Dun Laoghaire has always been a bit of an anomaly – by its seaside location you would imagine a town teaming with fresh seafood restaurants and interesting eateries, but it's never really had the pull factor that neighbouring villages of Glasthule and Monkstown have. In recent years, however, there's been real investment in the area, and if you ignore the weirdly deserted shopping centre smack bang in the centre, the area is looking up. There’s a great choice of eateries to try on your next trip – throw in a walk on the pier and a root in one of many charity shops in the area and you have yourself the perfect day out.
Kick off your day at Shoe Lane who are serving up the best coffee in Dun Laoghaire, as well as plenty of pastries and delicious sausage rolls. They've also just announced that they’re starting to accept re-usable cups again – more of this please!
Two Beans is another great spot for coffee in the area and they hold sustainability at the centre of their offering, only partnering with roasters who source their coffee directly from farmers and pay them fair and square. So you can feel extra virtuous as you sip your brew.
You’ll probably spot Strudel Artisan Bakery by the hungry looking queue forming outside from around 8am. One glance at their Instagram will make you understand how they won Bakery of the Year at the Independent Retail Awards, just one year after they opened in 2018. Get there early as they are known to sell out.
The newest addition to the area, Portobello native Bibi’s has opened a little outpost right on the seafront. They have tables outside and recently opened indoor dining too, and we can’t wait to see how this place develops over the next few months. It's a perfect place to grab a bite to eat and take a stroll down to the 40 Foot for a dip.
You may not come across The Cali Kitchen by chance as it's a little hidden away on the grounds of the Royal Marine hotel, but it's worth a trip for the most Instagrammable brunch around.
Almost time for elevenses and we’re headed to Le Chocolat de Frèd, which is a little bit of France on our own doorstep. As you can deduce from the name, chocolate is their game (it's on tap, literally), but they also have a savoury galette menu for a light lunch.
Breakaway Coffee operates from an unassuming little hatch on York Road, but are dishing out lovely coffee and recently started sourcing toasties from Golden Brown which look verrrry gouda (sorry). Cakes are sourced from local favourite Rustic Honey, and it's the perfect spot to visit after a stroll down the West Pier.
While Soup have expanded into Smithfield, their original Dun Laoghaire location will always have our hearts. They're serving up some of the best ramen in Dublin and their specials board is always full of interesting options. If you see prawn laksa, do not miss it, trust us, plus a portion of deep-fried kimchi ‘for the table’, naturally.
Oliveto at The Haddington House is home to possibly the nicest beer garden in all of Dublin. They have a full menu indoors, but there is really nothing better than nabbing a precious outdoor table here on a sunny day and wiling away the afternoon munching on pasta, pizza and risotto, and sipping cocktails.
The sister restaurant to DeVille’s in Dalkey (which is notoriously difficult to get a booking in), Casper & Giumbini’s is a bigger location which allows us to quench our French onion soup craving on a more regular basis. The menu has something for everyone, so this is the place to book for a family lunch or girls’ night out.
You probably recognise Zero Zero from the food market scene over the years, and since they opened their permanent shop a few years ago they've certainly built up a dedicated local following. They have limited indoor seating at the moment but have commandeered a few parking spaces out front to create a relaxed outdoor area.
If you're a sushi fan, Michie Sushi is the place to go in Dun Laoghaire. It's a very small shop with only around 20 seats so take this to go and enjoy it in People's Park.
An authentic Chinese restaurant may not seem like the usual place to stop in for dessert (and this one clearly could have gone in the dinner section also), but alongside a broad menu including some dishes showcasing different Chinese regions which are only available through pre-order, Nunki Tea House is serving up some of the most beautiful handmade Japanese cakes and milk tea to finish off your day.
Pop into The Lighthouse Bar on your way back to the DART for a drink and you might get swayed by a gig in the Top Deck as they kick off a series of socially distanced shows. This spot is a sister of Eatyard so expect some good bites including Nice Guy burgers if you’re still peckish.
Have we missed any of your favourite Dun Laoghaire spots? Let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.