Restaurant Reviews from Grumpy

Status: Guru

Credibility Score:
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No. of Reviews: 55

Member Since: 16 April 2007

Last Visit: 16 May 2017

The Best Restaurant

Zen restaurant

89 Upper Rathmines Road, Dublin 6, Rathmines, Dublin, Area Code: Dublin 6

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Cuisine:
Asian

Price Range:

Good
116 reviews

Reviewed 19th September 2014 ( visited 18th September 2014 )

As usual the food was terrific. The Meat Sung (spicy minced pork with lettuce boats), twice fried duck and monkfish with ginger and scallions were were well cooked and seasoned. The boiled rice was perfect. The other starter was undercooked doughy fried dim sung which was inedible. Pity about that. The wine list is a bit pricy but they have a very decent Temperanillo for €25.
Most Visited Restaurant

Zen restaurant

89 Upper Rathmines Road, Dublin 6, Rathmines, Dublin, Area Code: Dublin 6

View on Map

Cuisine:
Asian

Price Range:

Good
116 reviews

Reviewed 19th September 2014 ( visited 18th September 2014 )

As usual the food was terrific. The Meat Sung (spicy minced pork with lettuce boats), twice fried duck and monkfish with ginger and scallions were were well cooked and seasoned. The boiled rice was perfect. The other starter was undercooked doughy fried dim sung which was inedible. Pity about that. The wine list is a bit pricy but they have a very decent Temperanillo for €25.
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Darwins
80 Aungier Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

Went here last night on special this weekend only offer: 3 courses for €29. Normally €42. Had Calamari, New York Striplion and Cheesecake.All were great except the steak which is usually€27.50 on its own. Although cooked to order it was chewy and gristly. I suspect the were getting rid of scrag ends of meat by selling them off cheap. The wine list was adequate if limited and the Irish coffee to finish was fine. Service was friendly but slow. Unfortunately we were seated next to a table of ugly noisy Americans the women of which in particular brayed like donkeys. Perhaps a discreet word from the management to tone it down would have helped. Lesson: 1. Don't buy cheap steak 2. Avoid Americans.

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The Vintage Kitchen
7 Poolbeg St, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

First time here. BYOB Policy means fine wine which was matched with fine food. My chilli risotto was a triumph. Whole spring chicken really good. My companions were equally impressed. Recommended.

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57 The Headline
57 Clanbrassil Street Lower, Portobello, Dublin

The Headli9ne has been transformed over the last couple of years into an Aladdins cave of craft beers and quality spirits. I met my partner for a pre -prandial libation in the groundfloor bar. He had a pint of Carrick lager which went down very well. I had a flavoursome and aromatic Teeling's snall batch whiskey recommended by our genial host which was spot on. We then repaired upstairs to the comfortable and spacious restaurant. I started with fried calamari cooked to perfection accompanied by little gem lettuce, pepper mousse, caeser dressing and delicious slices of warm fresh beetroot, which were not on the menu, but nontheless were a very welcome addition. He had chicken liver pate with an unctious cherry and port jelly served with toasted brioch. The generous dollop I stole from his plate was scrunptious. We both opted for pan fried hake served in a cream broth reclining on a bed of herby mash potatoe. It proved a wise choice: A combination of well chosen ingredients topped of by perfectedly cooked fish. We matched this feast with a very drinkable house merlot. The service was friendly, efficent and nonintrusive which is how I like it. All this was availed of on a menupsages voucher costing just €39 which is a steal. Great drinks, great food, whats not to like? Get in there.

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Meghna Tandoori
8-12 Terenure Place, Dublin 6, Terenure, Dublin

A couple of years ago this was a busy bustling place with friendly efficient service. The food was very good with a particularly delicious Korma. How times have changed! Last night it was almost empty with silent and painfully slow service. The food was bland and thereboring. two of us started wit Sami Kebabs, on tuna the other lamb. The tuna was from a tin and both appeared as mini burgers with the tasts and texture of cardboard. Mu lamb passanda did not have its characteristic creamy yellow sauce and there was no hint of almonds and no flaked nuts on top. What I got was chewy pieces of lamb in a mild curry sauce. My partners chicken jalfreise was bland and a poor relation to its usually fiery self. All n all a bad food day. No wonder it was empty.

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The Winding Stair Restaurant
40 Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1 , City Centre North, Dublin

Went here with my partner on Friday .Chairs not very comfortable but cushion was forthcoming for my bad back without demur. Service efficient and friendly. My starter of potted rabbit with toasted soda bread was so so. partners potted crab with toasted brown bread was delicious. My main of fillet of whiting was in my book the star of the evening. I love whiting and this was fresh and perfectly cooked reclining on a bed of colcannon. My partners poached smoked haddock on a bed of herby mash was very well recieved. Both mains were accompanied by nicely dressed salad leaves. We had a drinkable bottle of temperanillo for €25 which was a mistake as this as this meal deserved something better. All in all a lovely meal in a acongenial atmosphere. Recommended.

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Diwali Indian Restaurant
Unit 1, Castle House, South Great Georges Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

There were 3 of us booked for 7.30 seated at 8.15. They seemed to have trouble getting rid of inebriated early birders. Service was painfully slow and oily. Place was jammed solid with far too many tables. Had to stand several times to allow waiters access to other diners. Food was usual Christmas mush shoveled out to undiscerning drunks. My lamb biryani was chunks of tough and stringy meat packed into what looked like a sugar bowl with rice accompanied by an insipid sauce in a shallow metal dish which had earlier featured with chutney and chopped onion alongside the popodoms. Indeed there seemed to be a shortage of dishware as we had to ask for plates and cutlery early on. Our resident expert on Indian cuisine judged his chicken Jalfresi to be very ordinary and bland. The third member of our party has already submitted a rave review which shows there is no accounting for taste. Most places at Christmas just lash out any old rubbish to a captive audience so it is not a good time to review. I may return to see if Diwali can produce a decent meal but for no it must be a thumbs down.

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Camden Kitchen
3A Camden Market, Grantham Street, Dublin 2, Camden Street, Dublin

This was a very mixed experience. You could say it was a tale of potato's. We both started with potato and smoked haddock croquets served with a slice of smoked salmon. The croquets were made of shaped mashed potato in breadcrumbs. Neither of us could detect any smoked haddock. The salmon was fine but we had to ask for a wedge of lemon. The quite ordinary mashed potato reappeared as part of my main course. My partner ordered a side dish of sautee potato's which consisted of a small plate of halved baby potato's which looked and tasted suspiciously like the watery yokes sold in my local discount store for 39 cent a bag. These were €3.50 and were uneaten. Other gripes were a scant wine list mostly consisting mainly of more expensive choices and an overly creamy risotto which was well on the way to becoming a rice pudding. On the plus side my roast chicken was excellent and my partners hake was perfectly cooked even if the portion was a bit miserly. The highlight of the evening for me was a luscious chocolate fondue with vanilla ice cream. My partners blue Cashel cheese was in prime condition. Overall, it was a good meal but not a great one. Must try harder.

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Sawadee Thai
94 Terenure Road East, Dublin 6, Dublin 6w, Terenure, Dublin

I started with an old favorite, Chicken Satay. Tender pieces of chicken on skewers smothered in a luscious peanut sauce. Lovely! We both had stir fries, Mine was beef in oyster sauce his chicken. Both were very tasty. All this was accompanied by perfect boiled rice and a very drinkable house red. You can't go wrong here.

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Firepit
40 Aungier Street, City Centre South, Dublin

Lovely burgers here. Forget the rest. Grab a few cans or bottles of wine, head in and pig out.

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Alladins Cafe and Restaurant
129 Upper Leeson Street, Dublin 4, City Centre South, Dublin

Small place with very friendly service. BYOB which is great. Starters were an excellent hummus with very good pitta bread and tasty if a bit bland falafel with a nice sidesalad. Mains were a very tasty chilli chicken dish and Musaka. The musaka was an overcooked disaster. The potatos and minced lamb were rendered into a tasteless sludge. The aubergene did not make its presence felt. A mojor problem is that with a capacity of about 40 there is only one unisex toilet cubicle. For men of a certain age this is a complete no no. This was not a problem for me on Friday because there was only 12 diners at the time. I dread what it would be like with 40. The musaka was a chefs recommendation which in many places is a way of getting rid of leftovers. On this occasion it ruined what was otherwise a very good meal. The Campo Viejo 2008 reserva went down a treat.

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Rosie O' Gradys
282 Harolds Cross Road,, Harolds Cross, Harolds Cross, Dublin

Voucher deal 2 mains and sides + bottle of wine €25. The first question that entered my mind was : what sort of wine? Its got to be the usual insipid plonk that is usually rolled out in deals. As we supped excellent pints of the black stuff we perused the top shelf which contained wine. I spotted a Santa Rita 120 Cab Cav!! As any regular supermarket plonk swiller will tell you this is one of the better and more reliable brands on the market. There no way I told my partner that we are getting a bottle of that on a deal!! Rosies is a pub that serves food, not a so called gasto pub. The decor is quite basic and the wooden tables and chairs are serviceable. Speaking of service; this was friendly and effecient. I had a 10oz steak with chips, onion rings and salad leaves. The steak was cooked to order and was of good quality. My partners cod in beer batter with chips was declared to be fine. And lo and behold our bottle of red turned out to be a bottle of the aforementioned Santa Rita which lived up to its reputation for drinkability. Rosies does not pretend to be fine dining but if you want a decent steak, good fish and chips with a bottle goodish plonk for €25 for two people then you can't go wrong.

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Rolys Bistro
7 Ballsbridge Terrace, Dublin, Ballsbridge, Dublin

Rolys is a MOR food factory for the chatterati. Maybe they should rename it McRolys. Starters were supposed to be Thai fish cakes. What we got was fried salmon balls which tasted of nothing but salmon. My companion had grilled salmon for mains and afterwards remarked that the tea tasted of salmon. The grilled salmon was dry and overcooked. My Traditional lamb pie cosisted of a bowl of stew with a pastry lid. The stew was tasty, the lid a bit burnt. Deserts were a panna cota thingy in a bowl which tasted for all the world like a custard pie. The lemon tarte was afflicted by the dreaded soggy bottom and the filling appeared and tasted like lemon curd. Cofee was so-so, the house red is drinkable. Rolys is a good place to meet your bridge friends for a good old natter and OK food. Fine dining it is not!!!

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Buenos Aires Grill
Unit 2 Castle Way, Golden Lane, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

I have been here several times and have had varied experiences. Last Friday was the worst yet. We went on a voucher for a argentinian BBQ platter with a glass of wine. The food was not worth the voucher price, never mind the menu price. We got a couple of pieces of unidentifiable bland white fish, a couple of pieces of rubbery chicken, surprisingly tasty chorizo balls, oversweet almost meatless baby ribs and a piece of steak of the old boot variety. The chips were fine. The wine was a thin nasty concoction which may or may not have been a merlot. The service was very friendly and efficient. I Have had excellent steak here in the past but not on a voucher. Voucher vultures are served up small portions and tough meat. Be warned!!!

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Zen
89 Upper Rathmines Road, Dublin 6, Rathmines, Dublin

As usual the food was terrific. The Meat Sung (spicy minced pork with lettuce boats), twice fried duck and monkfish with ginger and scallions were were well cooked and seasoned. The boiled rice was perfect. The other starter was undercooked doughy fried dim sung which was inedible. Pity about that. The wine list is a bit pricy but they have a very decent Temperanillo for €25.

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Dada Restaurant
45 South William Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

The food here are generally of good quality. Chicken liver starter was well cooked and flavoursome. The prawn starter is made with rubbery prawns so avoid. Lamb shank perfect, monk fish tagine very good. Dada make big deal in promotion of BYOB then charge €5 corkage. I explained to to management lady that in Ireland BYOB means no corkage, but she claims that it always means corkage as in 20 years she has never known a restaurant to allow BYOB without corkage. This is just not true. Most restaurants will allow you to bring own wine if corkage is negotiated in advance even if cost is extortionate.

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Frite Haus
87 Camden St, Camden Street, Dublin

What can I say? My partner had black pudding and garlic sausage which was inedible. My venison version wasn't much better tasting mostly of grease and gristle. The sausages were encased in a bland dry bread roll with some red cabbagy stuff. The chips were standard catering stuff, edible but unexciting. If this is an example of Belgian cuisine then God help the Belgians, that all I can say!! Its cheap but not cheerful!!!

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Jerusalem Restaurant
77 Camden Street Lwr., Dublin 2, Camden Street, Dublin

This place is worth a visit especially if you like Hummus with everythin. My partner loved the hummus starter and my tiger praws ere fine. My mezza which included delicious lamb samosas and 2 lots of hummos wass very acceptable. The service is very friendly and effecient. There is one slight problem. Jerusalem advertises itself as BYOB which usually meeans no corkage. This is my second time here and I again spotted a charge on the bill of €2. When I queried the precise nature of this charge the staff admitted that this was a corkage charge. Naughty!!

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El Bahia Moroccan Restaurant
37 Wicklow Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

My second time here this month. My minor complaints were sorted as the waiter had read my last review. I started with liver again which came in manageable proportions and was cooked pink to order. My companion had Grilled sardines. For mains he had fish tagine which was hake and was even better than the haddock he got the last time. I had lamb cooked in a tagine with dates and figs which is a dish made in heaven. The pitta bread was fine. What can I say about this place? Great food, great service. Best Moroccan in town.

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Jaipur Restaurant (George's Street)
41 South Great Georges Street, Dublin 2 , City Centre South, Dublin

This place is Ok. The food is OK, the service is OK, the wine is OK. Fine dining it is not. Tiger prawns we tasty, kebabs, a bit sausagey, lamb a bit chewey, chicken a bit dry, wine a bit overpriced. €200 for four including wine and tip. I wont be rushng back.

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El Bahia Moroccan Restaurant
37 Wicklow Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

Went here with voucher. Staff very welcoming and friendly. House red, an Italian Rossi, at €19.95 is drinkable. I started with spiced liver which the waiter informed me was calves and enquired if I was OK with that ? Nice touch. The liver was delicious and well seasoned if a tad overcooked. I prefer my liver a bit pink in the middle but I realise that is a personal preference and that most people would have been more than happy with this offering. My only criticism, if it is a criticism, is that the portion was far too large. I had to stop myself 2/3 of the way through in order to leave room for my main course. The liver was accompanied by an excellent diced tomato salad with a zingy dressing. My companion started with spiced aubergene which was very good but a bit on the small side. He compensated by stealing most of my tomato salad and even some of my super abundant liver which he declared to be the best he ever tasted. Mind you, he does'nt normally eat offal, so is no expert. For mains we both opted for tagines, his fish and mine lamb. The menu states that the fish is, catch of the day, which the waiter informed us was haddock. This was a decent sized piece of fillet, well cooked and worked well with the spicy sauce and vedge. There were some bones, which did'nt bother my companion, an enthusiatic fish eater, but might some people. At least it shows the fish was fresh. My lamb tagine was very well flavoured although the carrot and parsnip chunks were rather large and al dente which suited me but might not others. The lamb was a generous portion, cooked to perfection in a scrumptious spicy sauce. We also had a side order of pitta bread which was unfortunately undercooked, doughy and not eaten. The waiter was upset that I did'nt tell him this as he would have replaced it immediatly. It was'nt charged for. Verdict? Get in there!!!!!!!

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Zaytoon (Lower Camden Street)
44-55 Lower Camden Street, Dublin 2, Camden Street, Dublin

We went here with a voucher which cost €12 for 2 mains which was supposed to be a 50% saving. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that full price for the same was €14. All the effort of buying a voucher online to save €1 a head. I felt I had been scammed. The food is actually quite tasty. We both had kebabs, I chicken, 1 lamb, a salad and a bottle of water. It came on a flatbread which unfortunatly was undercooked and doughy. Its self service so service does not arise. Its tasty enough after a few pints and wont do you any harm.

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il Divo Restaurant
2 Terenure Road East, (Above Comans), Rathgar, Dublin

Went here on Friday night. Not very busy. Staff friendly. Food very poor. Both had calamari for starters. They had the appearance and consistancy of bicycle tyres. This was followe by soggy pizza and a calzone which was burnt on outside and undercooked in the middle. The pasta portions were huge and I would normally get a takeaway box but in this place why would you bother. My local supermarket sells a pizza for €3.99 which is far superior to what is on offer here. A big sign ouside announces the place is under new management. Perhaps the previous owners were responsible for the good reviews. On friday night the main courses were not of saleable quality. The calzone was truely appalling, with its blackened outside and inside of a mixture of dough, half melted mozerella and cheap processed ham. Why not complain? We Irish never do!! I refuse to believe that the staff did not know how bad the food was. We could'nt get out of the place quick enough.

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Vermilion
94-96 Terenure Road, Dublin 6 , Terenure, Dublin

This a pleasant and friendly place situated over a pub so you don't have to fall far!! The food is middle of the road Indian and for the most part is palatable without being outstanding. The prices are on the high side. What really teed me off was the extra charge of €2.75 for rice. All the Indian places I know in Dublin include rice as part of the main course. This sneaky charge pushes main courses up around the €20 mark and the small bowl of rice is on the mean side. All in all the food is OK but the price gouging on the rice (€5.50 for a couple) is a big no no!!!! There are plenty of Indians in Dublin just as good who don't stoop to this. Vote with your feet!!!!!!!!

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The Woolshed Baa & Grill
Parnell Street, The junction of Jervis street and Parnell street., City Centre North, Dublin

We went here after the Dublin v Meath game. Its handy for a bit of grub after a visit to Croke park. Basically its like an Aussie backpackers hangout. Lots of unadorned wooden tables and chairs. Cheap and cheerful. Its great for sports as you can see a T.V from pretty much everywhere. The beer was fine. I had a gourmate (geddit !) burger and chips which was OK. Not great but went down well with a couple of pints. My mate opted for the veggie pizza which was truely vile. He nearly chundered. I presume they just slung it in the Micro. If you served one of these in OZ you would be strung up by the Goolagongs. Complain? No, we Irish never do. Why? I suppose we did'nt want to spoil a great day - Dublin victory - not even the Woolsheds crappy pizza could do that.

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KC Peaches Cafe & Delicatessen (Nassau Street)
28/29 Nassau Street, Dublin 2 , City Centre South, Dublin

4 of us went here Friday night. Service effeicient and friendly. Dublin bay prawns starter very tasty. Panfried haddock excellent. Cold poached salmon on cold cushed potatos replaced without problem after shock horror reaction. Wine a bit pricy but good selection. Give it a go.

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The Rathmines Inn
82 Lower Rathmines Rd, Rathmines, Dublin 6 , Rathmines, Dublin

The Rathmines Inn has re-invented itself as a Gastropub. The pub part is spot on as the black stuff was in tip top condition. I'm not so sure about the Gastro part though. My partner had a goat cheese salad for starter and I had the seafood chowder. The salad was declared edible but dull while my chowder was almost inedible. Badly over salted, I pushed it aside after a couple of mouthfulls. My main of pan fried tuna was a generous portion cooked to order and was the success of the night. My partners cajun chiken with noodles was a disaster. Dried out pieces of precooked chicken in a tasteless tomatoe sauce on cardboard noodles. The extra portion of chips were limp greasy things with skins still on. Bread and butter pudding was heated up but the custard had not permeated to the slices of white bread which were coldly hiding in this stacked version. I prefer mine in a bowl. A gastopub is supposed to provide resteraunt standard food in a pub. The rathmines Inn was a long way off. Will we be back? No.

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Zen
89 Upper Rathmines Road, Dublin 6, Rathmines, Dublin

We had a voucher which was worth exactly the Chinese New Year special for 2. We had a range of starters plus lettuce boats of minced pork and a range of dishes including sea bream in garlic and chillies, Lamb with green peppers and duck in orange sauce with a choice of steamed or fried rice. All for one voucher!!!! The food was all delicious and more than plentifull. I think we were lucky, the night that was in it. Will be back..

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Lovepasta
Vault 4 Old Harcourt Station Building, Park Place, Upper Hatch St, City Centre South, Dublin

Went here with menupages voucher at 7.30 P.M. Only 2 other customers in place. The only starter on offer was the meat platter which was so-so. The mains were delivered to the table in cardboard take away containers which you transferred to bowls. My salmon and spinach lasagne was warmed up inedible gunk. My companions pasta with prawns was marginally better. Surely Menupages have a responsability to ensure minimum standards of food before including an establshment in a promotion.

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Lan Tania
Main St (Beside The Roost), Maynooth, Kildare

Price is very much an issues here as the quality of the food is very much middle of the road. It clearly states on the Menupages site that "All main courses are served with rice or noodles". This is not the case as they must be paid for as extras which pushes an already pricy bog standard stir fry at €18 over the €20 mark. This is sharp practice as I have never come across this practice in an asian restaurant before. The waiter was a bit sniffy when I ordered 2 glasses of tap water, but I had been forewarned by a previous reviewer about the bottled stuff at €6.50 a pop, which is not mentioned on the menu. We started with the platter for 2 which consisted of 2 chicken satay's, 2 mini spring rolls and 2 spare ribs. This turned out to be the best of the evening and all were tasty and accompanied by a chilli sauce for the rolls and hoisin sauce for the ribs. This was a quite substantial starter. For mains I ordered stir fried lamb but was given stir fried beef without expanation or comment from me. The beef was chewey and of poor quality. The accompanying extra, rice, was of the of the japenese sticky variety which I would not normally associate with a stir fry but was nonetheless quite acceptable. My companion who is a nodle freak declared the vegatarian singapore noodles to be average, tasty enough, but nothing special. There was only 1 other table occupied on the wednesday evening we were there. The souroundings are pleasant the service friendly and efficient if a little smarmy. Overall, its not bad, but not worth the prices. In the present climate it has to be a thumbs down.

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El Toro Bravo
27 South Richmond Street, Portobello, Dublin

This was my second visit in a month armed with a voucher on both occasions. Unfortunately the food is disasterous. The dried up bits of belly pork served with mustard are an insult, the bean and Chorizo stew inedible. the food is not served hot and any resemblence to a spanish tapas bar is purely coincidantal. Its only attraction is that it is cheap, really cheap, in every way, and with a voucher even more so. Everybody in the place seemed to be on vouchers. My advice is to have a good few lovely pints in O'Connell's next door which will anesthesise your taste buds and then get stuck in on the basis that you can't go wrong at that price. You can of course, as I found out, twice!!! You'd want to be a brave bull to eat in this place.

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Greene's Restaurant
Main Street, Maynooth, Kildare

The portions here are quite small so if you go for a salad don't expect to be full. Also the chicken in my salad, which a sliced crumbed breast, tasted processed. My companions vegitarian salad was tasty but stindgy. Deserts were again insubstantial and overpriced. Coffee was good.

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Bobo's Gourmet Burgers (Wexford St)
22 Wexford Street (Beside Whelans), Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

Went here with a friend. Burgers and chips OK. Nothing special. Had 2 bottles of beer to wash them down. Got the bill: Shock-Horror. Beers €5.20 each!! Ouch!!! Lots of places do a burger and chips + a pint for €10. The same here with 33 Cl bottle will cost you the guts of €20. Gouging on drink prices unnacceptable in present climate. My advice:-stick to tap water.

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The Italian Corner
23/24 Wellington Quay, Dublin City Centre, Dublin 2, Temple Bar, Dublin

Four of us went here on Saturday evening. Starters of spicy chicken wings, bruchetta, mozerella salad and deep fried seafood were very nice. Two sirlion steaks accompanied by a potato gratin were very acceptable. Two seafood pasta dishes were pronounced delicious. The service was friendly and effecient. A modest Chianti at €23 was good value. This is a bright open space with a cheerful athmosphere. Good, unpretentious food with no fuss. You can't really go wrong here.

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Boulevard Cafe
27 Exchequer Street, Dublin 2 , City Centre South, Dublin

Starters: 3 rubbery tiger prawns, definitely not fresh, from a can? Warm goats cheese sat like a pork pie on a bed of leaves, microwaved? Mains: Overcooked, Organic, pan fried salmon, farmed?, on top of 6 unpeeled potato's, I kid you not, with a few stringy geen beans strewn about. Pan fried sea bass, farmed? on bed of mash was best dish of evening. Deserts: The bought in chocolate cake was marginally better than the house made cheese cake but not by much. Two brandy's and one decaffe rounded off the evening, the regular coffee which was ordered never arrived. The slightly insipid Chianti Dabruzzo was overpriced at €26. The service was friendly but the staff seemed more interested in chatting among themselves than looking after the customers. We were on one of the now ubiquitous special deal vouchers. The question Dublin diners ask themselves nowadays is not , would I come here again? but rather, would I pay full price for this meal? The answer for me on this occasion has to be a resounding NO!!!

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Citron @ Fitzwilliam Hotel
The Fitzwilliam Hotel, St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

The major problem we encountered at the citron was the lenght of time waiting for the food. The very friendly and apolagetic staff who waited on us spent most of their time waiting for the food to emerge from the kitchen. We waited 1 hour for our starters to appear and another hour for the mains. The pre-prepared desert did'nt take quite as long. And now for the food which was suprisingly good. My confit of duck was well cooked if lacking in seasoning. My partners salad was enthusiaticly recieved although I don't know if he actually tasted it, as ravenous with the hunger, he almost swallowed it all in one go. The bread was very tasty and was rather shamefacedly replendished as the wait for the next course seemed to stretch into eternity. I ordered a medium steak, but alas, Jesus wept, it arrived oozing blood. So, back it went to be replaced about 15 minutes later by a very nice piece of meat cooked as ordered. Meanwhile my partner had made short work of his Salmon au Poivre which came with a duck egg creme brulee, spinich and an almond potato terrine all of which were very good. As my partner does'nt eat eggs the brulee was tranferred to the top of my steak with which it went very well. For desert I had a Black forest gateux log which was tasty. All this was accompanied by a very passable if obscure French Cab Sav for €24 which by sipping very sparingly we managed to make last two long hours. This was followed by excellent coffee's and complimentary cognac's to make up for the delays. The Citron is very well kitted out with charming staff but they seriously need to get the kitchen sorted out. It was Friday the 13th so maybe we were just unlucky. It was about one third full and I shudder to think what it would be like on a full night. I would go back for the food but our night out was blighted by the interminable delays.

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Frankie and Johnnie's Steakhouse
1 Upper Camden Street, City Centre South, Dublin

We had the special offer of steak salad and chips with a glass of prosecco. We also had a €15 bottle of house red which was all there was available. The chips were great, the salad was salad, the steaks were brutal. The wine reminded me of that old Dublin favourite "Red Biddy". I can't see this place lasting very long unless they start giving away the food for nothing.

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Oliviers at the Schoolhouse
2-8 Northumberland Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin

4 of us went here for lunch. Service friendly and efficient. Starters of mackera X2l, aparagus and goats cheese salad we all pronounced very good. Mains of organic salmonX3 and fillet of beef were scrumptious. Wines, a New Zealand Pinot Noir and an obscure but excellent Chilian red were fine. The cheese selection was very good as were the coffe's and brandy's X4. The only blot on the landscape was the bread and butter puddingX3 which was not in my opinion of saleable quality. It came as a square which suggested it was made in a tray and tasted like gur cake. Apart from that, this was a very enjoyable lunch. Add a decent pud and this place could be very good indeed.

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Sweet Basil Thai
Lower Rathmines Road, South Dublin, Rathmines, Dublin

My last visit was on a Friday night in 2007. As before the evening kicked off with 4 nice creamy pints in the Rathmines Inn across the road. The difference was that it, now called the Stout Bar, was nearly empty where before it was heaving. They have a special offer of burger,chicken or lasagne with chips and salad with any pint of your choice for €10. Must try it sometime, nobody did while we were there. Over the road I ordered a bottle of house red which turned out to be a Cono Sur Cab Sav at €16. The Cono Sur brand trumpets drinkability and at €16 is excellent value. We started with spare ribs for me and Chicken satay for my guest which were very tasty. My main of mild duck curry was unusual but good and the hot chicken curry was also good but not hot enough. Extra chillies were produced without demur. The bill came to a whopping (sic) €36.50 which we topped up to €40. Cant go wrong there !! The place was almost empty with only 2 other tables occupied and I noticed a steady stream of take aways. The friendly owner/waiter/barman told me that they are only surviving because it is family run and its the take away business that keeps them going. This place serves good food at low low prices and is great VFM. It deserves to survive.

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Uisce Restaurant
The Hilton Hotel, Charlemont Place, City Centre South, Dublin

The service is very friendly and efficient here. Starters were summer salad and confit of duck on a bed of noodles with chilli. The duck, noodles and chilli went surpisingly well together and the salad was declared a successs.My portion of battered cod was delicious, if meagre with rather soggy thick cut chips (change the oil !!!). My companions sea bass was delicious. A side order of chips was unecessary and for some reason was not charged for. Wine from a very limited choice, a perfectly acceptable French Cuvee something or other which also doubled as the house wine was wildly overpriced at €26. A very enjoyable meal but gouging on the wine is a no-no nowadays.

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Surma
43 Lower Camden Street, Dublin 2, Camden Street, Dublin

Went here on Friday night. Attracted by special offer:- 3 course meal for 2 plus bottle of wine $50. I had Sheek kebab and Lamb Passanda, my companion, Chicken Tika and Chicken Jal Frazi. The food was standard Irish versions of Indian standards in that it was a little on the bland side but nonetherless palatable and tasty. The house wine was drinkable. If you are looking for a middle of the road, easygoing, average meal which won't break the bank you could do worse.

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Ciao Bella Roma
24/25 Parliament Street, Dublin 2, City Centre, Temple Bar, Dublin

We started with a seafood salad for 2 which was tasty enough. Then we both ordered pizza with different toppings. The pizzas were too big for one person. They were also slightly burnt around the edge but soggy in the middle. A bottle of house red at €18 was drinkable. Boxes to take away the remains of the pizzas were provided without question and they were actually much nicer when heated up in the oven next day. The bill at €57 did'nt break the bank but the pizza was very dissapointing. Thumbs down I'm afraid.

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Green Nineteen
19 Lower Camden Street, Dublin 2, Camden Street, Dublin

The food is cheap here but the drink is dear. A bottle of modest plonk cost €28, about €8 too much. The food was mixed. My starter of grilled mushrooms on ciabiatta was so-so.The portobello mushroom on top was leathery. My friends chicken ceaser salad evoked high praise. His haddock in beer batter was fine but the chips were soggy.My cornbeef and cabbage with parsly sauce was scrumptious. It took a bit of prodding to get some good old Colemans as Dijon was the standard but it was worth waiting for. As I say the food was mixed and the soggy chips were a real downer. The service was very friendly and efficient.Could do better.

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Seagrass of Portobello Bridge
30 South Richmond Street, Dublin 8, Portobello, Dublin

This place has come on in leaps and bounds since our last visit in 2010. Starters of Risotto and scallops were near perfect. The lamb shank melted off the bone. The hake was perfectly cooked. The only minus was an oversweet chocolate pot with cointreau which had the texture of a blackmange which was taken off the bill. I'm sure that was just a hiccup. The service was friendly and effecient. Brandy unfortunelately was served in whisky glasses. Invest in a few brandy baloons, go easy on the sugar and you have a 5* establishment. Highly recommended.

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Marco Pierre White Steakhouse & Grill
51 Dawson Street, Dublin 2, Dawson Street, Dublin

I'm afraid Hells Kitchen has arrived in Dawson St. more with a whimper than a bang. 4 of us booked for the DineinDublin special menu of 3 courses for €30. The starter of potted duck was served so cold that we could'nt taste it until it was nearly all eaten and then it looked and tasted like bog standard supermarket duck pate. It was accompanied by an unappetising slice of hot bread which tasted stale and was insufficient for the purpose. Whats wrong with melba toast? For maincourse we all had the 8oz steak which came with a little pot of bernaise sauce and 4 (yes 4) thick cut chips on the plate. Not a smidgin of vedge of salad in sight although we learned these were available at extra cost. My steak was of what used to be called the minute steak variety. It was small and very chewey. In fact it was so chewey that I found myself swallowing partially chewed pieces of meat. It might be wise to check if they have somebody trained in the Heimlick Maneuver before ordering steak here. Deserts of Eaton mess and bread and butter pudding were the highlght of the evening. Service was efficient and friendly and the wine list was good if a bit overpriced. It was'nt the worst meal I've ever had but not the best either by a long shot. We were attracted by Marco's reputation and the special offer. What happened to the Michelin starred chef? He has been reduced serving minute steaks and selling stock cubes. O how the mighty have fallen. The place was full of people taking advantage of the DineinDublin week special offer which turned out in Marco's case to be decidely tight assed. We wont be rushing back.

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Buenos Aires Grill
Unit 2 Castle Way, Golden Lane, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

We had a Menupages special offer voucher on Friday night. It is 2 yrars since our last visit for which we paid full price. On this occasion the portion sizes were decidedly smaller perhaps because of the special offer. Starters were Empanades (undercooked) and grilled mackeral (so-so). My T-Bone was small and too thinly cut but the flavour Was delicious. My partners fillet was a bit charred on the outside and again a bit on the mean side. The mains were accompanied by lovely thick cut chips. We passed on the desserts.Between a nice bottle of Malbec, 1 Jameson, 2 cognacs and a tip we dropped an extra €40. The place was packed, the service friendly and efficient. The starters were not up to scratch. We left feeling that we had half a fillet and half a T-bone at half price. Whats special about that?

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Brasserie Sixty6
66/67 Great South Georges Street, Dublin 2 , City Centre South, Dublin

This is a very nice restaurant with great atmosphere and very pleasant and efficient staff.Its a great pity about the food which is poorly cooked and overpriced. One wonders if there is a professional chef at work here or an enthusiastic amateur. My deviled kidneys were overcooked to the point of having the texture of pate. My companions calamari could have been manufactured by Firestone. Mains were a very ordinary farmed sea bass and a tasteless lamb steak which was served on a mess of beans which included slices of frankfurter and may have started out as a form of cassoulet but resembled something a lot less appetising. It tasted insipid. The Mississippi mud pie was a refrigerated brick and the cheese board was an insult to the name. A very pleasant Stop Banks Marlborough Sav Blanc was a gouging €34.50. It was Saturday night. The place was packed. Mother Ireland is still rearing them. Long live the Celtic Tiger.

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Darwins
80 Aungier Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

Darwins is not cheap but the food is generally of a good standard. The service is slow. Fish Cakes was tasty, yes there was only one. Mash is served with everything. For a place that's mainly known as a steak house they charge extra for chips. Steak and chips-horse and carriage-in Darwins its steak and mash-weird-the chianti is well worth a visit-expect to shell out about €150-200 for 2 with deserts and drinks. Not bad but not great either. Sort of a poormans you know who's on the Green.

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Marios (Terenure)
103 Terenure Road East, Dublin 6, Terenure, Dublin

Bank Holiday Saturday, not too busy. Service friendly. Starters: warm goats cheese salad very nice but huge, Deep fried mozerella with honey and mustard sauce tasty but could have been hotter. Large pizzas Caprino and 4 cheeses very substantial and tasty. Tiramisu gloopy mess with no hint of amoretto. Chianti Ruffino good match for Pizza. Box was provided for leftover pizza without question. Very tasty when heated for breakfast. Recommend: Just have Large Caprino Pizza and Chianti Ruffino with a good book €40. €54 for 2.

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Zen
89 Upper Rathmines Road, Dublin 6, Rathmines, Dublin

This was my second visit since the refurbishment. Zen has gone up market and while the food is good it is no better than before while the prices are far higher than your average Chinese. We both had special hors douvres to start which were reheated spare rib, mini spring roll and prawn toast. I had roast duck with fried rice which was ok but came unadorned so I had to order a side dish of veg. My companion had the deep fried monkfish which was again just ok and again unadorned. Don’t expect to leave here feeling full. The wine list is very limited and overpriced. Overall so-so food served in small portions at high prices.

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Meghna Tandoori
8-12 Terenure Place, Dublin 6, Terenure, Dublin

Went with 2 friends Saturday Night. Comfortable, pleasant surroundings and staff. Food was standard Indian fare cooked to a high standard with quality ingredients. Helpings were generous. Sheek Kebab, Tandori Chicken and Lamb Pasanda drew particular praise. Bill represented good value for money. Recommended.

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Indian Ocean Dublin
15 Montague Street, City Centre South, Dublin

This establishment makes great play of everything being freshly prepared. My starter of Sheek Kebab which is normally served sizzling hot at the table arrived luke warm accompanied by a few bits of salad. it had either being cooked and let go cold or precooked and warmed up. Either way it was a black mark for any Indian eatery. In contrast my maincourse of lamb Pasanda was delicious with a lovely creamy mango sauce. My companion declared himself happy with his stuffed pepper and Chicken Jalfrezi. The accompaning pilau rice and nan bread were both very good. The wine list is sparse with a few dreaded cheap Frenchies as house wines at €20 a pop. We opted for a South African Pinot Noir at €30 which was bursting with fruit and very drinkable. The bill including 2 cognacs and coffee's came to €76 which is very good value. Complimentary drinks were also offered. I will be back but the problem with the Shek kebab will have to be addressed.

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Jo'Burger
137 Rathmines Road, Dublin 6 , South Dublin, Rathmines, Dublin

This is one of those places that supersize the burger by giving you a massive bun. We had a burger with bacon and egg(Molapo)and a cheese burger(Jablkam)with Bush fries and a cola and still water. For all the hoopla and strange names the burgers were no better and no worse than the well known burger chains, the bush fries or potato wedges as they call them elsewhere were, well, like potato wedges. The cola was well, like, cola and the water was, well, like water but for some strange reason been imported from Italy the bill came to €31.48 which is a bit steep for what after all is just another burger joint.

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The Dining Room
35 Dawson Street, City Centre South, Dublin

This place is not cheap. The mark up on wine would make Dick Turpin blush. I went there last Saturday night with two friends. The service was a bit hit and miss but very friendly. I started with seared scallops accompanied with minted French beans, orange and almonds. The beans were definitely minty with an orange segment on top but I could detect no trace of almonds. Unfortunately the three rather small and quite delicious scallops were a bit cold. My companions had chicken liver parfait, apple jelly and toasted soda bread on the one hand and artisan smoked fish platter on the other. The parfait was very pleasant but was indistinguishable from a supermarket bought Brussels pate when divested of the jelly. The smoked fish platter which consisted of thin slices of very ordinary farmed smoked salmon with a bit of smoked mackerel thrown in on a bed of lettuce was an insult at the price. Mains were slow cooked beef on a bed of vichy carrot with a side order of duck fat roast potatoes for two us and baked whole monkfish with pea beurre blanc for the other. The slow cooked beef, which appeared to be a boned out piece of shin, was very tasty if a little dry and the vichy carrot had both the taste and texture of a well known brand of baby food. The potatoes were quite lovely. My friend’s monkfish was declared to be beautiful. Turning to deserts, two us opted for the quite sinful and delicious chocolate cake. My other companion choose blue d'auvergne with mulled wine pear, which was horrible. The above was accompanied by 2 bottles of a pleasant Sancerre followed by 2 cognacs, 1 calypso coffee and 2 coffees. The bill came to €292 including service and we donated the €8 out of 6 crispy50's to the indigent restaurateurs association.

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Rolys Bistro
7 Ballsbridge Terrace, Dublin, Ballsbridge, Dublin

Roly's serves basically poor food at high prices although it is obviously very popular. The terrine starter was so cold it was tasteless and the accompanying dab of stewed rhubarb irrelevant. The main course of hake was overcooked and not fresh. The pudding tasted suspiciously of a factory. The wine list consisted mainly of supermarket Plonk. Our party were rushed at all stages and the credit card slip was signed standing in the corridor. What an overrated dump!

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The Port House
64a South William Street, Dublin 2, City Centre South, Dublin

My overriding impression was darkness. The oily light came from candles, which are used to pore over the menu. Certainly not a place for the visually impaired. There also seemed to be a severe shortage of bread with the Spanish staple Aioli served in a miniscule bowl. The cold meats were indifferent. Having said that the rest of the food was very nice -patata bravas-grilled mushrooms-gambas ahillo. The wine -Entente Temperanillo - was very acceptable. In addition it didn’t break the bank. I'll be back.

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