Thursday, March 16, 2006

The Ard-Ri Dining Room

Last night, in honour of St Patrick's Day on Friday and in a selfless act of Celtic fraternity in advance of Ireland's game against England on Saturday, "Eat your way around the world in London" decided to patronise the Emerald Isle.

We set our sights upon the Ard-Ri Dining Room in light of this review in the Guardian. I - not being proud - followed Matthew Fort and washed down half a dozen Cuan oysters with a pint of Guimess, then Irish Stew followed by a selection of Irish cheeses- with a good red wine.

I wasn't being original or incisive but it was fine food, and I thought - not for the first time - that there is little better than simple dishes that have stood the test of time expertly prepared from fresh ingredients.

Paul started with traditional Irish "tiger prawns in tempura batter with a cucumber noodle salad, coriander and sweet chili dressing", I'm not really sure that he gets this project you know.

When we came to pay, the credit card was whisked away without me getting a chance - as I thought - to include a tip so we tucked a tenner under a plate. When the manageress returned with the receipt, she turned her nose up at the folding stuff and told us that service was included, earning my eternal loyalty, respect and regard.

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