Dingle Food Guide
The food in Dingle was incredible. I honestly should not have been shocked, given the proximity to the ocean, along with an abundance of farm land in literally every direction. I had a great meal every day, and even the not-as-great meals were excellent. From the pubs, to the fish and chips, to the breakfast and snacks, and of course the pubs, everything was amazing.
The Fish Box
This is apparently THE place to get fish and chips in Dingle, which was evident by how packed the place was when we arrived. The Fish Box is small, but lively. They have an expansive menu containing great locally sources seafood, from tempura fried prawns, a salmon burger, and even a vegetarian curry option, which I tried a bite of, and its delicious.
What I was really here for was the fish and chips though, and boy-howdy, it was GREAT. The portion of fish was HUGE and you get a ton of fries. I had a hell of a time even getting through half! It was perfect though, not too greasy, and for 12 Euro, you get more than enough to fill up.
Random Restaurant lives on a somewhat quieter side street, just adjacent to the Hideout Hostel which is where we stayed. The ambiance is cozy and more upscale, but not so much that I would feel out of place wearing a pair of jeans.
Random’s menu consists of all locally sourced ingredients and has plenty of interesting options, the food is modern, but recognizable. I ordered Haddock with Shrimp and a White Wine sauce, which was so good. The Fish was fresh and light, and the white wine sauced was rich without feeling heavy. Patrick ordered a steak at a perfect medium rare.
I am not much of a breakfast eater - most days I usually have a few cups of coffee and a piece of fruit to tide me over until lunch. However, given the amount of moving around we were doing every day, this definitely impacted my necessary calorie intake. I had more than one morning where I needed to fuel up before the day.
Bean In Dingle
The Bean in Dingle is an all around excellent cafe, with exceptionally great food options and drinks. They have all of the usual suspects in terms of coffee and teas, along with an awesome choice of pastries and snacks to choose from. You can grab your food to go, however they play great music, and have large windows which make the space comfortable and airy to sit an eat.
My Boy Blue
If you are looking for a delicious brunch, My Boy Blue was the best. They don’t have traditional American breakfast, which is heavy with pancakes, cured meats, and eggs. The food is interesting, and fresh, but you still get a nice big portion to fill up on.
I had the avocado toast, which was more than just a mashed avocado on a slice of bread. This featured a fried egg, arugula, peanuts, radishes, sesame seeds, and some delicious sauce. Really interesting and delicious.
Patrick got the Slow Cooked Spiced Chickpeas with Poached eggs, which reminded me a lot of shashuka, based on the presentation.
There are more pubs in Dingle than can be visited in a 5 day time and they are all filled to the brim on the weekends. But the best part about the pubs in Ireland are the people. There is nothing unusual about striking up a conversation with the person next to you, and we truly met some very interesting people along the way.
Well, by “we” I mean Patrick because I have nearly debilitating social anxiety which leaves my conversation skills somewhat lacking, but that is a topic for another day.
Kennedy’s is a bar that appears to be in a converted house. Its small, cozy, and has probably looked the same for all of eternity.
Here you can move from room to room and that’s it, because there are only 2 rooms. One has a small fireplace with the faint smell of peat. If you have never smelled peat, it just smells like BBQ. The next room over is just as cozy with some antique furniture, which look like it hasn’t move since the bar opened in the 1930’s.
Curran’s was probably my favorite pub that we visited. The pub was originally a shop during the day which would sell socks, hats, sugar, jam, and more and would also serve beer in the evening. The building and pub have been owned and operated by the same family since 1871.
The inside has remained unchanged for who knows how long. They even have snugs, which I learned were corner compartments with locked doors where the women folk would be sequestered away. In the early 20th century, it was still unladylike for women to be seen drinking in public, so the snug was born for accommodate. This way the men wouldn’t have to be offended by the sight of women drinking beer.
Most old pubs no longer have snugs so it was really interesting to see.
An Droichaed Beag
An Droichaed Beag means “The Small Bridge”, and this pub is located on a corner across the street from, you guessed it, a small bridge. The building has been around since the 1700s, and a pub of some fashion since the 1980s. We walked in to find live traditional Irish music playing, which they do 7 nights a week throughout the year.
While there have been renovations done to the space, unlike Kennedy’s to Curran’s which look about the same as they did 100 years ago, there are still nooks throughout this pub that can take you back. Small booths line one wall with stained glass separating each seat.
And last, but not least, I cannot complete this post without writing about Murphy’s. Murphy’s ice cream is probably the best ice cream I have ever had. They have great , but small, range of flavors and nothing was better than they Sea Salt Ice Cream. The ice cream was ever so slightly salty, but finishes with a sweet cream vanilla taste which was so, so delightful. Think salted caramel, without the caramel, which left the overall flavor much lighter and less rich. I honestly had one of these cones 5 days in a row.
We were only in Galway for one day, however I don’t want to let this stop me from writing about two of the places we stopped for food. Everywhere we went in Ireland was excellent for food options, and Galway as no exception.
Dough Bros Pizza
We were recommended Dough Bros by some folks we met in Dingle and it did not disappoint. This food truck turned beloved Pizza Restaurant was such a gem to find. It was pouring rain the entire day we were in Galway, and hot, cheesy pizza was necessary to maintain the will to galavant through the blustery weather.
They have a huge menu of really unique pizzas that are interesting, without being too weird to be on a slice. I opted for the Pesto Pizza and added Lemon Chicken, which was excellent.
The Pie Maker
The one food that I always want when I am facing gloomy weather is savory pie. Chicken pot pie, steak pie, honestly you could bake a stuffed animal in a beautiful, flakey pie crust, and I would maybe contemplate trying to eat it. The Pie Maker was heaven sent after being rained on for several hours.
Both Patrick and I got a beef and stout pie which was delicious. It was out last meal in Ireland and such a great way to finish up a gastronomically satisfying 8 days on that beautiful island.