Showing posts with label dinner. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dinner. Show all posts

Monday, February 12, 2018

Excellent Dishes and Comfort All The Way at The Barn


Excellent Dishes and Comfort All The Way at The Barn
Lamb

Carpets and comfort all the way at the long-established Barn Restaurant, between Mayfield and Glanmire, when we visited at the weekend. Excellent service too and some pretty decent food as well in this spacious busy place, courteous and as efficient as ever despite a long running renovation that will mean a big expansion on an already large venue.

The renovation area though is neatly tucked away and you hardly notice, especially these dark evenings. You certainly don't notice it once you enter to a warm welcome. You are seated in a sizeable waiting area, given the menus (Early Bird, Set, and A La Carte) and you can also order a drink as you study the dishes on offer. A note on provenance is on the menu to the effect that all their beef, lamb and pork are Irish.
Pork

Soon our order was taken and we were shown to our table. An amuse bouche of smoked salmon (their own) and cream cheese was a nice way of beginning. The melon and fruit platter is a long-standing favourite here, also a favourite of CL’s. But she ignored it this time and instead “voted” for the Chicken Caesar salad with garlic croutons and shaved parmesan (€8.90). That got ten out of ten for a well balanced dish and the croutons were also excellent, not the hard type that could break a tooth!

Chicken Caesar Salad
And I was well pleased too with a similarly priced Serrano Ham, Olive and semi-sundried tomato salad with a basil honey dressing, a delicious mix of textures and flavours, another well balanced mix of sweetness and sharpness, also €8.90. Other starters included a Duck and Chicken Paté, The Barn’s Black Pudding with spiced chutney, BBQ marinated chicken wings, Potted Garlic Prawns.

Lots of steak and fish (including fish and chips) on the mains, also chicken and duck and they also offered two vegetarian options.

The lamb was my pick: Marinated Roast Rack of Irish Lamb with minted Kiwi Compote, sweet chilli drizzle and Cabernet Sauce (23.90). This was perfectly cooked as ordered and nicely presented, some delicious veg on the side. All the extras played a part, especially that sumptuous sauce.

CL meanwhile was also very happy with her Roast Fillet of Pork Steak (20.90); the roulade was stuffed with savoury mushroom and bacon, beetroot and apple chutney and truffle drizzle, even if there was no sign of the beetroot!  
Serrano

Plates were polished off and a fairly anonymous Malbec (6.50 a glass) also finished and we then turned our attention to the famous dessert trolley rolled, with some effort, over the plush carpet! Quite a choice here, all 7.50, and we enjoyed a Pavlova and a Marinated Fruit, each with a scoop of ice-cream. Nice finalé but the highlights came earlier.

* The renovation/extension works are on-going but the "old" area is still totally active, fifty or sixty in by the time we left, about 8.00pm. The new area, I was told, will take the pressure off the existing area. And there is a new patio with "the best views out over Glanmire”. When will it all be finished? Answers include “Your guess is as good as mine” and “They’re tipping away at it.” Hopefully, when it’s up and running, The Barn will look to improving their presence on social media!


Thursday, January 25, 2018

Dynamic Duo At Dockland Cork

Dynamic Duo At Dockland Cork
Lamb

Dynamic duo Harold Lynch and Beth Haughton are behind the new Dockland Restaurant on the very same site where their popular Club Brasserie stood up to a few short months ago. A hectic two month conversion process (= flat-out hard work!) saw a new, brighter, deli cum restaurant emerge to cater to the new lighter and healthier eating trend that has begun to emerge in recent years.

The welcome is as warm as ever. And don't worry! Lots of small bites but If you want your full dinner here, you’ll be in for a treat. Take your time as you make your way through the delicious starters, the array of main courses and the tempting desserts. 

We had missed out on the experience before Christmas but made it Lapps Quay the other night. And, yes, we were there for the dinner! Settled in and studied the menu, starting with the Bites to Bigger Bites. Something here to suit every pocket and taste, from a Bowl of Marinated Olives (3.00), to Baked Ardsallagh Goats Cheese, red peppers, chilli flakes dip, on toasted Arbutus Bread (5.00) to Baked King Prawns, garlic, chillies, olive oil, Arbutus sourdough (13.00).

My pick was the Ballyhoura Mushrooms crostini, cream, tarragon, parmesan truffle oil (5.00). Just love the texture and flavour of this little marvel. And CL’s starter was another gem: Roasted Aubergine, Toonsbridge Mozzarella, tomato fondue, parmesan and pesto (5.00).
Aubergine

There have a list of Pizzas as well but we concentrated on the Main Plates of which there was quite a choice. Mine was the Grilled Sumac Spiced Lamb steak (with tomato, herb cucumber salad, chargrilled vegetable couscous, spiced yogurt, and toasted almonds). What a lovely dish, a perfect balance of flavours and spice, tender and delicious, all for €18.00. 

CL considered the Fish of the Day but in the end went for the regular Baked Hake (22.00). The hake came with gremolata, parmesan crust, piperade, tomatoes, black olives , cream and basil. Lots going on there but the meticulous cooking of Harold Lynch and crew in the kitchen means every little detail was spot on, as was the case with the lamb, and the whole dish was a flavoursome treat.
Something Sweet was the next heading to be considered. CL picked the Yogurt, poached vanilla mint berries, muesli, honey, pumpkin seeds (6.30). This is a new addition to their morning, brunch, lunch and evening menu and perfectly described as “a little sweet healthiness”, which it certainly was. Mine was a little more indulgent but I enjoyed every little bit of the Rolled Meringue, lime vanilla cream, poached plums and toasted almonds (6.30).
Hake

The lunch menu is even more extensive and at all times you may spend as much or as little as you with. Drop in for a pair of the small bites and a glass of wine. Maybe just a pizza. If you don’t have time to linger, then join the queue at the Deli counter for take-out. By the way, even though there are 90 seats in the restaurant, you are advised to book, particularly at the weekend. 
Plum

Front-of-House is led, as was the case with Brasserie, by Beth. She and her crew make you feel welcome from the opening smile and they are efficient also. The bar is now part of the main restaurant and you may enjoy a favourite drink before you start, a gin and tonic perhaps, maybe a Negroni? Cheers.
“a little sweet healthiness”
Dockland
City Quarter
Lapps Quay
Cork
T: 353 (0)21 427 3987




Sunday, May 28, 2017

Dinner and Movies. Great Views too. Montenotte Hotel's Panorama Bistro

Dinner and Movies. Great Views too.
Montenotte Hotel’s Panorama Bistro
Dine with Rosanna next month

The restaurant at the revamped Hotel Montenotte is called The Panorama and the spacious and comfortable bistro and bar certainly lives up to the name. From most of room and from the terrace outside you have a great view over the river and much of the city.

And the revamp isn't confined to the inside. Below the level of the restaurant and out in front, a lovely new “formal” garden is rapidly taking shape. The rectangular centrepiece is divided into quadrants and the matching plants in the four areas are about to burst into bloom. 

And a feature inside, an unusual one, is the hotel’s very own cinema, The Cameo. And it is quite a luxurious room as we found out after dinner in the bistro last week.

When you enter through the door your cinema experience immediately begins with curtained walls, cinema lighting, large projection screen, luxurious tiered seating, surround sound and the latest in cinema technology, you will not have an experience elsewhere like it. They offer themed film nights from Comedy to International; there is something for everyone. And the venue is for hire.

The hotel caters for quite a few events and next month will start a series called “An Evening With…”.  Author, model and nutritionist, Rosanna Davison, starts the ball rolling on June 14th. Among her accolades, Rosanna has been crowned Miss World, qualified as nutritionist, and is a successful top model and most recently she is author of two bestselling health, nutrition and fitness books ‘Eat Yourself Fit’ and ‘Eat Yourself Beautiful’. 

Ticket cost is €100 per person and includes the reception, evening meal with Rosanna, and a donation to the hotel’s charity the Daisy Chain Foundation More details here
Work in progress

There is a new chef Adrian Hillgrove in charge. He has wide experience including working at Rick Stein’s flagship eatery in Cornwall. He has a love of seafood and fish and you'll see some of his fishes dishes on the A La Carte for the Panorama here.  

Brian Bowler, General Manager at The Montenotte Hotel, is delighted that Hillgrove has joined them: “He has a wonderful way with flavours, and his creativity and use of only of the finest in-season produce from the region ensures that our menus will delight those who visit and who stay with us.”
Salmon

There is a separate three course menu for the Movie Evening and we enjoyed that the other night.   The place was busy but the staff were on the ball and there was no delay in getting us sorted, the menus, water and some very tasty bread on the table without fuss.

Having read the chef's background, I started with the Chowder. I wasn't disappointed. The creamy bowlful was chock-a-block with red, smoked and white fish and a few mussels lurking there too for good measure. And CL was well pleased with a Watermelon and Feta Salad with chicken and orange and rocket.

Off to a good start. And so it continued. Sirloin Steak and Traditional Fish and Chips were featured on the Mains but I liked the sound of the Fillet of Salmon with Asparagus and Rocket; this had a fresh herb crust pesto, parmesan cheese, pink peppercorns and beurre blanc sauce. I liked the look and flavours of this excellent combination, loved the cheese and the pesto. Fairly simple and nothing over the top but a nice way of presenting the salmon.

Across the table, the Pan Fried Chicken Supreme went down well. A highlight here was a lovely Jameson and Wild Mushroom Sauce. The celeriac mash was excellent too as were our side dishes of vegetables.

The dessert list was short, with the usual suspects. But I was in for a delightful surprise as my Tiramisu was one of the best that I've come across in a while.

It was billed as a classic Italian dish, layered soaked biscotti and mascarpone cream, chocolate shavings. Plenty of sponge there to soak up all the sweet stuff! CL’s wasn't quite of the same class but not bad either. She had the Lemon Posset, poached winter berries, white wine stock syrup, blackberries, raspberries and ginger-nut crust. The berries were a little scarce but overall the lemon came through well. Two generous desserts, by the way and, on the A La Carte, each costs €6.95.

After then it was time to head the Cameo, just a few steps away, and the movie! Lights out.

Sit back and relax!
Movie Latest: Agents & Heroes @ The Cameo Cinema for the Month of June.

2 course meal €24.95 per person, 3 course meal €29.95 per person.

For bookings, call us on 021 453 0050






Thursday, April 20, 2017

Fenn’s Quay's Special


Fenn’s Quay's Special
Cod
From breakfast ’til late at night Fenn’s Quay will feed you, and feed you well. Lots of menus here, including a set lunch and an Early Bird. That Early Bird is, unusually, available on Saturdays up to 6.30.

It is good value and has quite a few dishes from the A La Carte. As it happened, it was the A La Carte that we concentrated on last weekend. We noticed some dishes that are almost fixtures here, such as the O’Mahony's Feather-blade and the same O'Mahony’s Collar of Bacon.
Beetroot cured salmon
But there is no shortage of variety in Fenn’s Quay, once you factor in a packed specials board. And, conveniently, they also include a written list of the specials as well as the traditional blackboard.

We tend to make good use of the specials and we did so here as well, though neither of the starters featured on the board.

CL choose Cork Dry Gin and Beetroot cured salmon with buttermilk dillisk and cucumber pickle (€10.00), a very well judged combination, very tasty indeed. 

Braised lentils and beef tongue with pickled quail egg
I was delighted with my Braised lentils and beef tongue with pickled quail egg (€10.00). The broth or jus - I used some of their well-made bread to mop it up - was full of the flavours from the tongue and the lentils and the quail was the first of my Easter eggs. Happy out!

We had been tempted by one of special starters, a Fish Platter with O’Connell’s smoked salmon, smoked mackerel, fish croquette and beer battered cod.
Dessert

We would though have O’Connell's cod on the double as we agreed on the mains, the Fish of the Day special (19.00). Details are: Cod, spinach, cod skin and cod purée, served with roasted cauliflower florets and peas. All added up to an exquisite dish, the fish as fresh as could be and cooked perfectly and that cauliflower was excellent. 

The dessert special was another winner: Bewley's Pannacotta with dark chocolate and brandy mousse (€6.50); had an idea this was going to be delicious (and it was!) and so we left the popular Mimi’s Cork Dry Gin and Tonic Dessert behind!

They have a short but well judged list of wines here, some available by the glass and most, if not all, by the carafe and bottle. And also they had a couple of specials on the board. Unusually, they also have a list of craft beers, Blacks and Mountain Man among them, but I went for a regular favourite the Stonewell Medium Cry Cider (€6.50). Food and presentation was top notch, service too and so it was a happy if overdue return to No. 5 Fenn’s Quay. Very Highly Recommended.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas dinner menu ideas


Christmas dinner menu ideas

Christmas dinner menu ideas 
Whether you’re going traditional or vegetarian, we have Christmas dinner menu ideas to help you choose everything from the starter to dessert. Everyone should check out our Make−ahead Christmas dinner menu, which will help you to prepare in advance so you can relax on the big day!

What’s on your menu?

Menus for everyone

Friday, November 11, 2011

SUPERB RHONE WINES AT HAYFIELD EVENT


HAYFIELD MANOR HOTEL WINE SOCIETY
The Menu
Aperitif:  Cotes de Provence, Domaine Houchart 2010

Pan Fried Bantry Bay Scallops, Tomato and lime salsa, Beetroot Jelly, Caper and Sultana Dressing served with a Chateauneuf du Pape white, Domaine du Vieux Lazaret  2009. Famille Quiot.

Orchids Home Smoked Breast of Duck, Duck liver and Foie Gras Parfait, Fruit Bread, Orange Dressing served with a Cotes du Rhone  Villages Sablet, Chateau du Trignon 2007, Famille Quiot.

Seared Loin of Venison, Confit Yam, parsnip, Parsley..... served with a Chateauneuf du Pape, Cuvee Exceptionnelle, Domaine du Vieux Lazaret 2006, Famille Quiot.

The Cheeses (Cooleeney Farmhouse, French Brie, Bandon Vale Vintage Cheddar, Cahill’s Farm Irish Porter Cheese) served with Chateau du Trignon Vacqueyras 2007, Famille Quiot.

Baked Cheese Cake with Warm Tropical Fruits...served with a Muscat de Beaumes de Venise Chateau du Trignon 2008.
Jean-Louis


This was the promising menu ahead of last night’s first Wine Dinner of the Hayfield Manor Wine Society . The promise was indeed delivered, thanks to the superb wines, introduced with wit and inside knowledge by Jean-Louis Smyl of the Famille Quiot, and thanks to the superb food prepared by Executive Chef Graeme Campbell and his team. And a big merci also to Sandra Biret-Crowley, the sommelier at the hotel, who worked so hard to bring the whole event together.
Yours truly with sommelier  Sandra
Started in the bar with a  big welcome from Joe and Marcus of KarwigWines and soon an introduction to Jean-Louis who told me the family has five vineyards in the general area. It was from the most southerly of these, Domaine Houchart, that the aperitif came from, a lively and fresh 2010 rosé.
More introductions followed as we moved from the bar to the Vine Wine Cellar and our tables and here Jean-Louis told us about their white Chateauneuf, made from Grenache Blanc, Bourboulenc, Clairette and Roussanne. Very supple and with quite a decent finish and a pleasing match with the excellent scallops.
Now we were on to the Smoked Breast of Duck, embellished by well chosen accompaniments and further enhanced by a splendid Cotes du Rhone Village from the highly regarded village of Sablet, set in the hills, and a big favourite of Jean-Louis.
And then came a high point of the evening. The Venison was superb and the wine match was made in heaven, well made in Domaine du Vieux Lazaret actually. This was a Cuvee Exceptionnelle, not made every year. They decided to make one in 2006 and we benefitted from the choice last evening. Inviting aromas, soft and round on the palate, no shortage of spice as you might expect with Grenache and Syrah to the fore, and a long finish.
The village of Vacqueyras is one of the eight crus of the southern Rhone and it was the family’s Chateau du Trignon that the 2007 came from and it proved a terrific match for the line-up of cheeses.
Beaumes de Venise, another small village, is just down the road and here our wine journey for the evening would finish.  Quite a decent red is produced here but we were treated to the well known AOC Muscat Beaumes de Venise, a sweet end to a sweet evening as it went down very well indeed with the Baked Cheese Cake.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Portuguese Wine Dinner at Donnybrook Fair


Portuguese Wine dinner at Donnybrook Fair

The Restaurant @ Donnybrook Fair concludes its popular series of wine dinners for 2011 by welcoming Portuguese winemaker Nuno Mira do Ó from Companhia das Quintas to host a wine dinner on Wednesday 30th November at 7.45pm.  Nuno will introduce wines from estates located in the Douro, Beira, Lisboa, Bucelas, Palmela and Alentejo regions.  The wines featured on the night will be paired with a delicious four course menu, specially designed for the occasion.  The evening is priced at €60 per person / €100 for two. 

Nuno´s wines are frequently awarded with medals in international competitions, and high scores in the international press.  Companhia das Quintas is one of Portugal´s largest wine and spirits companies with seven different wineries spread across the country.  The group has a passion for creating estate-grown top quality wines, based on the best Portuguese grape varieties and showcasing characteristics of each terroir.

Join us in The Restaurant @ DF on 30th November for what promises to be a fantastic night of delicious food and fine wines!

Booking Details (Limited places available):
DATE: Wednesday 30th November                      TIME: 19.45        
COST: €60 per person / €100 for 2 people   
LOCATION: The Restaurant @ Donnybrook Fair, 1st Floor, 89 Morehampton Road, D4
T: 01 614 4849

Monday, October 17, 2011

ELECTRIC EXCELLENCE


ELECTRIC EXCELLENCE


From sauerkraut to PX: the alpha and the omega of my meal at Electric last night. And there was quite a lot of good stuff in between as well.

The cathedral’s shadow in the near distance by the river, the lights twinkling in the trees outside and reflections galore as the Friday traffic rolled up and down the Mall were all part of the view from this comfortable upstairs room, a busy buzzy spot, where the welcome (we were met downstairs) and the service are friendly and efficient.

Nobody hanging around your table but they do keep an eye on things and, for instance, pop over with more water when they see you running down and put out a bowl of warm water if you are eating anything sticky.

And I was. My starter was Bodice & Cabbage: roast pork ribs with sauerkraut & chilli (€7.00). I’ve had this before so knew what to expect. It is just terrific: tasty meat with well made sauerkraut livened up by the chilli. If you haven’t tried this, I’d recommend it. HN enjoyed her Pan-fried brie with basil, Serrano ham, tomato and mint chutney (€ 8).

My main course was the Veal Bolognese with penne pasta & parmesan (€14). I rarely go Italian so was doing this for research! It was a very pleasant surprise indeed, the tiny minced pieces of the Bolognese (no shortage of them) perfectly complemented by the pasta. Very happy with this perfect combination.

HN and CL both went for the Ballea lamb shoulder & fillet with butternut squash, rosemary & gravy (19.50). Must admit I was a bit jealous when I saw the dishes but I was thrown a few samples of lamb and in any case the ladies were absolutely pleased with it, particularly the slow cooked shoulder. A tasty and substantial dish, the veg and sauce in perfect harmony with the meat.

Met Marambro Creek winemaker Brad Rey a weeks back when he visited Karwig Wines and so was delighted to see his Jip Jip Rocks Patdthaway 2009 Shiraz (€ 25) on the list. This lively Shiraz went down well with the lamb.

After the lamb and the pasta, we were all pretty full, so rounded off the evening in Electric, celebrating its first birthday this coming Thursday, with three glasses (between us!) of their Lustau PX (€4.50).