Called down to Midleton last Tuesday evening to sample the food at the Greenroom, the new all day late night cafe under the ample wing of the adjacent Sage Restaurant. Spotted the 12 Mile Tapas board and immediately saw familiar producers of quality including Woodside Farm, Ardsallagh and Tom Clancy. Five tapas on the board, so we ordered all five.
Next question was what to drink. Easily answered by looking at the next board. Lots of local beers here and also Stonewell cider. Could hardly drink all the beers so settled for the Barefoot Bohemian Pilsner from Eight Degrees and two new Cork beers, both pale ales, the Mountain Man Green Bullet and the Kinsale Pale Ale, each dangerously drinkable!
The tapas are top class, all the dishes perfectly executed and, at seven euro each, very good value. Take the humble Organic courgette and apple fritters with dehydrated goat yoghurt. Didn’t sound the most promising of the five but the tangy yoghurt made the fritters sing.
The Organic baby carrot and Ardsallagh goat cheese with organic leaves and pickled beetroot was another successful combination of taste, colour, flavour and texture. While the cooking here is creative, the food is allowed to speak for itself and this was perhaps best illustrated by the Woodside mini Pork Pie with peas and gravy. The pork flavour and texture were incredible.
The monkfish, coated in the most delicate batter and served with crispy bacon and organic roast garlic aioli, was lyrically light, crunchy and gorgeous and probably CL’s favourite.
For me, the outstanding bite was the first one into those Thomas Clancy free range chicken livers with sourdough and salsa. Honest food so well handled all the way to the table.
The dessert, Red Velvet Cappuccino cake with Bailey’s Ice Cream, was so smooth and seemed designed to put us into a good mood. But, after those brilliant tapas, we were happily already in that zone!
All in all then, honest food, flawlessly cooked, just perfect. And obviously widely appreciated as the Greenroom was more or less full.
Sage itself was also full. It has gained some extra seating and a different entrance (via the courtyard) after the recent building works that gave us the Greenroom. And the local producers are lauded here in Sage and not just on the tables. On one of the walls there is an excellent photo display of the producers going about their daily work. Well done to Kevin and Réidín for their dedication to their local suppliers!
While it is full steam ahead for Sage, the recently opened Greenroom too has been finding itself quite busy in these early days. It opens at nine and, during the morning, you can pop in for a freshly ground coffee and a freshly baked treat. At lunch time, you’ll have great choices of Salads and Sandwiches and, in the evening, the tapas come into their own.
The new Greenroom, they call it Sage’s little sister, is also proving useful for a pre-meal drink for those booked into Sage or maybe waiting for a table. And, when the sun shines, the courtyard outside is abuzz.
Opening hours: Tue - Sun: 9:00 am - 11:00 pm.
Address: 8 Main St, Midleton, Co. Cork.
Phone: (021) 463 9682Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/www.sagerestaurant.ie