There’s been a few recent changes to the Creative Quarter, some sad, some exciting, so we’ve refreshed our guide to the area....
The Creative Quarter is the quarter you want to be in. The other three quarters? Well, we won’t even mention them. So clear your next day off and prepare for a day of great food, blissfully aimless shopping and too much coffee. Here’s how we would spend it... (and in case you're not sure where we're talking about, here's a map too)
Start off in the Pepperpot Café in the Powerscourt Centre for breakfast. Whilst we’re big fans of their famous pear and bacon sandwich (it’s worth the hype), their scrambled eggs are also spot on.
Afterwards, poke your head into homeware shop Article, before walking down South William St to Clement & Pekoe for coffee. The bench outside is one of the best places for people-watching in the city, if you can nab a spot. If it's too cold for that there's plenty of indoor seats too.
Head to Industry & Co. on Drury Street for Ottolenghi-style meats and salads, and have a browse around the shop afterwards. Earlier this year they started opening on Friday and Saturday evenings - details on that here - and while they've stopped for the while we hear they're due to start up again soon.
If the weather is good, Blazing Salads is a great spot for a takeaway salad to bring to Stephen's Green. Alternatively, sit down with your salad in Sprout on Exchequer Street (below) who grow their own greens on their farm in Kildare.
Get your afternoon coffee fix from Kaph on Drury Street, one of our favourite cafés in town. The seating upstairs is a nice place to get some work done but be warned, it can be packed. If you’re still feeling peckish, go for the quintessential pint and toastie in Grogan's. It’s nothing fancy but it hits the spot.
Around the corner on Stephen Street Lower you'll find Sisu Izakaya where you can get yourself a great value bento box or some artfully decorated sushi to keep you going through your day of wandering, boozing and eating.
During the day...
Go to the Irish Design Shop, the Secret Book and Record Store or do a day course in Cook’s Academy. Have a stroll around Asia Market on Drury St and walk through George’s Street Arcade.
Have a browse around upmarket grocer Fallon and Byrne and try to nab some of their truffle brie. They also do €1 corkage on any bottle from their wine cellar to drink in on Mondays and Tuesdays.
For a caffeine top up, call into Grantham's on George's Street, where the coffee shop is in collaboration with Dunnes Stores and garden designer, Diarmuid Gavin, making for very Instagrammable coffee.
Hungry again? The fried chicken gods have smiled upon Dublin town and blessed each and every one of us with Chimac, the Korean fried chicken joint using Irish, free-range chicken on Aungier Street with the ability to grant you happiness instilled in a mug of frosé. As feel-good as fast food gets.
Feeling hot? ‘Gram some instant ice cream at Three Twenty Ice Cream, the ice cream shop that makes it on the spot using the science of liquid nitrogen. A bit on the pricey side but will it fulfil you inside? Kinda-maybe-not, but also it’s magic or something.
To start off the evening with a drink, Loose Canon is perfect for a glass of natural wine and a plate of Irish cheese and charcuterie. Opened by the guys from Meet Me in the Morning, their small plates are great if you don’t want a big meal, but it's easy to accidentally lose track of every responsibility in your life, spend the evening here and rack up a very large bill.
For a casual dinner, Pi has been one of our favourite spots since it opened. Even if there’s a queue, it’s worth the wait for this pi(e). If you want to push the boat out, head for Dylan McGrath’s Asian and South American influenced Taste at Rustic, for some wagyu beef sushi or salmon cooked over a robata grill.
777 on George’s Street is always a lively dining experience (you can read our review here). It can be a bit pricey so if you’re conscious of your budget go on Sundays, where all dishes are €7.77. Or else go for Margarita Mondays where you'll get two margs for twelve beans. A cheaper taco alternative is Masa, on the corner of Drury Street, resulting in even more tacos and quesadillas to be had.
If we were playing fast and loose with the Creative Quarter boundaries (see Chimac above), we might suggest some counter dining at Uno Mas, the Spanish influenced relative to Etto around the corner on Aungier Street - a no brainer for a good meal, but be sure to book ahead to avoid the fomo that you’re already having.
Alternatively if your wallet is feeling a bit light this month go for dim sum in Lucky Tortoise next door and order everything from the menu for €20, including bao, potstickers and kimchi coleslaw. Good times guaranteed.
Finish off the night with drinks at Idle Wild or No Name bar on Fade Street - the only indicator of the latter being a wooden snail hanging above the door. Alternatively, head for more casual pints and board games in P.Mac’s - the sibling to Blackbird and Cassidy’s. Then crawl off home to bed to recover, filled with a whole new sense of creativity.
Have we missed any of your favourite Creative Quarter spots? Let us know by emailing email@example.com.