The O’Donnell family has run Danny Minnie’s since 1962, and a visit is always a special treat. There’s nothing about the exterior as seen from the road to prepare first-time visitors for the atmosphere of this remarkable restaurant.
Hidden behind a frontage of overgrown creepers, a surprise: once through the door you are suddenly surrounded by antiques and elegantly appointed candle-lit tables and on summer evenings there may even be a harpist playing.
Brian O’Donnell is a well known chef and his cooking matches the surroundings well - fine, with imaginative saucing, but not at all pompous.
Menus are presented in both Irish and English, on a wide-ranging à la carte menu; seafood stars in the main courses - lobster and other shellfish, availability permitting - but there is also a strong selection of meats including Donegal mountain lamb, typically served with honey, garlic and rosemary gravy, and Donegal beef, served various ways including classic Beef Wellington.
Vegetables are a strength and gorgeous desserts, such as cardamom and lime pannacotta with a refreshing rhubarb and strawberry compôte, create an appropriately delicious finale.
And the staff are lovely too - attentive waitresses provide warm and friendly service. There’s nowhere quite like Danny Minnie’s, winner of the Guide’s Atmospheric Restaurant of the Year in 2000.