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West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

Thanks for all the input. Here's the report. Best meal we had was at Aniar - it was really exceptional. Wish we had known about its sister restaurant, Cava, we definitely would have tried that during our time in Galway. In Kenmare, although we made it to O'Donnabhain's for a drink and some music, we dined at Packie's, one of the best meals we had during our visit, and at The Lime Tree, also good, but Packie's is better. Also, the bartenders at the Park Hotel make it worth the stop. They are a pleasure and full of great information. We never made it to Cork - next time. In Cong, we had a great dinner at Cullen's, the pub on the grounds at Ashford Castle, preferring that meal to the formal dining room. We did eat at a lovely cafe on the Aran Islands - up near the ruins - great smoked fish salad, but I don't recall the name. Sorry to have missed Moran's - we drove by several times, but the timing was bad. And we did get to Kirwan's Lane - dinner was good, not great. Looking forward to our next visit. It was a lovely trip. Thanks again.

Sep 03, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

Thanks for pointing me to your post, kschuman! Great stuff.

Jun 08, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

These sound wonderful - thanks so much GreenDragon - can't wait to try!

Jun 08, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

Thank you - we're still collecting great suggestions, so I appreciate your adding this one.

Jun 02, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

Much appreciated, Dave - you haven't steered me wrong yet!

May 05, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

Thanks so much - please keep these wonderful suggestions coming.

Apr 28, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

West of Ireland in August - Recommendations, Please?

We are headed to the West this August: Kenmare (likely with a Cork day trip - lunch); Cong , County Mayo; Galway (with an Aran Island day trip - lunch); and Doonbeg, County Clare. Any thoughts on restaurants, pubs, and cool stuff, generally, would be very much appreciated. We are diverse diners, enjoying both high end and more pedestrian locations, as long as it's worth the stop. Local food always preferred. Thanks so much.

Apr 27, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Happy to do that! And will look forward to your good ideas.

Apr 27, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Dave - I am writing again, since I trust you implicitly and we're on our way back to Ireland this summer - this time to the West: Kenmare (likely with a Cork day trip); Cong , County Mayo; Galway (with an Aran Island day trip); and Doonbeg, County Clare. Any thoughts you might have on restaurants, pubs, and cool stuff, generally, would be very much appreciated. Any thoughts you can share would be appreciated. Many thanks.

Apr 26, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Dave - so sorry for delay. Work has crushed me since return and I'm writing from LA! So sorry that we did not manage to meet up! Is Dec 30 your actual birthday? It is mine. (That would be too weird.) At Pearl we had pheasant, squad, lots of duck foie, and that beautiful black-footed Spanish pig/ham with lovely cheese and quite lovely Rhone wine, if memory serves . . . On NYE, we had truly wonderful tasting at L'Ecrivain - one lovely course after another: chicken ballotine with celeriac truffle velouté (exceptional!)' beef filet with bacons, beautiful lemon sweets, and a perfect rose champagne. We also made it to The Winding Stair - excellent smoked fish, lovely Galway prawns, mussels & chips, venison, and lovely dessert. Even Hugo's, our quick dinner before the theater, did not disappoint - my Thai curry was delicious! As I said, we thanked you often for your tremendous assistance. Please do let me know if I can return the favor!!!

Jan 07, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Last night in Dublin. Dave, we have thanked you often. Were at Pearl on 12/30, for my b-day, quite wonderful game birds; L'Ecrivain for NYE tasting; also got to Winding Stair - more detail on our return home. Many, many Thanks! Also tweeted some of these meals @amyjgreer

Jan 02, 2012
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Dave - You are indeed my hero and I am sure there are countless others who will also be in your debt for taking the time to gather up all of this wonderful information. Should you find yourself heading to the States, I can offer similar assistance in New York and Philadelphia. Thank you so very much.

Sep 08, 2011
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Oh Dave - this is so wonderful and generous of you. I am so grateful. Will look forward to the resto recs.

Sep 07, 2011
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

Thanks for your response! So, first off, we will be visiting for a week, not just NYE - we can hide out in our nice hotel and avoid amateur night on NYE itself, if that is your good advice. In terms of restos, we are pretty easy - good food, any types, we're on vacation and willing to spend, but not if the food is not good. We like to find out where local people like to eat - both on an everyday and special occasion basis. Also like to know what Dubliners are finding new and interesting in food. Since we have some time, we should be able to explore a variety of price ranges and cuisines, if there is a variety to explore. Love traditional Irish music, so some ideas on where we could find that would be great. However, we are open to new things. (Gosh, I'm being usefuless!) We aren't all night drinker types, but good music will hold our attention. Is this at all useful? Again, I so appreciate your willingness to assist!

Sep 06, 2011
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

Dublin for New Years

What can I say? It's been a couple months since my vacation and I'm planning this one now - much needed already. A girl can dream. Help me think lovely thoughts with your recommends for pubs and restaurants for our celebration of the New Year! (It's my first - long awaited time.) Many of the Dublin posts seem a bit stale, in terms of timing. Many thanks for any suggestions.

Sep 03, 2011
amy626 in U.K./Ireland

SF Great Dining at the Bar?

Thanks Chuckl - Really, really liked Anchor and Hope - had a lovely light dinner at the bar - the food was terrific, the vibe was perfect, and the company turned out to be wonderful.
great recommendation in every way!

Aug 06, 2010
amy626 in San Francisco Bay Area

SF Great Dining at the Bar?

Thanks everyone for the suggestions!

Aug 04, 2010
amy626 in San Francisco Bay Area

SF Great Dining at the Bar?

I'm headed to SF on a short business trip solo, and my time will be a little unpredictable. Where can I get a really great meal without a reservation, perhaps sitting at the bar? Doesn't have to be fancy, just really terrific. Other suggestions for this kind of dining - without having to wait too long, and without a reservation also appreciated. Staying near Union Square (of course), but willing to hop a cab.

Aug 01, 2010
amy626 in San Francisco Bay Area

Unstellar Stella? Pizzareria Stella Revisted.

We finally got to Pizzeria Stella and were terribly disappointed. We had very high hopes, generally being fans of Starr's endeavors. And usually being willing to pay - often dearly - for the quality and consistency he usually offers. But this was really not great pizza. (And we LOVE pizza.) The crust was positively spongy - nothing about it was crisp. And nothing about what was on top of that crust was particularly memorable,
The olives were lovely. The salad was tasty (if small for the price). The wines were well chosen. But the pizza . . . the truth is, our delivery guy does a better job. And that's just sad. The best pizza in town's still at Osteria. Hate to say it, but the bar pizza at Table 31 is better than what they're serving at Stella.

Nov 29, 2009
amy626 in Philadelphia

Good pizza, tonight, below 59th Street, where we can not feel rushed?

Based on another Chow post, we tried La Pizza Fresca at 31 East 20th - http://lapizzafrescaristorante.com/ho... - this weekend - the food was great - the pizza was terrific, the butternut squash risotto was delicious, and the salad was great too. Huge wine list. And they take reservations for parties over 5 people.

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La Pizza Fresca
31 E 20th St, New York, NY 10003

Nov 09, 2009
amy626 in Manhattan

Philadelphia Specialty Food Shops Needed

John & Kira's chocolates - http://www.johnandkiras.com/
Challahman a/k/a Michael Dolich at the Four Worlds Bakery - for a variety of breads - http://fourworldsbakery.vpweb.com/
Miel - for breads, pastries and chocolates
Steep - for teas
(I'm sure I'll think of others . . .)

Jun 20, 2009
amy626 in Pennsylvania

PHX - Visiting Foodie Seeking to Impress

Thanks so much everyone - decided on noca for the Monday night. Haven't yet chosen Tuesday, but will be car-less, so will have to be reasonably close and will be using the Google-map to help make that call. From what you all have said, you make the taxi ride sound well worth the price. I so appreciate all of the wonderful suggestions. a

Feb 27, 2009
amy626 in Phoenix

PHX - Visiting Foodie Seeking to Impress

I mentioned that to them . . . I really appreciate your efforts on my behalf!
a

Feb 23, 2009
amy626 in Phoenix

PHX - Visiting Foodie Seeking to Impress

Thanks for the suggestions. So you know, I tried to make a reservation at Sea Saw for Monday earlier today and learned that they are now closed on Mondays and Tuesdays . . . .

Feb 23, 2009
amy626 in Phoenix

PHX - Visiting Foodie Seeking to Impress

Hunt - thanks for your questions and sorry for the generalties. Staying at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge. Will have a car. Will drive for good food! No budgetary constraints. Like most cuisines. The real issue that I'm running into is that one of these meals is for Monday night and no one seems to be open! The food's the thing, good wine or cocktails also appreciated - vibrant or quiet, either works. Guidance appreciated.
a

Feb 23, 2009
amy626 in Phoenix

PHX - Visiting Foodie Seeking to Impress

I'll be visiting Phoenix/Scottsdale area next month and will be doing some business dinners. In addition to being a foodie myself, my guests are also totally into great food and wine. Your suggestions would be most appreciated.

Feb 22, 2009
amy626 in Phoenix

Matyson lately?

Sign up at their website to get a weekly e-mail and you will always be in the know about the spectacular tasting menus. We live in the neighborhood and hadn't been there in a while, but started going back this summer with some regularity and NEVER have been disappointed. The food has just been exceptional.

Oct 09, 2008
amy626 in Pennsylvania

Should we go to Rae?

So, the deal on Rae is that the food is almost always great and the service is either awful or spotty. The last time we were there, the food was divine, but it looked like a frat party. We were seated near the rest rooms, where some customers (?) were congregated with their beers for no apparent reason, and the ladies room door was broken so it kept slamming shut. I finally got up and "fixed" the door open (by jamming some paper towels under it), to prevent the shuttering of every person in the dining room every time it slammed. Eventually some person who actually worked there decided this wasn't a good idea (why?). During the same meal - did I mention the food was really, really great? - we attempted to order a bottle of wine, only to have the wrong bottle brought several times (each of the "wrong" bottles was substantially more expensive than the one we ordered, and there was story about why this was so difficult). Our wine showed up eventually. I'm thrilled to hear they're trying to find a new GM. Because we loved going there. I would go. We somehow keep go back there for the food, even with the odd service. And, I should mention that some of the servers have been really terrific, dealing with the otherwise chaotic management (or complete thereof). Be amused - and know that you'll be well fed.

Jul 16, 2008
amy626 in Pennsylvania