Showing posts with label The Commons Inn. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Commons Inn. Show all posts

Thursday, February 14, 2019

The Commons Inn for Fresh and Local

The Commons Inn for Fresh and Local

Tasty wings with Louisiana sauce
If you’re in the Blackpool area and looking for a meal, why not try the Commons Inn, now over thirty years in business. Michael Fawcett is the chef here and has a passion for fresh products and loves working with products from the English Market Cork. Mike, originally from Victoria Australia, found his home in Cork City and has been living here for 17 years.

We had the opportunity to try their Early Bird recently and enjoyed it. Nothing too highfalutin here, just good produce well handled and neatly presented and served with a smile.

Wings are a standard in many Irish hotels and bars and I started off with the Commons Buffalo Chicken Wings: Crisp chicken wings, tossed in Frank’s Louisiana hot sauce and served with Cashel blue cheese dip and celery sticks. Good quality chicken and that sauce was superb.

CL picked the Classic Caesar Salad of Cos lettuce, crisp bacon lardons, garlic herb croutons, parmesan cheese, creamy Caesar dressing. Lots of bacon but well assembled and, may I say, well demolished! 

Other starters on the Early Bird include Chef’s Soup of the Day, served with freshly made brown bread, and also the Chilli and Lime Battered Tiger Prawns.

Hard to beat a burger in a bar (the dining area is at one end of the long bar) and the Black Angus House Burger consists of Streaky bacon, aged cheddar, beer battered onion ring, baby gem lettuce, vine tomato, ramekin of house relish, toasted pretzel bun & chunky chips. The pretzel bun might be a bit unusual but the whole assembly hit the spot.

O’Connell's Salmon, with Tender stem broccoli, sautéed baby potatoes, spiced chorizo butter, was another good plateful. Other mains available are Classic Chicken Maryland , Irish 10oz Black Angus Sirloin Steak  (€5.00 supplement), Roast of the Day  and Thai Red Roasted Vegetable Curry.
Our mission was to try out the Early Bird but I must admit we failed at the final hurdle. The tempting line-up of desserts read: Bread & Butter Pudding Vanilla custard; Warm Belgian Chocolate Brownie Warm chocolate sauce, chocolate chip ice cream; Selection of Irish Artisan Ice Cream Crisp Tuile basket & strawberries; Dessert of the Day, Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Prices are reasonable: 2 courses €21 or 3 courses €25 all day, every day.

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Monday, April 17, 2017

Excellent Evening Meal at The Commons Inn

Excellent Evening Meal at The Commons Inn
It was a busy night at the Commons Inn, some big groups (some local, some traveling) to be catered for but the pressure didn’t show in the restaurant which was an oasis of calm as we enjoyed an excellent meal indeed.

Canadian chef Arthur Van Leeuwen runs a fairly tight menu here - he doesn’t try to cover every single taste - and the concentration is on quality and it shows on the well presented plates. And the regular menu is supplemented by the specials. You’ll note these on the blackboard and, conveniently, there is also an insert in the menu itself. 

Locally sourced fresh ingredients are used here (Paul O'Connell for meats, Atlantis Seafood for fish, and AllFresh for veg are main suppliers) and local craft brewers such as Black’s and 9 White Deer are also supported.

Buffalo Wings (Niagara style from NY) and BBQ Slow Roasted Baby Back Ribs (with the chef's Bourbon sauce) are popular on the menu and, from previous experience, I know these two starters are excellent. This time though we went for something different.
Sea Bream

Local Craft
CL choose the Home-made Fish Cakes with Chilli Sauce and salad from the specials. And it was a real special. The cakes were packed with tasty fish and she reckoned they were the best fish cakes she has come across in a long time.

And it was all good at my side of the table as well as I tucked into the Cajun Chicken and Bacon Salad which was well presented in a “container” of cucumber strips. Both salads were excellent, the leaves as fresh as could be and well dressed.

Their Irish Hereford beef steaks are aged 35 days. The Commons over the years is well known too for excellent lamb and I was looking at that until I got a tip that rib-eye was on. The beef, on mashed potato, was superb, tender, full of flavour and served with sautéed mushrooms and onions, and crispy onion rings. There were vegetables, chips, and salad on the side as well, for sharing!
Fish Cakes
CL stayed with the specials for her mains: Pan-seared Bream with baby crushed potato and spring onion. The whole fish was on the bone and cooked to perfection. Other specials included the Jameson Sauce Commons Burger (as part of the Cork Whiskey festival) and Vegetarian Risotto. 

Regular House Favourites include Roast of the Day, Classic Chicken Maryland, Beer Battered Cod (with chips of course), Steak Sandwich, and Oriental Stir Fry.

It was early Saturday evening; the bar was busy, the restaurant was busy and so were the function rooms. This is a popular spot for locals and hotel residents, for drop-ins too. And the food, and the friendly service, is one of the major factors in keeping The Commons up there as it approaches its 30th anniversary.
Cajun Chicken & Bacon