restaurant

Named after Papal Nuncio Giovanni Battista Rinuccini, a Florentine nobleman who lived in Kilkenny in the 17th century and was known for his love of food and the arts, Ristorante Rinuccini is a family-run establishment that has become something of an institution in the town. Impeccable Italian cuisine is the order of the day, complimented by a wide assortment of house red and white wines imported directly from Italian vineyards. It is no surprise that Ristorante Rinuccini has become one of the most popular and beloved restaurants in Kilkenny, regularly attracting large crowds of both locals and tourists.

Price: mid-range

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 12-2.30pm, 5-10pm; Sat 12-3pm, 5-10pm; Sun 12-3pm, 5-9pm

Watch out for: the fantastic selection of Italian wines

Ristorante Rinuccini, 1 The Parade, Kilkenny, Ireland, +353 56 776 1575

Ristorante Rinuccini | Image courtesy of Ristorante Rinuccini
Ristorante Rinuccini | Image courtesy of Ristorante Rinuccini


Elegant and upmarket restaurant near Kilkenny Castle

Within the Kilkenny Design Centre, a delightful market where you can purchase lovingly manufactured Irish fashion and crafts, lies the award-winning Anocht restaurant. ‘Anocht’ is Gaelic word for ‘tonight’, and visiting this restaurant at the beginning of any night in Kilkenny would be time very well spent indeed, thanks to its impeccable service, varied menu and intimate setting. You may wish to pop in on your way back after visiting the iconic Kilkenny Castle, which is situated just a few minutes away and is an essential location to check out when visiting the town.

Price: fine dining

Opening hours: Thur-Sun 6pm-late

Watch out for: its very close proximity to Kilkenny Castle

Anocht, Kilkenny Design Centre, Castle Yard, Kilkenny, Ireland, +353 56 772 2118

Anocht | Image courtesy of Anocht
Anocht | Image courtesy of Anocht

Yindees Downtown

Eastern fusion in the medieval city

Yindees brings patrons a dynamic taste of Asia, fusing the various dining traditions of Malaysia, Vietnam and Southern India, but maintaining a specific focus on the enduringly venerated culinary heritage of Thailand. Situated right at the entrance to the four star Kilkenny River Court Hotel, here you can feast on the likes of crisp roasted duck or Thai green curry amidst a sophisticated and elegant setting. Yindees also features a popular cocktail bar where you can chill out in good company before or after your meal.

Price: mid-range

Opening hours: Wed-Thur 5.30-9.30pm; Fri-Sat 5.30-10pm; Sun 4.30-pm

Watch out for: dishes that fuse Asian culinary traditions

Yindees, McCourts Townhouse, The Bridge, John’s St, Kilkenny, Ireland, +353 56 779 4614

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