By Katie Comer
For quite some time now visiting Dublin has captured my interest, so me and my boyfriend jumped at the chance to visit the city on our way back from Scotland. The city itself reminded me of Amsterdam, with its quirky shops and pubs, Dublin’s bustling metropolis is the heart of Irish culture.
For breakfast we visited PÓG; a whitewashed, minimalistic, chic café situated just off of Dublin’s famous O’Connell high street. It’s marble tables, wooden booth seats and blackboard style menus added to the cafés stylish aesthetic. Serving breakfast and brunch all day, their menu offers a tasty alternative to the usual high street eateries. They have moved away from traditional breakfast food and instead focus on delicious and wholesome vegetarian and vegan options.
From the menu, I tried the toasted brioche with whipped espresso mascarpone, banana and chia seeds, costing €6.50. Considering how flavoursome my breakfast was and how full I was once I had finished, I thought their menu was reasonably priced. The only negative observation I would have to make, would be at the price of their smoothies and juices, costing €6. They seemed pretty expensive considering that you could’ve bought brunch for that price. I had a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice, which was half the price and just as refreshing.
The trendy venue combined with its unique style of food makes this place a must visit, even if it is just for an artisanal coffee, I would highly recommend popping in.
A trip to Dublin would not be complete without visiting one of their many pubs. Situated just off of Grafton Street, Mulligan & Haines can be found on a small quaint cobblestone street. The pub had a quirky, Tudor style exterior, with shelving that stored old whiskey bottles leading to its doorway. Once inside the pub had a gothic feel, dark furnishings and dim lighting helped to maintain its cool and edgy vibe.
Their lunch menu was realistically priced, although we did end up choosing the most expensive item. The 8oz Irish beef burger with blue cheese was to die for- extremely tasty and very very filling! For €12.50, the burger came with blue cheese, salad, chunky chips and aioli. Like any city, alcoholic drinks are always pricey, and this place was not an exception. Their cocktail menu started at €11 onwards, so unfortunately, I did not have the sort of bank account or budget that would allow me to splurge on such a luxury. However, my glass of merlot accompanied my lunch very well. I got the sense that this was the kind of place that you could really appreciate in the evenings; it had a stylish bar and a sophisticated drinks menu to match.
If lunch doesn’t take your fancy, the dinner menu in my opinion looked far more appetising. I would honestly recommend visiting this pub, even if it is only for a drink, the atmosphere and decor is truly worth stopping in for.
For dinner we were initially unsure on where to go, as Dublin is an expensive city we wanted something that was within our budget but was also good value. We happened to stumble across Port House Pintxo whilst looking for Dublin’s famous Temple Bar. Set off of a cobblestone street, the restaurant was beautifully lit on the outside and had a cool retro urban feel once inside. Since it was such a warm evening, we decided to sit in the garden terrace. There were tea lights on the tables and string filament bulb lights hung above the terrace to create a cosy industrial feel.
Once sat we were greeted by a friendly waitress who recommended several different dishes that would complement our bottle of red. The tapas style restaurant was particularly appealing as we were able to share five tapas items and a bottle of red wine for €60. If that seems too pricey, the dishes were fairly large so even three to four items would be sufficient – we were just feeling greedy! Each dish was individually priced, so the cost of items varied depending on what you had. They had a huge selection of tapas, from vegetarian options to fish and meat, the restaurant offered something for everyone. Their drinks menu matched this, offering a vast assortment of wines you certainly weren’t stumped for choice!
If like myself you are a tapas enthusiast and enjoy sharing a selection of Spanish appetizers, then I urge you to pay a visit.