'Just Ask!' Restaurant of the Month for November - Olive Deli & Café , Skerries Co. Dublin

A stalwart of the characterful north Co Dublin fishing port of Skerries since 2005, Peter and Deirdre Dorrity's charming specialist food shop and café has always showcased a carefully selected range of artisan produce from Ireland and abroad - and, following expansion into the building next door a few years ago, they were able to create an impressive modern deli and add more seating, indoors and out. Thankfully the smart refurb did not cost Olive any of its charm - and, even more importantly, it’s never lost sight of its greatest USP, the quality and provenance of the ingredients used.

Inspired by the Farmers’ Market in Temple Bar, where the Dorritys ran a café before opening in Skerries, they ‘like to get the simple things right’ and Olive is renowned for its outstanding casual food, especially sandwiches, soups, salads, coffees and the beautiful baked goods made by Skerries baker Orla McMahon and in-house. Everything is based on quality, unprocessed foods and, say the Dorritys (quite rightly), “That’s why our food tastes so good”.

It really is all about the ingredients at Olive and full credit is given to valued suppliers. Fresh seafood comes from Skerries based Emmet Dillon while local butcher Aidan O’Brien supplies free range chicken for chargrilling in-house, and also the beef and pork that’s slow cooked overnight for their famous daily changing ‘hot roll’. Arbutus Bakery in Cork supply their wonderful sourdough bread, a perfect match for paté that’s handmade by On the Pigs Back in The English Market. Regulars have their favourite speciality sandwiches - Gubbeen chorizo, aged manchego cheese and Arbutus sourdough bread, for example, and BLTs made with bacon from Vincent Ryan in Co. Meath, to 'create the best sandwiches possible' - all helped along by condiments like Mic’s chilli sauce and chutneys and mustards made by Hella Toolan in Rush and Filligans in Donegal.

Imaginative soups (Gubbeen chorizo, chickpea and spinach Spanish broth, perhaps) are made from scratch every day while other longtime favourites include their own range of homemade hummus, along with basil pesto, olive tapenade and sweet Harissa pepper oil. Other enduring favourites include the seasonal salads that are freshly prepared daily for the deli such as lentil & roasted vegetables, or lemon & mint couscous and mixed bean salad.

Great drinks too, of course, including Wall & Keogh loose leaf teas, Palombini coffee - and smoothies made with kale grown nearby in Rush, perhaps, or wheatgrass from Donegal…

Olive set the bar high when opening in 2005 and, true to its original mission, it’s still championing artisan foods - and remains a must-visit daytime destination for food lovers visiting this charming seaside town today.

Address: 86 Strand Street, Skerries, Co Dublin
Tel: 01 849 0310
Email: deirdre@olive.ie
Open: 8.30am-5.30pm (Sun from 9am)
Web: https://olive.ie/

Sample Menu available here.

All baked products are by Orla Mc Mahon, Skerries,
Le Patisserie and in house.

Wine from Red Island wine, Skerries.

Free range chicken, Beef, Pork from Aidan O’Brien’s, Skerries.

Cheese- Sheridans Cheesemongers

Ham & Bacon – Vincent Ryan Co Meath

Chorizo- Gubbeen Smokehouse, Co Cork

Tuna – Ortiz line caught tuna

Eggs – Achmor Free Range eggs, Balcuunin Skerries

Vegetables – McCormacks fruit and veg, Rush

Pate – On the Pigs Back, Cork English Market

We chargrill our free range chicken inhouse.

We slow roast our pulled pork over night.

Sourdough bread – Arbutus Bakery, Cork; Tartine, Dublin

Olives- Real Olive Company, English Market, Cork.

We also use Mic’s Chilli sauce and our chutneys and mustards are made by Hella Toolan, Rush and Filligans, Donegal.

Coffee Palombini, Italy.

“Just Ask!” is a public awareness campaign that aims to encourage consumers when eating out to look for information on where the food (particularly meat) on their plate comes from, and encourages chefs to provide this information on their menus. The programme supports both large and smaller artisan suppliers, encouraging both Irish diners and visitors from abroad to support restaurants that are in turn supporting their suppliers.

Here at Georgina Campbell Guides we have always been avid supporters of the ‘eat local’ concept, and we enjoy reading menus that have a real sense of place. The dining experience is greatly enriched by knowing that the food on your plate is inspired by the produce and traditions of the area, and sourced nearby – and we would love to see more chefs sharing that precious information with their guests. If you are a visitor to the area, learning a little about local food and the people who produce it adds a special extra dimension to the visit – and, for residents, it reinforces a natural pride in the good things of their locality and makes a meal all the more enjoyable.

So, we are delighted by the high standard of menus that continue to be submitted for our ‘ “Just Ask!” Restaurant of the Month Competition’, menus that really speak of the best of Irish foods – and the dedication of both the people who make them, and the chefs who select them to create wonderful dishes with real Irish flavour for our enjoyment.


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