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Overviewl’Ecrivain is a Michelin-starred Dublin city centre restaurant where seasonal Irish ingredients are given the French gastronomic treatment. It is a timelessly stylish restaurant with a comfortable bar, private dining room and a charming covered roof terrace.
From their humble beginnings in a basement on Fitzwilliam Street, Derry and Sally-Anne Clarke have created a real shining star in the culinary lexicon of Irish restaurants. It was probably always inevitable that Derry would end up on the Irish food map. His father owned John Clarke and Son on Wellington Quay, Dublin, and was one of the first Irish importers of caviar and other gourmet foodstuffs.
l’Ecrivain stands on the site of two old Georgian Coach Houses/mews in its own charming courtyard. Inside, there is a large kitchen, main dining room and mezzanine and three private dining areas. The baby grand piano, which has been the focus of many a celebrity sing-along over the years, is located in the main dining area upstairs and is a delightful feature.
Derry and his team use well-sourced local ingredients to create simple, delicious dishes with a definite French influence. It is no wonder that l’Ecrivain has received so many awards over the years including a coveted Michelin star.
The main dining room is a convivial setting and the perfect place to linger over a leisurely dinner. Menus change with the seasons and the availability of ingredients but no matter the menu presented you will have a remarkable dining experience.
Some exquisite dishes that might appear on the menus include an amuse-bouche of celeriac, wild mushroom and truffle velouté, followed by tender, boned and rolled quail served with beetroot purée and crispy, buttery Savoy cabbage. Also on the menu you might find seared scallops with cauliflower purée, crubeens and pickled mushrooms as well as Castletownbere cod with parsley purée, salsify, and roasted pearl onions. When in season, pheasant will make an appearance perhaps served with with parsnip, cured bacon and blackberry beetroot dressing. As you can see, the finest, seasonal and local ingredients are turned into the most exquisite creations.
Desserts are also creative and decedent. For example, for a twist on the humble banana split, slices of barely roasted banana sit beside caramelised filo crisps, banana semifreddo and an incredible banana pudding. As for the vanilla panna cotta with poached rhubarb and strawberry sherbet, it is melt-in-the-mouth moreish. For a savoury end to the meal, the selection of Irish farmhouse cheeses are terrific. For those who still have room, the feast finishes with handmade petit fours and tea and coffee.
Service at l’Ecrivain is smart and warm with well-informed staff on hand to offer recommendations on wine pairings. The wine list offers an insight into Derry Clarke’s serious passion and knowledge. There are some real gems here in every price range and for any taste.
For really special Irish food in elegant surroundings for any occasion, l’Ecrivain has got to be on the list.
Derry and his team use well-sourced local ingredients to create simple, delicious dishes with a definite French influence.
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