Just Ask Restaurant of the Month for August - The King's Head

The “Just Ask!” Restaurant of the Month winner for August is The King's Head, Galway

The King's Head, GalwaySteeped in centuries of history and atmosphere, The King’s Head is a destination food pub in the centre of Galway. Looking out onto busy High Street, the comparatively small frontage belies its extent over three floors, and it could be said to be the original super-pub.

At over eight hundred years old, this popular bar caters to a broad audience to fill its seats and does so with style, offering free live music, big screen sports, lunchtime comedy and good fresh food. It is dark and atmospheric, and the original medieval fireplace always has a welcoming blaze.

Over the last 25 years The King’s Head has had the benefit of professional management expertise and a personal touch from the Grealish family, who turned it into the success story it is today - and, 11 years ago, acquired one of the city’s most famous restaurants, The Malt House, which was next door.

With their contemporary sister restaurant in an adjoining premises (and supplying some of the best fare), the shared food philosophy was always based on a firm commitment to a menu underpinned by conscientiously sourced Irish and artisan ingredients – or, as they put it, “...pub food, only better!”

Recently, Paul and Mary Grealish have made some major changes. This summer saw the closure of The Malt House and, just one week later, its re-opening as The Chop House - the name as much a tongue-in-cheek reference to the history of the King's Head as suggestive of the menu to expect.

It is now an integrated operation: two reclaimed wood-clad dining rooms on either side have a clear view through to The King's Head, and the former courtyard makes a charming beer garden strung with twinkling coloured lights.

The menus are short and to the point, offering many gastropub classics from Caesar salad to lobster and chips. As it is of such historic interest, 'The Head' is a popular tourist destination and there’s traditional Irish stew, oysters on the half shell with dillisk scones and a pint of creamy Guinness for a truly Irish treat.

An ongoing commitment to sourcing the best local produce is still very evident: chicken from the Friendly Farmer in Athenry features, as does corned beef and sausages from Colleran’s Butchers across the street, smoked Connemara lamb from McGeough's of Oughterard, Killeen goat's and Cashel Blue cheeses, Linalla ice cream from across the bay in Co Clare and, of course, Griffin’s bread from the famous bakery next door.

With Brendan Keane, head chef at the Malt House for 15 years, back at the helm, the cooking is rock steady. Despite the name of the new restaurant, fish is given equal billing to the more meaty Chop House options and drink pairings have been carefully considered: while there are dishes like brill on the bone with summer vegetables that demand a chilled glass of white wine, others such as brisket and smoked bacon toastie beg for a pint of craft beer beside it - and there is plenty of both to keep everybody happy.

The King’s Head has come a long way since the days when the food offering here, as elsewhere, was just a bowl of soup with a ham sandwich - and it’s a major asset to Galway city as well as a great credit to the Grealish family.


“Great local ingredients from great local suppliers combined with friendly service at super affordable prices”

Chef Brendan Keane thrives on sourcing locally and tends to let the food do the talking. Brendan has forged relationships with some great local suppliers and change menus as new fresh ingredients become available. Good Food Ireland membership is well deserved recognition.

Front of house is run by Joan Grealish and her team

Our Suppliers

Fáilte & Welcome to The Kings Kitchen at The Kings Head - the old pub with new ideas on food. We tend not to stray very far – our sandwich bread & ciabattas come from Griffins Bakery next door, sausages from Colleran’s Butchers down the street, beer for our fish batter from Galway Hooker beer. Our Blaas, however, do come from Waterford.

Other notes on ingredients – we only use free range eggs, our beef is always Irish, seaweed comes from Westport, smoked salmon from the Burren, and fish & vegetables as local as we can find them.

In other words, pub food, only better! Ag freastal ort le bia folláin, úr agus de dhéantús baile.

Opening Hours: Sunday-Thursday 11.30am-8pm / Friday 11.30am-8pm / Saturday 10.30am-6pm


These are sample menus – which may vary slightly from time to time due to seasonality.
Specials and value options available daily.
Gluten free options denoted by *, vegetarian options by v.

(Served ‘til 12:30)

Free Range Scrambled Eggs€5.95
On Toasted Griffin’s Bread, with your choice of Colleran’s Bacon, Burren Smoked Salmon or Falafel plus Tea or Coffee

Soups & Sandwiches
Sandwiches available on brown, white, gluten free bread or a wrap

Homemade Soup of the Day *v€4.65
served with our very own brown bread

Sandwich Value Special€7.25
Soup sampler and deli sandwich on Griffins bread, with tea or filter coffee

Chicken, Bacon & Brie Melt€7.25
Toasted Griffins ciabatta with breast of chicken, bacon, melted brie and a plum relish

Chop House Seafood Chowder€5.95
Fresh chunky cod, salmon and haddock cream chowder served with dilisk scone

Toasted Sandwich Special€7.75
Ham, cheese, tomato and onion with chips or soup

Avocado & Ham Quesadillas€8.00
with wild rocket, sweet chilli & tomato salsa, chips

The Kings Club Sandwich€8.50
Triple decker sandwich on brown bread with chicken, bacon, lettuce, tomato and marie rose sauce with chips

Open Smoked Salmon Sandwich€10.95
Burren Smokehouse Smoked Salmon, red onion, wild rocket, capers & avocado on homemade brown bread

‘Best of Irish’ Cold Platter€14.95
Collerans Corned Beef & suckling pig, McGeoughs air-dried smoked Connemara lamb, St Tola’s Goat Cheese, Cashel Blue cheese, pickled beetroot salad, Griffins crusty bread & Ballymaloe relish

Main Courses

Bengali Spring Vegetable Curry€9.00
Seasonal vegetables in a mild curry sauce with wholegrain rice & minted Glenisk Yoghurt

Chicken Wings€8.95
Marinated chicken wings in bbq sauce served with blue cheese dressing and chips

Falafel Salad *v€9.50
Chickpea falafel with grilled pitta bread, tzatziki and hummus dressing

Pan Fried Hake*€12.50
Fillet of hake with sauté baby potatoes, chorizo, char and basil pesto

St Tola’s Goat’s Cheese Quiche€10.00
Free range eggs, spinach, red onion served with a beetroot and walnut salad

Beef Lasagne€9.95
Homemade beef lasagne, served with chips, salad and coleslaw

Chilli Chicken Balti€10.95
Tender pieces of chicken breast in a tomato based curry sauce with wholegrain rice & minted Glenisk yoghurt

Fish & Chips€12.95
‘Catch of the day’ in a light Galway Hooker beer batter served with chips and mushy peas

Moules Frites€13.95
Steamed Galway Mussels with shallots, white wine & cream served with brown bread or chips

Traditional Irish Stew€14.95
Hearty Lamb, potato & vegetable stew

King Charles Burger€11.95
Waterford Blaa with homemade burger, bacon, cheddar, lettuce, tomato and mayo with chips

Crab Claws€14.95
Pan-fried Malbay Crab Claws in garlic & chilli butter with brown bread

Rib-Eye Steak€13.95
8oz Rib-Eye Steak grilled to your liking with chips and onion rings served with garlic butter or pepper sauce.

Irish Tapas (to share)€15.95
Homemade goujons of chicken, Colleran’s cocktail sausages, onion rings, vegetable samosas & chips with a selection of dips.

Oysters & Guinness€15.95
1/2 dozen Oysters on the half shell, dillisk scone & a pint of creamy Guinness


Bucket of chips€2.95
Garlic Bread€2.50
Side Salad€3.00
Mushy Peas or Baked Beans€2.00
Homemade Brown Bread€1.80
Onion Rings€2.95


Poached Pear Pavlova€5.50
Served with vanilla ice cream

Warm Chocolate Fondant€5.50
Served with vanilla ice cream & chocolate sauce

Lemon Meringue€5.50
Served with fruit coulis

Chocolate Caramel Cheesecake*€5.50
Served with cream

Trio of Ice Cream€5.50
with peanut butter cookie*

We've a fantastic cocktail list that changes constantly - drop in & have our mixologist whip up something special - just for you!



Just Ask!” is a public awareness campaign that aims to encourage consumers when eating out to look for information on where the food (particularly meat) on their plate comes from, and encourages chefs to provide this information on their menus. The programme supports both large and smaller artisan suppliers, encouraging both Irish diners and visitors from abroad to support restaurants that are in turn supporting their suppliers.

Here at Georgina Campbell Guides we have always been avid supporters of the ‘eat local’ concept, and we always enjoy reading menus that have a real sense of place. The dining experience is greatly enriched by knowing that the food on your plate is inspired by the produce and traditions of the area, and sourced nearby – and we would love to see more chefs sharing that precious information with their guests.  

If you are a visitor to the area, learning a little about local food and the people who produce it adds a special extra dimension to the visit – and, for residents, it reinforces a natural pride in the good things of their locality and makes a meal all the more enjoyable.

So, we are delighted by the high standard of menus that continue to be submitted for our ' “Just Ask!” Restaurant of the Month Competition', menus that really speak of the best of Irish foods – and the dedication of both the people who make them, and the chefs who select them to create wonderful dishes with real Irish flavour for our enjoyment.


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