One of the most important parts about travel is trying the food. I relish the rich dishes in France, the carbs in Italy, and the array of options in America. But when I visited Dublin, I wasn't sure what to eat. Sure, you've got the hearty Irish stews and seafood, but there's so much more to the Irish cuisine. You're in luck because I've wrangled not only some of my favorite places but also got my friend and former Dublin resident to help sort out the best places to eat in Dublin, Ireland.
If you're wondering where and what to eat in Dublin this post will have you salivating.
As Meredith (@the_girl_of_sandwich) explains, this is the ultimate DUB Grub – best food in Dublin! Finding the best food in a touristy city can be tough. There are loads of reviews and lots of places that can lead you astray. No need to cry over your pints of Guinness. Here are 10 top restaurants in Dublin that offer all types of delicious eats. Whether you're a foodie or just want some typical Dublin meals, you're sure to find something worth your while.
The Best Places to Eat in Dublin, Ireland
Let's kick things off with a traditional cuisine that brings together food and music. It's touristy, but for a good reason:
Within the historic neighborhood of Smithfield, you'll find incredible street art, great eateries, youths canvassing the place with no parental supervision, and The Cobblestone. There is a ton of other neat stuff in the surrounding area, but I really wanted to drive home The Cobblestone and the youths. When I first moved to Dublin, my Irish mates told me all about this place. This venue has trad music (traditional, Irish music) every day of the week for you to enjoy. Found just north of the Liffey (which splits the city by north and south sides), it’s an easy walk, cab or bus ride from city center. When you come to Ireland, it’s high on anyone’s list to hear trad music and have a good sing song and this is a great place for it!
Real, trad music!
Proximity to other Smithfield eateries
Address: 77 King St N, Smithfield, Dublin 7, D07 TP22, Ireland
For when you need a break from fish and chips, shepherd’s pie, Irish breakfasts, and Guinness:
It’s a Northside gem, just by the Spire (commonly referred to as the ‘Stiffy on the Liffey’ because of its, erm, astute shape)! This Szechuan style restaurant has a huge menu, but my no-fails are: garlic chili green beans, kung pao chicken, pork dumplings, and the salt and pepper prawns. And best of all, they are BYOB, making this a cheap and cheerful meal for groups.
Family style or individual dishes
Address: 3/14 Cathedral St, North City, Dublin City, Co. Dublin, D01 K8K3, Ireland
Picture from @the_girl_of_sandwich
Perfect lunch option in Dublin, only open Mon-Fri, until 4 pm:
Without a doubt, Green Bench is my favorite sandwich spot for lunch. Their menu includes around 6 PHAT sandwiches/wraps, soups, salads, cheeky desserts and changes daily to maintain Irish, seasonal freshness. I love their chicken wrap, but their pork and brisket wraps tend to sell out earlier! There isn’t seating in the cafe itself, BUT it’s a 3-minute walk to Iveagh Gardens or Stephen’s Green, giving you another chance to explore the greenery in the city via picnic.
Veggie friendly options
Address: 18 Montague St, Saint Kevin's, Dublin 2, Ireland
Casual gourmet Dublin restaurant for when to treat yourself:
I like Richmond because you get really quality, upscale food without the pretension. This year, Richmond received a BIB GOURMAND (HUGE award in the food world) so even the professionals think this place is freaking delicious. I like to say I knew them when, before they were big time. Their Tuesday tasting menu is a helluva deal for a 5-course dinner for around 30 quid (Euros to the non-Europeans)! This south Dublin establishment is close to Portobello Harbour and loads of pubs, so you can head for a tipple after your meal. Try to sit on the 1st floor for the people watching and cozy atmosphere!
Casual, can walk in from site seeing!
Address: 43 Richmond Street South, Saint Kevin's, Dublin 2, Ireland
So, you want to try something casual, like the Irish equivalent of food trucks and enjoy some inexpensive cocktails? I got you:
Eatyard is a go-to because of their variety of food, their access to the fun bar, ‘The George Bernard Shaw’, and their drink deals. In the yard itself you’ll find around 7-10 vendors making completely different food: burgers, wings, Indian dishes, vegan dessert, anything with eggs, raclettes, vegan food, and more. They also frequently host food and drink themed festivals, like their Gin festival, and they partner with different brands too, like Bailey’s for a weekend – think boozy hot chocolate, infused donuts, and fried red velvet Oreos with Bailey’s dipping sauce. My personal favorite is the vendor, Wing It, and I get their tequila lime boneless chicken wings for 5 Euro, for a good size portion. I pair it (sommelier, much?) with a 2 for 12 Euro Moscow mules from GB Shaw for a delicious and affordable meal.
Local, Irish vendors
Address: Richmond St S, Saint Kevin's, Dublin, Ireland
Picture from @the_girl_of_sandwich
6. Bibi’s Café and 7. The Cake Café
You gotta have brunch, and you’ll want to try both local Irish gems, using Irish goods wherever possible:
You just woke up from having one too many Guinnesses the night before. You want something that will help you recover from your delicate state, and give you fuel for the rest of your day site seeing. Bibi’s and The Cake Café always fills that tall order. They both have the freshest menus, and their recipes are full of flavor yet so simple. At The Cake Café, tucked away in a garden just behind a bookstore, you can find prime brunch options, and their wide selection of cakes, cookies, and dessert. If you are celebrating a special occasion, pre-order some espresso cupcakes and you can get them delivered! Now at Bibi’s, you’re going to need to order at least 2 of their house-made brownies – salted caramel and peanut butter. If brownies aren’t your thing, the salted caramel will change your mind. This place is right in the middle of a cute neighborhood and very easy to walk to from town. The staff are tops, and the squash eggs with garlic and chili yogurt cannot be beat – easily one of my most favorite brunch items of all time! I like both places because they are super local, and everything is made from scratch. The kitchens are so small, and you can easily see the chefs make everything as the orders come in!
Made from scratch
Address (Bibi's Café): 14A Emorville Ave, Wood Quay, Dublin 8, Ireland
Address (the Cake Café): The Daintree Building, 8 Pleasants Pl, Saint Kevin's, Dublin, Ire
The Cake Café from @the_girl_of_sandwich: poached egg and peanut rayu on avocado toast
Bibi’s Café: Squash Eggs and the salted caramel brownie
Perfect excuse to get out of Dublin and view one of the most scenic 30-minute train journeys in Europe:
On Sundays, you can easily catch the DART and enjoy the scenic route out of Dublin and into another coastal city, Dún Laoghaire (pronounced Dun Leary). I can’t emphasize enough how pretty the views are while on the train: teal water, white beaches, cliffs, etc. Once you’ve made it, you can walk along the beach, as well as the harbor and take in the ocean. When you’ve worked up an appetite, walk across the street to the Sunday market! You can find coffee stands, frozen desserts, freshly baked bread, tons of produce vendors, falafel wraps, pizza, fresh juice, and SO much more. Find yourself a nice spot on the grass (don’t forget a towel/blanket/jacket to sit on!) and enjoy the people and puppy watching.
Beach walks and cliff walks close by
Address: The Peoples Park, Glasthule, Dublin, Ireland
Open fire and a cold Guinness:
When any friend is visiting me in Dublin, I take them to Library Bar. It’s quintessential ‘old man pub’, a common phrase used in Dublin to describe a quiet, almost too warm pub that serves a great pint of the black stuff. The Library bar is so cozy, and if you’re lucky you can grab a spot on the couches next to the fireplace to keep warm. Especially on those chilly days when you’ve been nonstop site seeing, this is the ideal place to kick back and go on about what you saw that day. Locals say the Guinness is delicious. It’s true, the quality of the pint can differ from pub to pub, depending on the pour, the keg, etc. so trust me on this one!
Address: Exchequer St, Dublin 2, Ireland
10. Drop Dead Twice
Custom cocktails and a great start or end to your night:
Depending on how you’d like your night to go, Drop Dead Twice should definitely be a part of it. The concept is unlike anything I have ever experienced before! After making a reservation for you and your least picky friends, bring your booze haul to DDT just off Francis Street. We brought champagne, tequila, port, and a rose port. By the end of the night, we were full on best mates with our barman who made us spicy margaritas, champagne-tequila spritzers, and espresso martinis…that I can remember or have video evidence from. It was an absolute blast and gave us the chance to try one-of-a-kind drinks, and the music was jumpin’ jumpin’. If you really want to get crazy, check out what is on at Vicar Street where concert gigs and concerts are held regularly (Weird Al, Panti Bliss’ ‘Riot’, Jon Ronson to name a few) and head out before or after DDT!
Address: 18/19 Francis Street, Merchants Quay, Dublin, Ireland
Since Meredith gave you her foodie faves, I'm adding a few to the list that as a tourist, can't be missed in Dublin.
Best pubs in Dublin
You simply can't go to Dublin without stopping into a pub or eight. One of the most iconic pubs in Dublin is Temple Bar. The neighborhood is streaming with people, it's got a gorgeous facade, and you can listen to live music and drink to your heart's content. Temple Bar is famous since it goes back to 1599 when Sir William Temple, a renowned teacher and philosopher, built his house here. Now, it's rightfully a pub. See all of my other favorite pub picks here.
Address: 47/48 Temple Bar, Dublin D02 N725
Have a Guinness at the factory
Going to the Guinness factory and taking the tour is about as touristy as you can get- but for good reason. It's a fun, interactive tour and you get to drink at the end. The rooftop bar also has a great view. You'll learn about the process of Ireland's famous beer in around an hour and a half tour.
Address: St James's Gate, Ushers, Dublin 8, Ireland
Best Ice Cream in Dublin
I make it my mission to try Ice Cream (gelato if we're in Italy) everywhere I travel. Ireland is no different. I scoured for the best ice cream in Dublin and found Murphys made the top of the list. You can expect unique flavors like “caramelized brown bread” and “toasted oat” ice cream made with the highest quality ingredients. Make sure you try a few flavors before you buy.
Address: 27 Wicklow St, Dublin 2, D02 WN51, Ireland
Traditional Celtic Night in Dublin
One of my favorite experiences in Dublin was our traditional Celtic night at Arlington Hotel. The dinner is three course, surprisingly good, and you'll find a traditional Irish feast. The show is fun and entertaining and makes for a memorable night. It's the perfect way to cap off your Dublin experience.
Address: 23-25 Bachelors Walk, O'Connell Bridge, North City, Dublin 1, Ireland
So there you have it! The ten best bites to eat in Dublin, Ireland. Special thanks to my friend Meredith of @the_girl_of_sandwich for helping scour the best places to eat in Dublin and beyond. Give her a follow because she has one of the best palettes and knacks for good food. I should know, I've traveled with her multiple times and she finds the coolest spots with to-die-for cuisine.