Dublin’s oldest wine venue plays host to Ely Bar & Grill, a brasserie-style haunt set in the restored vaults of the docklands. Tucked underground in a maze of vaulted rooms lies the main dining room, a dimly-lit space with gothic undertones, brightened up by a few red and white patterned seats and abstract art. Bare brick walls and stone archways are filled with leather banquettes and wooden barrel centrepieces – a nod to the cellar’s whiskey roots.
Ely Bar & Grill serves up pared-down food and cult favourites, spanning from pies to chicken and bacon club sandwiches, buttermilk fried chicken burgers, and soup with Guinness bread. The dinner menu offers more variety, with a grill section dedicated to steaks with hand-cut chips, caramelised onion and an array of sauces, while a ‘Craggy Island’ lamb rack pays tribute to Father Ted. Keen to demonstrate Ireland’s rich produce, the restaurant’s beef and pork are sourced from the family’s organic farm in Co. Clare while seasonal fish is ethically sourced from Irish shores. Ely Bar & Grill serves a hearty brunch on weekends – expect organic Irish chicken wings, scrambled eggs with black truffle, and warm chocolate brownies.
A departure from basic kids menus, Ely Bar & Grill serves up low-salt half-portions of its classic dishes alongside children’s staples – think fish & chips and a more adventurous beef cheek croquettes with mushy peas. The knickerbocker glory and caramel doughnuts are sure to ramp up their hyper behaviour – you’ve been warned.
The wine list is lengthy – as to be expected – listing labels by grape variety rather than origin, a welcome change from the usual layout. Ely Bar & Grill continues the legacy thrust upon it, with its sommelier wine tastings, family-friendly meals and well-maintained historic interiors.