When planning a trip to a new place, I always do a thorough search of the best places to go for brunch, dinner and cake stops (an integral part of any trip). I’m largely inspired by Instagram, Twitter and other blog posts but also from asking friends who have been before or even better, have lived in a particular place I’m visiting. There are few things that bring me as much joy as a tasty brunch, a steaming mug of hot chocolate with the most gloriously indulgent bakery treat or a hidden restaurant that simply serves wholesome, tasty food. Whilst I will probably never jump out of a plane, bungee-jump (the sheer thought gives me heart palpitations) or step foot in any kind of enclosed space (pot-holing is my personal nightmare), I am hugely adventurous when it comes to food and am always open to trying local cuisine specialties and dishes!
My last trip back in 2018 to Dublin, Ireland was no exception and help was on hand from a friend of a friend of a friend, who’d lived in Dublin for a good couple of years and knew all the best eateries and bars around. Twitter also came to our aid and we got a good few recommendations from there too which we knew we had to try. A big thank you to those people for the foodie heads-up and here’s hoping this post gives you some top tips of where to eat and drink out on your next visit to Dublin.
You can’t go to Dublin without trying this gem of a brunch spot. We visited Brother Hubbard (North) which is a cool, contemporary and cosy café that turns out brilliant, delicious, freshly made home bakes. After a flight at some ungodly hour of the morning, this was our first stop in Dublin and it did not disappoint. I had pancakes with pear and white chocolate cream and my travel pal had chorizo, sweet potato and a black pudding affair. Both were super tasty (we tried a bit of each) and came with a reasonable price tag. The staff were really friendly and attentive and the atmosphere was beautifully laid-back. Definitely will be heading back here on any future visits.
This came highly recommended and lived up to our expectations. We stopped at K C Peaches for lunch one day but also for cake – both were fab but the cake was a particular highlight. I opted for a lemon meringue pie tart which honestly melted in the mouth and my travel pal, Luce, went for a cherry pie. We needed a little pick-me-up after a day trekking around the city (you can have a read of what we got up to here) and this did just the trick.
Now, we didn’t quite make it inside this particular cake shop but my mouth was watering peering through the windows of Queen of Tarts. The cakes looked beyond incredible and given how busy it was, I would recommend trying this brilliantly named cake shop out!
Pizza fans, this one is for you. Yes the concept is a bit of a novelty but this was one of the funniest nights out of last year and I would highly recommend The Big Blue Bus! It’s a tad like that vintage bus that’s parked up in London and serves afternoon tea, only this bus is blue, a little rusty around the edges and just sells tasty, home-made pizzas. I went for a pepperoni number and Luce went for the ‘tropical’ pizza- yes there was pineapple on it and yes, there is absolutely no excuse for it under any circumstances. That aside, this is one of the best (most-filling) pizzas I’ve had and would go back here in a heart-beat. It is quite student-y so if that’s not your thing it might be best to avoid this one. Otherwise, make sure you book and add this to your Dublin itinerary!
With neither Luce or myself being rugby watchers, we utterly overlooked the fact that Ireland were playing New Zealand the weekend of our travels and this place was booked up every time we tried to go in! We heard wonderful things about the Hairy Lemon from the locals and online so if you’re looking for an alternative, cheap and cheerful place this is a definite possibility to try out. It was heaving every timed we passed it so the chefs must be doing something right!
If you’re heading to Dublin November/December time, you HAVE to stop off at The Ginger Man for a drink. I have never witnessed so many Christmas decorations in one place and I doubt I will ever see that many again. The ceiling, walls, bar and every nook and cranny imaginable was filled with hanging baubles, tinsel, Santa’s etc. Overwhelming but also magical and definitely worth popping in just for the experience!
The No Name Bar also came highly recommended and would definitely like to try this one out in the future too. Drop Dead Twice was also on our list, we were drawn by the BYOB Cocktail Bar which frankly sounds fantastic.
If you’re thinking about spending a day by the sea in Howth, then I would recommend Crabby Jo’s for their fish and chips. Fresh, generous portions and washed down with a pint of Guinness, this was another favourite meal out. We stumbled in utterly windswept and this cosy, homely pub warmed up the cockles and replenished our energy supplies ready for an afternoon of more exploring!