What should we know about Joli in Stoneybatter?
It was a bleak day when Love Supreme announced its closure after eight years of waking up the hipsters in the ‘batter, but when Neil and Bud of Drumcondra coffee truck Bua decided to take over, we knew we'd be in good hands.
Joli is almost like a new and improved version of Love Supreme, keeping the same Roasted Brown coffee and friendly staff, who sling out toasties by day and Mexican fare by night. El Milagro are on the tacos - the mother/son combo behind one of our favourite moving taquerias.
What should we have?
Their antojitos (snacks) are perfect little bites to start with. The totopos (house-made corn tortilla chips) are an ideal crunchy vessel for the guacamole and pico de gallo, but for €7.50 a pop we would have liked a bit more guac.
The chicharron pork belly was full of flavour, served on a chipotle black bean puree, with a side of guacamole - a salty fat bomb that paired perfectly with the orange wine we were drinking, and definitely better value at €8.
We finished snacks with papas el milagro - perfectly cooked potato cubes topped with mozzarella, roasted green peppers and slow cooked onion. We’ve had these a few times and they always hit the table lukewarm, meaning the cheese never gets as melty as we'd like - we keep ordering it though.
The birria tacos are always a (messy) highlight, bursting with juicy slow-cooked beef brisket, topped with diced onion and coriander. These are some of the best tacos in the city if you ask us, but we forced ourselves to try others this time.
Gobernador (king prawn) tacos were a little too greasy, despite the prawns being fresh and bouncy, and the veggie taco with potato, cactus & poblano chilli was very generous, but tasted quite similar to the papas el Milagro, so maybe don't order both.
What about the wine?
The night we went happened to be a by-the-glass collab with Veraison, the folks who supply the likes of Fish Shop, Loose Canon, and Chapter One (and much of the Grower Champagne in the country). Their selection really made the night special, so keep your eyes peeled for their next one in October.
Veraison's ultra-knowledgeable Luke Byrne told us that the Panda Party pet nat from Mosel was produced by one of the oldest wineries in the world, and we loved its bone-dryness and tiny delicate bubbles. The standout for us was the Jura Chardonnay, aged for 12 months in old oak, with flavours of brioche and lemon curd on the palette.
Joli’s wine list generally is well varied, with a focus on organic and biodynamic varieties, and options on tap if more sustainable wine is your jam. We’re a fan of their Austrian Gewurztraminer, which we've found to be a great pairing for the robust, meaty tacos.
Why should I go?
Joli nails the whole day-to-night vibe. Bingo on Wednesdays is hilarious, and the chances of winning are high, while jazz evenings on Thursdays are very chill - perfect for date nights. Joli is a local treat, and there's nothing more special than seeing Maribel, the Mexican Mama of the mother/son combo cooking and serving her homemade dishes. Definitely book in advance.
Nights @ Joli (Wednesday - Saturday)
57 Manor Street, Dublin 7