As an Irish food writer in London I have a responsibility to guide you to the best and most authentic Irish eating experiences in the capital. There will be Irish menus everywhere but where are the best contemporary ones that accurately reflect that emerald isle of ours? Don’t worry, I’ve got your back!
Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill
One of my favourite London spots, Richard Corrigan’s Bentley’s Oyster Bar & Grill is a perfect place to go on Paddy’s Day. There is their annual Feast of St Patrick’s lunch, which is held tomorrow with live music, proper Irish stew and the unofficial Irish national dish, bacon and cabbage. But it is sold out, so if you don’t have tickets for that make a note to get them early next year, and head to Bentley’s anyway to the bar or restaurant for their menu packed with Irish produce including oysters from Carlingford and Galway and terrific grilled sirloin of Irish heritage beef.
11 – 15 Swallow St, London W1B 4DG
Picture is another favourite. Irish co-owner and head chef, Colin Kelly has created his taste of home via his St Patrick’s Day specials on the a la carte offering all week from Monday 13th – Saturday 18th March. Lamb Stew by an Irish Man, consisting of parsley-crusted slow-cooked lamb neck, crisp lamb sweetbreads and confit vegetables is served for two to share. To follow Tullamore D.E.W-Infused Jellies and Irish Whiskey Fudge will offer a sweet ending with a punchy whiskey kick, there will be Patrick’s Day cocktails and the Picture cheese board will include terrific Irish cheeses (Gubeen, Cashel Blue and Coolea).
19 New Cavendish St, Marylebone, London W1G 9TZ
Pied à Terre
Pied à Terre may have a French name but Irish owner David Moore and Irish chef Andy McFadden always offer a terrific Irish tasting menu for the week of St Patrick’s Day. This year the tasting menu includes Beef Tartare, Oyster Emulsion, Mustard, Sorrel; Dublin Bay Prawns, Beetroot, Pork Belly and from my home county of Waterford, a Comeragh Mountain Lamb “Irish Stew”. The 5 course tasting menu is £65 with wine pairing offered for £40.
34 Charlotte St, Fitzrovia, London W1T 2NH
While The Dairy don’t have a Paddy’s Day menu, it is one of the best Irish owned restaurants in London, and the food and drinks from Robin and Sarah Gill are excellent. Added to this, St Patrick’s Day is The Dairy’s 4th birthday, and to celebrate they are giving a glass of bubbles to every customer, all day tomorrow.
15 The Pavement, Clapham SW4 0HY
40 Shades of Green at 40FT Brewery
40FT Brewery are hosting a celebration of Modern Irish Culture on Saturday 18th (12 noon to 11pm) with food from Robin Gill of The Dairy (cooking Achill Island lamb rib with sour cabbage and toasted seaweed) and Patrick Powell of Chiltern Fire House (doing a contemporary take on Irish stew). There will be a cocktail list from Bán Poitín featuring cocktails some of the top Irish Cocktail bartenders in London. Arveene (Dj/Producer) will be selecting some of the top London based Irish Dj’s to provide the soundtrack. There will also be live performances from some great Irish voices known and unknown, a céilí and the rugby on a big screen. 40FT Brewery will host this event at their brewery in Dalston and will also be offering special brews of their stouts and beers all weekend long.
Bord Bia Annual Irish Food Market
If you are heading to the parade on Sunday, don’t miss the Bord Bia annual Irish food market in Trafalgar Square. Irish chef John Relihan, one of Jamie Oliver’s original fifteen, will be cooking Irish beef and pulled pork wraps, and will be joined by a number of Irish producers including The Pie Cart with Irish slow-cooked beef and Guinness pies; the Salt Beef Bros with slow cured and slow cooked Irish brisket sandwiches; Butchies with their ultimate Irish fried chicken sandwich, made with free-range Irish chicken marinated in Avonmore Irish Buttermilk, served in soft Kerrygold Irish butter toasted buns. The event is part of the Mayor of London’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations.