This Week's Critic Reviews


Provenance seems to be the theme this week, with almost every restaurant praised for their Irish lobster, Connemara mussels or free-range, Irish chicken.

In The Irish Times, Catherine Cleary was in Green Man Wines in Terenure trying out ex-Fia head chef Keith Coleman's new menu, who's currently there doing a residency. She gives it 9.5/10, and the descriptions of the dishes sent us into a mild panic that we wouldn't get there before said residency ends (no date as of yet).

They ate smoked Lough Neagh eel with pickled turnip, butter and mustard on charred Scéal bread ("like the perfect Croque Monsieur ... oozy and comforting"), charred Wye Valley asparagus "laced with skin grafts of Gubbeen lardo" and marigold petals, and slices of Goatsbridge trout with juniper and a crème fraîche "thick and silky as expensive face cream."

Onglet with quartered white turnips is "spectacular", with meat "cooked so briefly it hasn’t tightened to sinew and yet it’s not so underdone that its organ honk hits you", and they finished with woodruff custard, rhubarb, strawberries, buckwheat groats and shortbread made with savoury (a herb with a flavour somewhere between thyme and rosemary). She calls it a place to bring wine and food lovers together, with "plates of brilliantly creative food in a casual friendly place."

If you're wondering what she drank in the wine shop/bar with possibly the best wine list and the best value in the city (€8 corkage on everything so the more expensive the bottle the better the value), the answer is an elderflower spritz. If you go (and you should) don't make the same mistake. Put yourself in the hands of the ultra-knowledgeable, ultra-lovely staff and have the full Green Man experience. Read her review here.

In the Irish Independent Katy McGuinness is praising the premium fried chicken (free-range and Irish) at Mad Egg just off Camden Street. After apologising profusely for her use of the word "moist", she describes how the chicken is brined in tea to tenderise it, then dipped in buttermilk and fried in rapeseed oil, ending up "impeccably moist (sorry) and flavoursome within, and properly crisp on the outside."

Her Heart Breaker chicken sandwich is doused in 'dripping cheese, house hot sauce and pickles', which somewhat obliterates how good the fried chicken is, so she suggests sticking to the more subtle OG, with lemon and herb mayonnaise, lettuce and pickles.

Chicken salt fries are "excellent", but mac and cheese with candied bacon and charred corn with jalapeno butter are both lacking in flavour, and on a menu as short as this "there's no room for duds". A dessert of DIY cheesecake is "quite good", with a selection of toppings to choose from, and remind her of thrown together ice-cream cakes at children's birthday parties.