Redbrick terraced houses, hipsters and now, an exciting culinary scene; Stoneybatter was once the grim setting for Angela’s Ashes, now it’s a thriving alternative neighbourhood with a surprising selection of exciting restaurants.
Smithfield has traditionally been most renowned for its September horse fair but a rejuvenation plan that started in 1997 has seen the area’s main square transformed into an expansive cobbled space. It’s now home to the Jameson Distillery, Lighthouse Cinema and the Generator Hostel.
Stoneybatter and Smithfield are traditional working class areas of Dublin that have developed into buzzing city hubs. They’ve been described as Dublin’s answer to Shoreditch and they have a line up of restaurants and cafés to match this claim.
Our tour starts at the north end of Manor Street where Soulful, a coffee house and bistro, opened its doors in February 2013. It’s a buzzing spot where the emphasis is not just on coffee, but on healthy food and happy customers. Like the name suggests this is food, with a little bit of soul.
Stoneybatter’s Slice is the new D7 outpost of the people who brought you the Cake Café. Of course there’s lots of cake but you’ll also find a surprising range of healthy options from raw muesli and several different porridge options to a ‘virtuous seed and nut slice’. Plus, there’s an exciting range of brunch cocktails, that’s right – breakfast drinks that don’t involve any dodgy early houses.
L Mulligan Grocer
Cleverly disguised as a regular old man’s pub, the exterior of this renowned Stoneybatter bar belies the exceptional food and hipster clientèle you’ll find inside. Gastro pubs have not gripped Dublin the way they have London, but the two most notable exceptions are Mulligans & The Exchequer. With the emphasis on Irish food and producers, and a regularly changing menu if you can put up with all those hipsters you’re in for some good eating at Mulligans.
Lilliput has been trading from this spot on a hidden residential street off Stoneybatter’s main thoroughfare for seven years now. Its longevity can be attributed to a passion for food, a real concern for the local community and charity involvement. Quality produce from suppliers like Bean and Goose and The Real Olive Company make this hidden gem a big hit with the locals.
Wuff is a neighbourhood bistro serving top class food from their cosy premises on Smithfield’s Benburb Street. Prime produce, innovative dishes and careful presentation make this a fine choice for a night out. Apparently they do a mean brunch too.
Promoting creative, cultural and community activities, Third Space on Smithfield Square describes itself as “Not working space, not living space, but Third Space.” It offers a simple, reasonably priced menu in the aim of encouraging people to gather regularly, easily, informally and inexpensively.
For a small island Ireland is a notoriously poor consumer of fish. At Dublin Underground we love hearing about quality local fishmongers. Kish Fish on Smithfield’s Bow Street looks more like a wholesaler but they sell to the general public too and apparently their Smithfield shop is popular with the locals. Pick up fresh seafood, fish and special daily deals and boost your omega threes.
K Chido Mexico
Our last stop is the bright graffiti building on Chancery Street that is home to a food truck selling authentic Mexican food. K Chido Mexico is attracting high praise for its tasty tacos and burritos while brightening up the journey just a little bit for passing commuters on the luas line.