For those who work in the hospitality industry (or any others that don't shut down at the weekend), Monday is essentially their weekend, and after an actual weekend of working day and night, a lot of restaurants close on Monday to give their staff a break. For those with that night off, it’s easy to be stuck for somewhere to eat, so here's our guide to where to eat on Mondays, whether you're in need of sustenance on your day off or are just looking for an early week excursion.
1. The Seafood Café
Niall Sabongi’s Temple Bar restaurant is a welcome respite from trad music and pricey pints in the capital’s tourist trap. Reasonably priced with a menu suited for sharing, it’s a friendly, laid-back place to enjoy fresh seafood.
It’s no secret that we think Reggie White's Neapolitan style pizzas are the best in Dublin (see here). The classic margarita and zuccha are our favourites, and the salty-sweet desserts are as perfect as the pizzas.
3. Fish Shop, Benburb Street
Fish Shop's Benburb location is an easy spot for a seafood dinner and a glass of wine. The menu is short, simple and changes frequently, but the fish and chips and fish burger are always on. Interesting, natural wine list with one of the city's best selection of sherries.
If you’re looking for a more lively night out, 777 always comes with a buzz. The 2 margaritas for €14 on Mondays can be dangerous, but there are plenty of tacos, tostadas and tortilla chips to soak them up.
5. Loose Canon Cheese and Wine
The newly opened natural wine and cheese shop is the place of the moment, and Monday openings to cater to the trade were a part of the plan from the start. It's rare to find it not completely jammed, and being in the tiny shop feels like having wine at a friend's house. Perfect if you’re not looking for a full meal, they make charcuterie and cheese plates up from what's in the fridge that day, and also do daily changing small plates, like Toonsbridge mozzarella with fermented strawberry salt.
6. M & L Chinese
One of the few places in Dublin to get authentic Sichuan food, the dumplings and fried green beans with chilli have been the start of many addictions over the years. Corkage is €5 but go easy on the chilli oil if you're taking something nice. Read our M & L once over here.
Piglet’s supper menu is easy going, with pasta, fish and Cote de Boeuf for the very hungry. It's a cosy spot for a plate of food and some great wine, and if you find yourself in Temple Bar surrounded by camera bearing tourists and “The Auld Triangle” ringing in your ears, it's a good place to run for cover. Try the tapas with goat bacon or duck gizzards, with whatever wine pairings the staff recommend.
8. The Pig's Ear
Classic Irish, contemporary dining on Nassau Street from Chef Stephen McAllister. Bright, airy dining room overlooking Trinity College, and nostalgia-inducing desserts like hobnob cheesecakes in jam jars and homemade walnut whips.
9. Terra Madre
Rustic country Italian food with no frills, the basement level restaurant is hidden out of view but worth a trip downstairs. Charming service, seriously good pasta, and many of the wines and ingredients are brought over from Italy especially for the restaurant.
The french style bistro has been a staple in Dublin for years. It’s always reliable for a good meal with a buzzy atmosphere, and has been awarded a Michelin Bib Gourmand for the past nine years.
11. The Garden Room
A peaceful setting to dine in, particularly when it's warm enough to have the doors open and you can look out onto the Merrion Hotel's manicured gardens. The all-day dining menu is pretty over-arching, with everything from snacks of crispy pigs ears and avocado cigars to seafood towers and burgers.
The only Michelin starred restaurant in the city open on a Monday, if you’re in the mood for a blow out. Derry and Sallyanne Clarke have held onto their star since 2003 and the standard of food at L'Ecrivain is always reliably good.
13. One Pico
Classic cuisine from the same restaurant family as The Greenhouse, with head chef Ciaran McGill serving seasonal dishes like Wicklow venison with pear, beetroot and salsify, and grouse with blackberries. The pre-theatre menu is the more affordable option, with two courses for €30 or three for €38.
The fine dining Indian restaurant in Dundrum serves incredible, innovative Indian food from varying regions. Head chef Karan Mittal has wowed everyone since taking over the kitchen earlier this year, and won 'Rising Star of the Year' at the 2018 Food & Wine Awards. The dining room is pleasant and service is always first rate.
15. Octopussy's Seafood Tapas
One of the best places for fresh fish on the pier in Howth, particularly if it's a nice day and you can nab an outside table. Try the generous seafood platter with mussels, crab claws, Dublin Bay prawns and gambas. Read our once over here.