Located on the cornmarket in the heart of Wexford, and named after the Irish poet whose parents once lived here, the Thomas Moore Tavern lays claim to be Wexford's oldest pub and - although mainly a smart new build - parts of the building go back to the 13th century.
It is now owned and run by a well known local family, the Wrights, who totally revamped and extended the building to create a timelessly stylish and very comfortable refuge from the outside world. Following the re-opening by Breda Wright and her team in February 2011, the refurbished tavern has become one of the area's most popular casual dining destinations.
The Victorian bar retains many original features and, with its cosy stove and a walnut-panelled wall that pays homage to Irish literary figures including Thomas Moore himself, it is a pleasant spot to enjoy a drink or catch major sporting events on the big screen.
Customers can choose between relaxed meals in the bistro or a casual snack in the bar, where regular entertainment is also offered.
Head chef Kris Pilniak's Bistro Menu (shortened at lunchtime) offers a well-balanced choice of dishes that make good use of both local in-season foods (fresh fish sourced in Wexford and game from Wicklow are among the seasonal offerings) and more exotic ingredients, including swordfish. It works out at especially good value for lunch - and well-informed staff are happy to discuss the menu and advise on choices.
The Tavern caters well for or private functions, with both The Piano Bar and the Cellar Bar available for anything from birthday parties to corporate events and weddings - and the private rooftop restaurant, Spires, can also be booked. Offering panoramic views of Wexford Town, it caters for up to 50 guests for a sit down meal.
A fairly extensive wine list offers choices from around the world, with some available by the glass.