Finnegans: Comfortable and friendly with Great Food
Finnegans on Denny Street, the centre of the business district in Tralee, is the sort of place you don’t feel sneaking up on you until you’re already ansconsed at a basement stone roomed table enjoying an aperatif and studying the excellent menu.
A real fire burns in the grate and, although it’s 18 degrees outside ( a very warm spring night for Ireland), you feel it’s just about right.
Your host fills your glass with a perfect Wolf Blass Chardonnay as you give your order and you feel as though you are at home and this whole perfect place is yours alone.
I started with the tian of smoked salmon with baby prawns. Perfectly smoked salmon, even more sublime baby prawns. It took me ages to eat – both because there was plenty there and because I was savouring every morsel.
I stared at the burning coals in the fire, my eye wandered naturally to a flaming candle on our table, and my main curse was presented.
My black sole was served on the bone, perfectly cooked with a white wine sauce and a garnish of prawns and monkfish. At first I wanted more, because I longed for the taste to linger – then I realised I was already more than stuffed.
I was persuaded (nay, forced) to order dessert and a deep fried ice cream arrived like an ice cream sring roll with a plum compote that was on the right side of sharp.
Coffee was freshly brewed, served with pouring cream at my request. A Drambuie was perfectly presented in the correct liqueur glass without ice, just as I like it.
I don’t know what it cost, it was someone else’s treat – but it wasn’t overly expensive and you really do get what yo0u pay for here.
Adda country kitchen atmosphere and excellent service and this is a recipe for a perfect gastronomic evening.
- Food and Dining
- Wine Tasting
- Luxury Travel
Oyster Tavern: Delicious Locally Caught Seafood
This country pub cum seafood restaurant deserves a very secial mention both for super atmosphere and even better food.
It’s a real pub where elderly men sit on high stools at the bar downing pints of Guinness and whiskey chasers, but with tables where those in the know come to saour the most delectable seafood. In the restaurant area take note of the very unusual curtains tied back and held by gold painted shells.
I started with baked oysters – completely juicy with a savoury crumb topping. My dinner partner had mussels but they were small and disappointing – at the end of the mussel season it was really to be expected.
I followed this with a lobster served with lemon butter. This was real lemon and real butter (how often have I been served margarine with a squirt of Jiff lemon?). It was accompanied by baked potato and a crisp and generous side salad. My companion had crab claws – enormous meaty things drenched in garlic butter.....again, real cloves of garlic and real butter.
I resisted dessert, but my companion knew the score and insisted on ordering ice cream – a selection which consisted of chocolate, strawberry and mint choc. Delightful and, ‘m sure, home made.
This restaurant comes Egon Ronay recommended and I’m not surprised.
A fine Chablis accompanied the meal and at 30Euro a bottle it was properly chilled and good value.
I can’t wait to return. Pity I’m not in Tralee more often.
- Food and Dining
- Wine Tasting
Restaurant David Norris: Stop by to See Paul's Work
What makes this place so special is that my son Paul is one of the chefs working there! He considered this to be a great career opportunity, and from the reviews online, it would certainly do well on anyone's resume.
The descriptions of the menu make it sound incredibly interesting...
- Family Travel
Mozart's Bistro: A Cozy Place
This was where Paul was working at the time we made the trip. We went in during the afternoon rush and it was quite packed, but they were able to seat our rather large party.
We were only having a small snack so I don't feel qualified to give a detailed review of the menu & food.
It was certainly the kind of cozy, warm-natured place I would like to re-visit for a relaxed meal.
- Family Travel
Sean-ogs: Not impressed
I don't wish to comment on the bar food, which may be fine, but the traditional buffet was poor.
At 11-12 euro for a meat with trimmings (veg potato etc) it is about right in terms of price (i.e a rip-off, but normal for ireland). The plate was however at best lukewarm, items were missing and the whole plate could best be described as a 'mush'.
I guess that earlier in the day it might have been acceptable, but 3 pm on a Sunday afternoon means very limited options in Tralee and some rather questionale 'leftovers'.
The restaurant above Heatons shop on the high street might well be a better bet, but it was closed by the time we found it.
Tralee - hardly anywhere open on good friday so it was pringles and a dodgy sandwich in the bedroom!
Glenbeigh - Towers pub, good grub!
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