Patrick and Helena Keenan’s gorgeous restaurant with rooms is in a stunning shoreside location, looking right up Lough Ramor - where little fishing boats and wildlife activity around pretty wooded islets are a constant source of interest.
It’s mainly a new build and, while it may still look a little raw and ‘nouveau’ from the road, once inside you’ll find a stylishly furnished foyer and bar/reception room and, beyond it, a spacious contemporary restaurant filled with shimmering light from the lough, which laps the shore just at the end of the garden. Even before you eat a mouthful, it’s easy to see why this has become a destination restaurant drawing diners from a very wide area – and the food is really good.
Chef Conor McCann's seasonal menus offer a tantalising selection of quite classical dishes - with choices like subtle fennel & onion soup and seared scallops with pressed ham terrine among the starters, and mains including Kettyle beef (Irish angus sirloin or fillet in the evening, or roast ribeye for Sunday lunch) or hake with ratatouille vegetables (and other seasonal accompaniments such as baby new potatoes, leek & shallots and a warm tomato vinaigrette available too), you just want to try everything.
While you decide, there’s an irresistible selection of freshly baked breads with tapenade and flavoured oils to dip – and maybe even a little taster portion of something delicious, like a pretty pea soup with bacon, too.
The cooking is spot-on, with every dish tasting as good as it looks – which is very good indeed, with imaginative touches to lift the classicism yet no cheffy excesses to distract from the good food.
Unusual, refined side dishes featuring seasonal vegetables are a highlight, also beautiful desserts that you're unlikely to find elsewhere, such as a carpaccio of pineapple with pink peppercorns – and chocolate brownie with white chocolate & hazelnut chips, ground pistachio & honeycomb ice cream (“best ever!”).
Add reasonably priced wines, good coffee and efficient service to the mix and it becomes obvious why this lovely restaurant has become such a hit.
Accommodation is also available, in eight spacious en-suite rooms; all are furnished to a very high standard and five have lough views. A delightful place to stay and explore the treats that this beautiful area has to offer. [Registration pending.]