'Durty' fried chicken, upmarket sandwiches, and a bigger space for a popular dim sum spot. Here’s what’s new in Dublin, and what's coming soon...
Free-range fried chicken from the folks who gave us Sprezzatura? We’re sold. Rathmines’ latest addition Spatched blew through its soft-launch stock in just an hour on Saturday, and given so many 'durty' (their word) items on the menu we’re sure no shortage of sore-headed souls were set right.
Expect lots of oozing and excess here with slow-cooked chicken slathered in heavy sauce, offering add-ons like eggs, cheese fondue, and - this is just getting a bit much - a French toast bun. Oh, and there’s also been talk of carbonara fries, which we can see playing better in Rathmines than Rome. A weekend brunch menu adds pancakes, waffles, and hash browns to the mix, and our money says this will be popular.
Food @ Frank's, Dublin 2
Full food service has finally returned to Frank’s communal table and it’s David Bradshaw at the helm, fresh from stints at Clanbrassil House and Potager, after three years in Michelin-starred Lyle’s in London. Bradshaw’s personal flourishes can be clearly seen from the menu, his fondness for foraging in the seasonal Hegarty’s cheddar crumpet with cabbage and wild garlic, while buttermilk ricotta ice-cream with rhubarb granita looks like an evolution of his past desserts.
What stands out just as much on the opening menu is the value: aside from three larger plates of pasta, charcuterie and cheese (€12), there are croquettes and crudités for €8-9, with the crumpet and an elderflower crème brûlée coming in at a reasonable €4.50. It all looks like ideal accompaniments to a good glass of wine. Food is served from 16:00 Wednesday to Saturday, and it’s walk-in only.
Lucky Tortoise, Temple Bar
We’re reliably informed it’s only hermit crabs that trade in their shells for bigger models, but here’s a tortoise doing much the same. The popular if pokey Aungier Street spot Lucky Tortoise has clearly been bringing in enough business to justify a second space, and we’re sure the Temple Bar tourist traffic will lap up the communal dim sum-style sharing experience.
It’s a much bigger, brighter, airier interior here, all green glass and grey walls, and though there’s some slight (intriguing) variations on the all-in menus, it’s pretty much business as usual with the €28 per-person feast of miso, tofu, dumplings and pancakes available in meat, veggie, or vegan options. You’ll still have to head elsewhere for dessert though.
Three Storey, St. Stephen's Green
Slowly scaling up to tell its three stories (geddit?) since its early-March soft launch, Three Storey has been serving small plates in its café and cocktail bar for a few weeks, but now rounds out the trifecta with the opening of its basement-level restaurant. Leading the kitchen is Richard Borne, formerly of McGettigan's and Chapter One, whose opening menu is classical to the point of seeming safe - though we wouldn’t bet against it being the kind of place that shows how cutting-edge classical cooking can be. The 45-seater will be serving up an 'Irish-themed menu' that runs the gamut from cured trout and spiced pork terrine to sirloin steak and comté custard ravioli.