The Mill Restaurant

Eat & Stay

Restaurant with Rooms

2 euro For Cooking & Service Well Above Average A selection of establishments outside the standard categories that should enhance the discerning travellers experience of Ireland Denotes genuine Irish food culture, ie special Irish food products/companies/producers, and highlights the best places to shop for regional and artisan foods; the selection excludes obvious 'non-Irish' elements regardless of quality, eg ethnic restaurants and specialists in coffee, wine and other drinks, unless relevant to local production or history. Eat & Stay establishments are chosen for their commitment to showcasing local produce and Irish hospitality. Highly Recommended as a Special Place to Stay Outstanding Location, building or atmosphere Previous Georgina Campbell Guides Award Winner The "Best of the Best" - Only the very best establishments across various categories have been chosen for this accolade
Address:
The Mill Restaurant
Figart, Dunfanaghy , Letterkenny Co Donegal
website Contact The Mill Restaurant
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100%
12 votes
Tel: +353 74 913 6985

Please mention ireland-guide.com when enquiring.

Susan Alcorn and her husband Derek, who is the chef, have earned a dedicated following here, for the superb location, warm welcome and assured local ingredients led cooking - and they also offer great value.
  • Equestrian (nearby)
  • Fishing (Fly Fishing nearby)
  • Fishing (Sea Angling nearby)
  • Forest / Woodland with trails nearby
  • Garden Visits (nearby)
  • Golf nearby
  • Scuba Diving (nearby)
  • Surfing nearby
  • Walking - Hillwalking (recommended routes or guides available)
  • Water Sports
  • Broadband WI/FI
  • Broadband WI/FI (No Charge)
  • Budget Accommodation (under €100 for two)
  • Children's Baby Sitting Arranged
  • Dogs - good walking nearby (offlead)
  • Location - Beach <5km
  • Location - By a lake
  • Location - Peaceful
  • Location - Scenic
  • Location - Waterside
  • No Smoking Establishment
  • Romantic Venue
  • Contemporary Irish
  • Attractive Views
  • Coeliac Friendly
  • Informal
  • Old World / Traditional
  • Organic Produce used (mainly)
  • Romantic
  • Sunday Dining
  • Vegetarian Friendly (always at least 1 starter & 1 main course)

The Mill Restaurant

An ‘open secret’ destination that has attracted discerning visitors to the glorious north-west of Donegal for many years, the Alcorn family’s beautifully located restaurant with rooms is just outside Dunfanaghy on the shore of the New Lake, which is a special area of conservation.


It was the home of Susan Alcorn’s grandfather and, as they are a family of accomplished painters, the walls are hung with wonderful watercolours. Sitting comfortably against the backdrop of natural beauty they add an extra dimension for guests to enjoy and, with fresh flowers, soft lighting and some well-placed antiques, it is a place of character and atmosphere.


Susan and her husband Derek, who is the chef, have a dedicated following here and it is well earned. The location is superb, of course (and there are plenty of windows framing the views), but they also do pretty much everything just right themselves, extending warm hospitality and providing stylishly homely comforts, great food and drink  - along with very good value.


There’s a real sense of place about everything at The Mill, and especially the food. Ever since they opened in 1999, Derek’s menus have been a seasonal expression of the surrounding sea and landscape. Most ingredients are sourced within a ten mile radius and dishes like Leitermacaward Oysters & Home cured Salmon and Horn Head Dexter Beef (supplied by his brother, Thomas, who also produces Hereford beef) jointly tell the stories of family and place.


Sometimes the ingredients may be unusual or under-used - Irish rabbit, for example, and Horn Head Kid Goat which is supplied by Derek’s nephew, Richard - but the originality in the cooking is as much in the way ingredients are combined, and in the detail, rather than simply in the choice of main ingredients. Fish and seafood is well represented of course, mainly sourced from the great Donegal sea ports of Killybegs and Greencastle, but also from Mulroy Bay Mussels, and Ivan McElhinney of Dunfanaghy, who supplies shellfish, pollock and mackerel.


There's always been a welcome emphasis on vegetables and salads too, much of which which come from the brilliant An LAN Teo organic horticultural project at Killult, Falcarragh - it includes a one-acre glasshouse, which greatly extends the range of produce that can be supplied locally, and is interestingly introduced in the Supplier List.


Gorgeous desserts will probably include some based on seasonal fruit such as rhubarb brulée with langue de chat biscuits or plum fritters with glazed lemon rice and toffee ice cream, and there's a good Irish cheese plate served with onion marmalade - and perhaps a glass of dessert wine or port.


But the overall experience here is much more than the sum of its parts and, under Susan’s direction, the hospitality and service is exemplary too.


Seats 30; children welcome (high chair, childrens menu); air conditioning. D high season,Tue-Sun 7-9pm, Set D about €41 (+side dishes); house wine about €18, craft beers also offered; sc discretionary. Closed Mon in Jul-Aug & extra nights other months; closed mid Dec-mid Mar.


Accommodation


The individually decorated rooms are simple but stylish, with good beds and some antique pieces.


A new room, The Studio, was added in 2016. A lovely big room, romantically set up with a king size four poster bed and in-room roll top bath in addition to an en-suite power shower, it is in the studio where Susan’s grandfather used to paint and has a sitting area overlooking the drive and garden.


The cosy sitting room off the dining room is available for resident guests to relax in, with an open fire, and comfy big chairs and sofas.


Overnight guests will also have a delicious breakfast to look forward to - a lovely buffet of fruits, juices, cereals etc, hot dishes starring breakfast meats from the famed butchers McGettigans of Donegal Town and cooked perfectly to order and all the little treats of home-baked breads and preserves. (Breakfast 8.30-9.30am)

Rooms 7 (all en-suite & no-smoking, 2 shower only); children welcome (under 12s free in parents' room, cot available without charge, baby sitting arranged). B&B from €50 pps, ss €20 (The Studio, €75pps). Free broadband wi/fi; no pets. Garden; walking; cycling. Jul-Aug, open Tue-Sun. Limited opening in shoulder season (Apr, Fri & Sat; May, Jun & Sep-mid Oct, Wed-Sun; mid-end Oct Thu-Sun; Nov-mid Dec, Fri & Sun. Establishment closed mid Dec - mid Mar; re-opens for St Patrick's & Easter. Amex, MasterCard, Visa. abbreviations
Last Updated: 29-03-2016
Author: Georgina Campbell

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The Mill Restaurant - Dunfanaghy County Donegal
The Mill Restaurant - Dunfanaghy County Donegal
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N56 1km outside Dunfanaghy on Falcarragh road.

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