ONES TO WATCH - NEW OPENINGS IN 2013 - 10 OF THE BEST
Recession or no recession, the last few years have been marked by a steady stream of exciting new openings. While the cities, especially Dublin, are undoubtedly faring best, there are good things happening all over the country and these are just ten of the new businesses that have especially impressed us over the last year - and for which we have high hopes in the future.
Clashganny House, Co Carlow - Newcomer of the Year
Robert and Karen White’s impressive restaurant is just a hundred yards from the Clashganny Lock, providing yet another reason to visit this stunning beauty spot as soon as possible
Browns in Town, Derry City, Co Londonderry
A smart-casual younger sister to Derry’s leading dining destination, Browns Restaurant & Champagne Lounge, this city centre venue gives off all the right vibes with its chic, confidently understated contemporary décor and well-priced menus offering seasonality and stylish informality
A new star is born at this relaxed Lagan-side restaurant, where Stephen Toman and Alain Kerloc'h merge stylish modern ingredients-led food and impeccable service with a laid-back vibe - making this one of the most exciting dining rooms in the country
The Vintage Kitchen, Dublin
Sister restaurant to Portobello’s popular Seagrass, The Vintage Kitchen follows the same appealing MO of great cooking, superb value and a no-corkage BYO policy. Short menus brim with the best of Irish ingredients and, despite the casual setting, there’s some seriously stylish cooking going on.
The Black Pig Wine Bar & Café, Kinsale, Co Cork - Wine Award of the Year
Formerly of Ely Wine Bar (Ely Place, Dublin), Siobhan Waldron and Gavin Ryan hit the ground running when they opened this superb wine and artisan 'tapas' bar in 2013
The Cloister Restaurant & Bar, Ennis, Co Clare
Dermot and Noreen Fetton’s welcoming dining destination is within the atmospheric 13th century Ennis Friary cloistral buildings, with good food from the well known Clare chef Paddy ‘Chowder Champion’ Collins - who values the quality ingredients of the locality and is not afraid of simplicity
Clare Island Lighthouse, Co Mayo
If an island stay is the ultimate escape, a stay in a lighthouse at the northern tip of a mountainous island four miles off the rugged west coast of Ireland should fulfil the dream very nicely. Especially when the island was once home to the pirate queen, Gráinne O'Malley
Samphire at Waterside Hotel, Donabate, Co Dublin
Named after the samphire that grows on the seashore right on the restaurant’s doorstep, many guests travel specially to sample Head Chef Tom Walsh’s cooking, which he describes as ‘classical French cuisine with a modern Irish twist’.
Finn’s Table, Kinsale, Co Cork
The closure of John and Julie Finn’s much-loved restaurant Dillon’s was a big loss to Timoleague, but it has proved to be Kinsale’s gain since they opened their new venture, Finn’s Table, in spring 2013 - and moved effortlessly into the top rank of a very competitive class
Firehouse Bakery etc, The Delgany, Co Wicklow
Stylishly renovated, the former Delgany Inn houses several independent businesses operating jointly as The Delgany – together, Romany Stone Restaurant, Firehouse Bakery, The Delgany Grocer and The Bungalow florist and gift shop make an enticing go-to destination
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