Our bi-monthly list features the most talked about restaurants in Dublin right now. We recently had to increase it from 20 to 25 and currently we're seeing no reason to bring it back down again. This is where the reviewers are reviewing, the instagrammers are instagramming, and where getting a Saturday (or any) night table can take military planning, in alphabetical order...
Where: Blackrock Market
The tiny Indian in Blackrock exploded in 2018 with zero PR attached - just word of very satisfied mouths. Soon it was being called "outstanding" by Tom Doorley and "a revelation" by Katy McGuinness and it was firmly on the Dublin food map. Expect very tasty, very good value food, and the fact that you can BYOB is another reason it's difficult to get a table in.
Where: Setanta Place
The hype for formerly London-based chef Niall Davidson's first Dublin opening was big, and when Allta finally opened in November it delivered on its pre-opening promises. The handmade pastas, charcuterie and hand-dived scallops have been a hit with *most* of the critics, with Leslie Williams saying it blew his mind, and Niall Toner calling the crab bigoli everything he ever wanted.
Read our Allta once over here.
The Argentinean café opened in mid-January with slick imagery and a very different menu to what's currently available on the food scene, and seems to have had a queue since day one. You have definitely seen the dulce de leche pancakes on social media and have probably stood on the SRC waiting for a table. Catherine Cleary called it "very special", while Katy McGuinness said it's a "small restaurant with a big personality"..
Read our Alma once over here.
Where: South Circular Road
Always a cornerstone of the Dublin dining scene, Bastible has been catapulted back into the limelight with the news that ex-Noma chef Cúán Greene is back in Dublin and their new head chef. Catherine Cleary was swiftly through the door, calling it "the start of something truly bloody exciting". Expect a stampede.
Check out Bastible's hunger-inducing Instagram feed here.
Where: Pearse Street
Did cruffins even exist before Bread 41 opened last September? What did we have as a 'treat' breakfast? What did food bloggers pull apart for insta story videos? It's fair to say that Real Bread fanatic Eoin Cluskey's Pearse Street bakery burst onto the scene and shows no signs of slowing down. Watch the sad faces pile up around 10am when they find out that everything's gone and the next bake isn't till 11.
The new neighbourhood restaurant from four industry friends won a Michelin Bib Gourmand within six months of opening, and has given diners across the city reason to get on a bus to Terenure. Leslie Williams in the Examiner saying Circa's "future looks bright", and Ernie Whalley in the Sunday Times calling chef Gareth Naughton's cooking "stylish with inspirational touches".
Read more about Circa here.
Where: Clanbrassil Street
It's always a bit of a tie between who's getting more love - OG Bastible (above) or newer sibling Clanbrassil House, but between Cúán Green heading up the kitchen in Bastible and Clanbrassil head chef Gráinne O'Keeffe being named "best chef under 30" at last year's Food & Wine awards, we'd say they're pretty even right now.