Life in lockdown continues, and while it won’t change what we celebrate, it has changed how we do it. We suggest it’s time to swap your slippers for your second most comfy pair of footwear, wash your hair properly (not just the front so it looks passable on work Zoom calls), and maybe even put on a pair of trousers with a waistband while we guide you through the ultimate food options for all of life’s celebratory events. Just to note, while life has slowed down, the rate at which restaurants have to adapt is at Sandra Bullock in Speed levels. Please check directly with the restaurant in plenty of time to ensure they’re offering delivery or collection on the day you need it.
While quarantine birthdays suck, there’s always cake. If you’re not able to celebrate a friend’s birthday with them, we suggest sending cake. In fact, if you want to be our friend, sending cake is pretty much the key to our affections at any time of year. Mud Bakery is bringing us much needed quarantine joy through their deliveries. The week’s menu is uploaded every Saturday and available until it runs out, with delivery on selected days so do plan ahead. Also, do get more of the chocolate pecan cookie sandwiches than you think the birthday boy or girl will eat because they’re delicious, and friends don’t let friends run out of birthday cookie sandwiches.
We really want an excuse to order Finch and Berry's chocolate covered strawberries, and to a lesser extent would like a reason to send them to someone else. Word on the street is they're currently working on chocolate covered strawberry bouquets, which can be mixed with marshmallows, roses, macarons, chocolate bars and fresh berries, and we'll take one of those over flowers any day. Prices start at €35 for 12. See their selection here.
The Cake Café has launched a Sunday afternoon tea delivered across Dublin which includes enough sandwiches, scones, cakes, and prosecco cocktails for two for €59. Availability is limited so we’d suggest getting in touch with them well in advance so you don’t miss out.
If a birthday brunch is what you’re after, there are an increasing number of cafes and restaurants offering collection and delivery. We were especially excited to see Herb Street start a collection service in Grand Canal Dock. Lots of their brunch classics are now available including monster stacks of pancakes, chicken and waffles, eggs benedict and the French toast that’s served with a dangerous amount of rum butter caramel with bananas, pecans, and whipped cream.
Network Café on Aungier Street have launched brunch in a box available for collection or Saturday delivery (at a very reasonable €4) and includes hot and cold options like notions on toast (eggs and avo, natch), the brunch bap, granola, and buttermilk pancakes with lots of toppings. We've tried it and it's excellent value at €9 a head.
Mad Yolks egg-based breakfast sandwiches can be delivered to your door (within 3kms of their Fourth Corner bar location on Wood Quay) or are available for collection, along with pre-mixed cocktails. Want this service to continue after lockdown ends TBH.
The Big Night In
If you’re lucky enough to live with family, friends, or housemates who feel like they fit the bill, you can recreate the feeling of a celebratory night out at home - without the €30 taxi fare from town, or the dodgy kebab you semi-remember the next day.
The Quarantini Kit from Catch Events contains everything you need to make different cocktails each week. Send one to yourself, one to a friend, and mix them up while you catch-up on what’s not going on in each other’s lives. Perfect if you need a hug…e margarita.
Pickle have lots of dishes available for collection from Camden Street or for delivery within 5kms, and for 15% less than you’d pay in-house; more of this please, restaurants. We’d suggest ordering enough to guarantee leftovers for the following morning. Quarantine goals right there.
Mister S on Camden Street have been releasing a weekly menu for weekend collection which is not only amazingly tasty, but incredible value at €22 a person for three courses.
If you’re Southside and can get to Michael’s, they’re still slinging out fresh seafood fresh off the boats and available for collection from Thursday to Sunday on a pre-booked basis.
Northside, Old Street in Malahide are taking bookings for collection (including for their Sunday roast), and are also selling some really top wines at 50% off.
Lots of our favourites are turning to delivery services like Just Eat, Deliveroo, or Uber Eats to get food to their loyal customers. Availability depends on where you live and some restaurants are only operating on limited days/evenings but some we’ve seen lately allowing you to order online are Yeeros, Sano Pizza, Lucky Tortoise (which funnily enough is operating on both Deliveroo and UberEats but the all-in offer is only available on the latter), Chimac, Mad Egg, Shouk, Featherblade and Hang Dai. Just don’t forget to add the delivery person’s tip on the app as contact delivery means they can’t always take cash at the door.
Celebrate a New Arrival
One of the things we’ve found hardest lately is not being able to meet new babies and welcome them to the world while we get baby snuggles. If you want to show a friend you care and make their life a little easier, a food care package is the way to go.
While any of ideas listed above will help new parents get to eat without juggling a newborn and a knife, we especially love the boxes from Blacksheep Foods which are available for delivery across Dublin, or can be collected from BaaBaaCafé in Chapelizod if you’re doing a doorstep drop-off. Options range from cheese and charcuterie boxes, to breakfast for two, and you can even add a posy of fresh flowers for the new mum.
Fade Street Social have started an "at home" collection/delivery service, where everything comes cold and you follow instructions (either in print with the box or via their YouTube channel) to finish it off at home. You can order a set three courses for €30, or opt for Peter Hannan steaks or the 'healthy' option of kale and avocado salad with apple, spinach, sprouts, radishes and lime yogurt dressing, with tataki of tuna or salmon. See the menu and how to order here.
If you'd rather treat them to some fresh produce, the fruit, vegetable and Irish produce boxes from Hussey's Farm will be a sight for sore, tired eyes when it turns up on their doorstep.
And if you think they're in need of a meat-based treat, Rings Farm in Kilkenny, who specialise in organic, free-range chickens have started delivering across the country thanks to the decimation of their restaurant business. The birds are some of the best in the country and you can order a bumper box to keep the tired parents going until they turn the newborn corner.
Celebrate An Anniversary
Any of the options listed above would tick the box here, but if it’s your anniversary you may as well show you’ve made an extra effort. While a trip to Liath typically involves months of waiting, booking babysitters, and a pretty steep bill, Liath to Go, the collect and cook/heat at home offering from the Michelin-starred restaurant in Blackrock is priced at about €33 per person, but you will have to be ready because the weekly menu sells out very quickly.
Allta’s Allta Box is a weekly delivery of a 5-course meal for two which involves some cooking and heating, and there’s also a wine pairing option. Again, you’ll have to do some planning as it books up quickly but there is a 2 week and 5 week subscription offer which will make a great gift for your other half that benefits you too; win-win. Boxes go on sale at 12pm each Saturday via their website.
If a wedding anniversary dinner is more of a family affair, Bistro One in Foxrock has a full menu suitable for adults and kids available for collection. There’s also a bake at home range such as family-sized beef brisket lasagnes and homemade pies.
Finally, if you want to cook something impressive with practically zero effort, the Cliff Townhouse have launched their 'heat at home menu', with dishes including a Dublin Bay prawn cocktail, half lobster with chilli and garlic butter, and Wexford strawberries with lemon and lime cream. It's €32.50 (there's a supplement for the lobster) and it's available for collection or delivery. See the menu here.
And if you have the food sorted but want to get some quality wines or spirits delivered, check out our guide on Where to Get Drinks Delivered From.