What I Ate in Dublin

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My first morning in Dublin I was HUNGRY. I’d found a blog post (from a hilarious blogger) on the best breakfasts in Dublin and decided to follow his recommendation and go to Odessa. I was not disappointed. I got there just as it was opening (as advised) and I’m glad because everyone else had reservations and it got full pretty quickly. I had the salmon eggs benedict and my goodness, this was good. I think I said in my TripAdvisor review that it was the best breakfast I’d ever had. I’d still say this is true.

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I was using my favourite TripAdvisor offline city guide quite a lot in Dublin, and it lead me to a place called 777. When I told my B&B host that I was going there, she said “oh…that’s a trend place. Yeah, that sure is trendy”. I think that’s the best way to describe 777 – trendy. I was in a dress with an oversized cardigan and I felt bad that I hadn’t gone home to dress up a bit. I stuck out like a sore thumb.

The food was ridiculously expensive. This was my most expensive meal in Dublin. I couldn’t decide on which main to have so I chose two starters. The waiter was pretty good with giving recommendations, and the food really was yummy. But I was still hungry by the end of it…

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So I had their brownie. OMG. This is the best brownie ever.

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One place my host did recommend is Rustic Stone. I happened to find it just as I was super hungry and went to try it out. This place had great food but the best service I’ve seen – ever. I had some nice tempura salmon for starters.

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And this “outrageous orange” salad as a main. This salad was SO GOOD. In fact, I really ought to try and recreate it. The menu read as if the chef was chatting to you, telling you the benefits of each dish and what he loved about it all. Touches like that make the dining experience that much more enjoyable.

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As I was looking for a breakfast spot, I came across vegetarian greasy spoon Cornucopia. They had the BEST gluten free bread I’ve ever tasted. And look at all those beans!! The fried onion stuff on the right was a little lost on me though…

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For my last meal in Dublin I was looking for a boxty. A lot of Irish food is the same as British food (as I found my asking such ignorant questions as “do you have mince pies here?”) but there was one thing that can’t be found in British cuisine – a boxty. These potato pancakes were the last thing to check off my Dublin list so I searched and found Gallagher’s Boxty House (check out their website it’s got such a cool design!) The boxtys there are pretty expensive. I went for the steak one which came in at just under 20 euros. I thought that I’d still be hungry at the end of it, but surprisingly I wasn’t. I hope that the price tag came from good quality beef because it seemed like a very small and simple meal for the price tag.

The food in Dublin was expensive, but people are really excited about food there and that’s what made eating out so much fun. There are so many trendy places, mixed with the down to earth pubs…there really is something for everyone there. There are a lot of different places to eat in Frankfurt but I don’t feel that people are as passionate about eating out as a hobby here like there are there. Perhaps I’m wrong in thinking that. Anyway, there were so many things I didn’t get round to doing in Dublin that I’ll be there again hopefully some time soon!

Frankfurt’s Best Sandwich?

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The question on everyone’s lips, of course, is “where should an up-and-coming hipster eat lunch?”

I have asked myself this countless times, and so that’s why I was relieved that there’s a new hotspot in town catering to hungry lunchtime hipsters. And that place is Maxie Eisen.

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Just one block up from my favourite bar, Plank, it’s also catering to the exact same crowd. It’s not owned by the same people, just business friends who wanted to open up a sandwich restaurant. But before we get into those, let me talk about the homemade lemonade. It was SO good. I remember it had tea in it (which is weird but let’s go along with it) and was the perfect partner for the epic sandwich I ate…

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There is a shitake mushroom vegetarian version, but if you like meat (and you will REALLY love this meat) then go for one of their two main sandwiches – the Reuben or the pastrami. I went for the pastrami and I really, really think this is the best sandwich in Frankfurt. It was so juicy, so meaty, with a perfect amount of mustard in it. Share some home made fries with your sandwiches as they are to die for as well.

The downside is that everyone and their aunt wants to eat here right now, so you need to get there early or miss out. I got there bang on 12 noon and we got a table easily. By 12.15 it was full.

You can find Maxie Eisen at Münchener Str. 18, 60329 Frankfurt am Main

Things I Ate in London (Week Two)

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As you’ll see, my food-based adventures took a less than healthy turn in my second week. I just went for comfort food all the time, probably because I was pretty tired and the hotel bed was small and not so nice and I was beginning to wish I had British things available to me all the time. Is it possible to feel homesick for the place you’re still in?

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Probably one of my favourite restaurants of the trip was Mother Mash – a restaurant that only serves mashed potato, sausages and pies. I’d found it on the TripAdvisor app but couldn’t really find it. It was only when I got lost in Soho that found it!

I had the colcannon which, I must say, wasn’t as good as the stuff my Irish ex used to make me, but the lamb sausages were really good – and the gravy. Omg. The gravy.

There are vegetarian and gluten free options so everyone is happy!

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When I read that my hotel’s breakfast might not be the best around, I did a little google for other breakfast options in the area. One of them was Koya – an udon restaurant. I miss Japanese breakfasts SO MUCH but don’t have the time to make them at home usually. The above breakfast was pretty expensive at 20 pounds, but to be fair it did fill me up for the whole day and I didn’t eat a thing else until breakfast the next day!

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I paid extra to have natto – fermented soy beans. Very much an acquired taste and they pong a bit too but they are SO yummy on rice. Natto is so stringy I always end up getting some on my chin, which stinks for the rest of the day…

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I’d heard very good things about the cafe at Foyles, a massive (and wonderful) bookshop. There was free wifi, gluten free cakes and so many different teas and quirky drinks to choose from. The seats were old church pews which were nice but made my bum hurt after a while.

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It’s no secret that Camden Market is my favourite place in the world. I stayed very much in Soho for most of the two weeks and only left once – to visit my favourite place.

I skipped most of the market as it just doesn’t appeal to me as much as it used to (it’s so full of tourists and the items on sale tend to be random things imported from Asia) so I headed straight to the food market.

Camden’s craft beer seems to be a big thing right now, and I tried the Hells beer. It was really light which meant it went really well with the food on offer…

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…especially the Christmas cake brownie I chose over real food!! AHHHH that brownie was SO GOOD and the girl selling it said that the Christmas one was the least popular!

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Very near to work was a Mexican restaurant called Tortilla. It’s a fast food restaurant which was a shame as it would have been nice to spend a little longer with my meal there, but it was really yummy anyway. Everything is fresh and this is very much clean eating. There are vegetarian options (though they say they don’t serve refried beans as they are too unhealthy) and I had the corn tortillas instead of wheat.

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TripAdvisor wouldn’t stop trying to get me to go to Bodeans – a BBQ restaurant. I was a little worried about going there since I’d not been eating very healthily but then I gave in and gave it a go.

With all the groups queuing up outside, I felt really cheeky being able to slip through since I was eating alone. Hehe.

One of the things I loved about Bodeans the most was the wide range of rare beers available. It took me ages before I was able to choose which one to have – but it was really yummy!

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A slightly annoying that there were mirrors in front of me – I don’t want to be watching myself eat messy food!

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I chose the pork sandwich, which was apparently voted the best sandwich in London! The sandwich itself was ok. I think I would have been happier with a burger (…I’m always happier with a burger…) but I chose sweet potato chips instead of regular chips and that was a very good decision. The sauce was super yummy too.

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Everyday we would take it in turns to choose where to have lunch, and when I was writing the post about what I ate in my first week in London, I noticed that Leon had a very yummy sounding Christmas wrap so I decided to have that for lunch. It was DELICIOUS. SO good. I love the chips there too – being big and crinkly, it just makes them taste even better.

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In an effort to find the nicest wifi cafe near to me (I’d need a year in London to find the best on in the city!) I went off to 5th View, which is on the 5th floor of the massive Waterstone’s at Piccadilly. Sadly, they’d switched it up a bit and turned it into a cocktail bar and it was so busy I couldn’t get a seat by the windows. I sat at the bar, gazing over the tops of people’s heads to look at the London skyline. I decided not to eat properly there and just had some snack sausages and a lovely cordial drink while I internetted.

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As I was going round the most British of shops, M&S, I decided not to eat out but to eat from their ready made foods. They had a great selection of yummy foods from which a certain amount of the money goes to charity. I had a very yummy and slobby dinner on my bed watching tv!

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On the last night the people I was working with treated me to a slightly posh dinner at Newman Street Tavern. It was a lovely modern pub, with great atmosphere. I started with a chowder (note to self: start making chowder again…)

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And ended with a shepherd’s pie. OM NOM NOM!

Well, as you can see, my second week wasn’t exactly green, but I think at Christmas it’s perfectly fine to eat a little more than normal. Comfort food ahoy!

There were so many places I missed off my list that I hope I can make it to London again soon to finish them all off…though I think London will ALWAYS have something new to try!

What I Ate in London (Week One)

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Would you like some London food porn? OF COURSE YOU DO – if there’s one thing I know about my readers, it’s that you like cats and food. I’ve not seen a single cat this week so to make up for the lack of cat pictures have some photos of food.

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YES that’s hummus! It seems the magic phrase here in London right now is “street food” and on my walk to work I noticed a place called Yalla Yalla who do Lebanese street food. I would love to go on a foodie tour of Beirut but unfortunately it’s not the dafest place to be and so I have to make do with what’s available…

The hummus was amazing. Really yummy. And with nice warm bread to dip in…MMMM…

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I also ordered something which I would have avoided normally but the menu told me this dish had won some kind of prize. So that’s how I ended up ordering chicken livers in pomegranate sauce. It really REALLY was yummy.

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Breakfast at Pret a Manger! I have breakfast at the hotel but it’s really busy and also I don’t have wifi there so I like to go to Pret to do internety things for half an hour. Their porridge is pretty good and you can choose from a selection of toppings.

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Probably my favourite food of this trip. I really want to go back to Carnaby Burger Co but I’m not sure I’ll have the time.

I was walking around the Carnaby St area looking for food and saw a sign in the window saying that they had free wifi! Free wifi AND burgers?! Hello heaven!! The burger was really good and the chips…omg the chips…

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Creamy smooth guacamole AND chilli sauce. What a combo! It was heaven.

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Crussh is one of the many “healthy fast food” outlets that deal mainly in smoothies, wraps and sushi. They advertised organic porridge but I chose a breakfast bowl instead – and was shocked to find that it was icy cold!! Probably one for the summer…

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Somewhere in Chinatown I found a little Chinese bakery and couldn’t help buying a bao – Chinese steamed bun with filling. This one had meat inside it…I was trying to find some kind of niku-man like I had in Japan. It wasn’t in any way like that but it was SOOOOO yummy.

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I met up with a girlfriend and went to Shoryu – a ramen place.

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They had gluten free ramen!! It was super yummy and really hit the spot. MMMM look at that kara-age!

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They had gluten free niku-man here but it wasn’t really right…and the gluten free-ness of it made it kinda yucky. Good job the ramen was awesome!!

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I finally found Leon and tried their breakfast pot. It was tiiiiiny but contained everything you’d expect in an English breakfast – beans, sausage, beans, bacon, beans and egg. With beans on top. It was really yummy but didn’t fill my up til lunch, that’s for sure!

I certainly haven’t been eating healthily in London but pfft, it’s Christmas and I’m on holiday and I love food!

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