I barely need to write this review because if you know anything about food you could look at the pictures and figure out that this was a culinary experience of the highest order. This was lunch on a Saturday during the Christmas period where restaurants have a tendency to fire out any old shit en masse to boost their coffers but despite Coppinger Row being packed to the rafters with Christmas shoppers this was a meal of the highest standard and quite simply some of the best food I've ever eaten in Dublin. Too often amazing food is spoiled by poor service but this meal was complete perfection with the floor staff's attention to detail meaning I left the place with a pep in my step thinking I'd got a great deal for my 35 Euro lunch. To be honest they won me over when the waitress saw me working on my laptop and offered to find a power socket without me even asking. It's little things like that that make you earn big tips.
I had Prawns "A la planca" to start and this is the acid test for any restaurant. Too often you get miserable shitty little frozen prawns in restaurants that have no flavor and the kitchen often makes up for it by giving you lots of them with an overpowering sauce to keep you happy. The chefs in Coppinger have gone for the other extreme. They give you four of the most succulent prawns you could ever imagine and just add a simple but of garlic, chili and parsley and let the prawns do the talking. Your fingers get really fecking messy (typing on a laptop not recommended) but this was a starter of the highest order. Superb.
The main course was hake with chorizo and new potatoes. Every single morsel was savored and just imagine that photo up above was taken on a phone! You eat food with your eyes more than anything and when that plate arrived I knew it would be special. Crispy skin, succulent flesh, spicy rich sauce and wonderful crispy chorizo. I nearly licked the bowl clean!
Before I went in to the restaurant I had no intention of having 3 courses but the first two were so good that I ordered a dessert mainly to see if I could find something wrong. The Panna Cotta. Surely that would let the place down! Nobody ever does a good Panna Cotta. Vanilla cream, who could make that taste out of this world? When it arrived I thought to myself "ha I was right, they've only gone and let themselves down" but oh how wrong I was. A baked fig oozed juices, the biscotti were perfectly crunchy and the Panna Cotta absolutely rocked my world. The hardest things in the world to get right in restaurants are the easiest and this dessert took the meal to another level.
Even little things like coffee were spot on. It might have been an accident that my coffee cup was warm (straight out of the washing machine) but the 2 little nuts were a lovely replacement for the usual chocolate. It's not super cheap to eat here but when the food is this good who bloody cares. I'd have paid 100 Euros for that meal and left happy.The only small thing I could fault them on was their website. I nearly didn't have this food experience because I was asked to download a PDF to see the menu. NOTHING is more annoying and unnecessary than asking me to download a PDF. Restaurants need simple websites with 1.Menu 2. Location 3.Some photos 4.Contact details. It really is that simple but 90% of them get it wrong. I don't want to finish on a bad note though so check Coppinger because a culinary experience this good in Dublin is very very unusual so do yourself a favor and get down there and get stuck in. 99% with the 1% taken off for the website! Outstanding.