A New Fish Lover's Paradise On Dublin's Northside
Exactly what Dublin has always needed
For as long as I've been reviewing restaurants in Dublin, I've lamented the lack of good seafood restaurants.
Slowly but surely, the balance has been redressed with some cracking new additions.
Super Miss Sue, Fish Shop, Klaw and Fish Shack have been key in pushing fish to the fore in this city over the last couple of years and the good news is that there is another superb seafood focused restaurant called Fish Bone in Clontarf.
Thankfully, a whole bunch of enterprising restaurant owners have bet the house on fish, which is a welcome relief given the fact that we are a tiny island bordering an ocean on one side.
Seafood should be our national treasure and that is happening in front of our eyes.
Fish Bone sits opposite the entrance to Bull Island, with as stunning a view of Dublin Bay as you'll find.
As you sit looking through a menu that is 90% dominated by seafood, the view is the perfect tapestry and backdrop to your order.
As well as a vast menu, there are four types of fish that are available cooked whole on the bone.
Is there a better way to serve fish than cooked like this with lemon, butter and some chips on the side? Nope.
Starters of pil pil and scallops were superb and the perfect way to warm up for the main course.
The prawns were about as fiery and garlicky as you can get without needing to call the fire brigade, which is exactly as they should be. When the waitress arrived with bread for dunking, it was like a piece of majestic timing that made me beam with happiness.
The mains we ordered were perfectly cooked black sole and a pile of succulent sardines. Given the starters, I'd already decided to give the place a glowing review but the final acid test was how the sardines were cooked.
The simplest and cheapest of fish but when cooked well, a glorious treat. The final test was passed with flying colours.
A superb rich and delicious brownie with perfect vanilla ice cream was the metaphorical cherry on top.
Fish Bone is a brilliant restaurant in the perfect location. It was a cold grey Dublin day but I have visions of eating here (they have a lovely terrace) with the sun shining.
I haven't had that experience yet but when I do next summer, it could be one of the best meals in Dublin. It is a bit of a punt to make a statement like that but this place inspires confidence in its vision.
I get the feeling there will be a serious queue for tables.