This great neighbourhood restaurant has earned a loyal following and, together with the more recently opened Ouzos Bar & Grill in Blackrock, they really fly the flag for Irish seafood – and for Irish beef too, as the main concession to non-seafood eaters is a range of prime dry-aged steaks from Co Carlow, supplied by master butcher Pat Caulfield and hand-cut to order in-house.
Behind a smart black and white frontage with large arched windows lies a relaxed and cosy interior, with booths to hide away in down at the back and good people-watching tables looking onto Dalkey's quaint main street at the front.
This Dublin restaurants range of menus offered is impressive, leading off with their speciality Great Crab & Lobster Feast, a keenly priced 2-course seafood menu offering excellent choices, with only modest supplements for lobster and surf’n’turf with fillet steak.
These people really know their seafood, most of which is not just Irish but caught locally – they are proud to inform customers that the brown crab, lobster and brown shrimp are caught between Sandycove and Arklow town by Ivan Toole, skipper of the MFV Lynn Catherine, for example, and that fresh fish comes from the fishermen of Dublin and Kilkeel in Co. Down.
A starter seafood platter (for two or four to share) is a great way to sample house specialities such as Boston shrimp cocktail shots and Salt & Pepper Calamari with spicy sweet chili jam.
Many of the dishes are old favourites – Dublin Bay prawn cocktail, potted crab & shrimp, Ouzos Fish & Chips, Ouzos Seafood Bake – which gives the dining experience a comfortably retro feel. A few vegetarian dishes are also offered and, like gluten-free options, highlighted by a symbol on the menu.
Don't forget to leave room for an excellent (and also delightfully retro) dessert, or some gorgeous Featherbed Farm artisan ice cream from County Wexford, or perhaps a cheese plate – all Irish, and described in enthusiastic detail on the menu.
The wine list has been compiled with similar enthusiasm to offer both quality and value, and service is warm and engagingly genuine.
While the à la carte is predictably pricey, the full range of menus offers good value and there is something for everybody – including children, who get an appealing menu which goes far beyond the usual chicken nuggets or sausages and chips, with proper treats like chargrilled 5 oz sirloin or popcorn shrimp & chips.