Sunday, May 20, 2012

Dinner at Bite, Dublin 2

I knew Bite in it's previous incarnation as Georges Bistro and it was small and cosy with really great staff.  Bite is different : the dynamic has changed and it seems a lot more rabbit-warren like in layout.  I wasn't too impressed by being taken on a magical mystery tour via what seemed like the kitchen & stores entrance to our reserved table.  Our table for three was perched in a corner right inside the door so we were privy to all the comings and goings in the restaurant.

Green Cod with Rocket & Pickled Cucumber

Bite style themselves as "Hip, not Hipster" but I don't think this is correct.  The staff are definitely of the uber-cool hipster variety while the crowd is a mix of Crackbird types and well dressed post-work people (you can guess amongst yourselves where we fitted in...).  The owner was very visible, wandering up and down the restaurant like a lost soul, but failing to ask the customers how they were getting on and choosing to sit with his friends instead for a little chat.   More customer care and less buddy buddy would go a long way here

We started proceedings with a bowl of buttery salty popcorn which Smutcho had made serious inroads into before myself and Sprinty arrived a few minutes later. It was very good indeed and another bowl would have been very much welcomed.

The Menu

By sheer coincidence, we all ordered the green cod, so no cross-sharing of food on this occasion, although we did negotiate the sides to include all three varieties of chips : skinny (95c), Truffle & Parmesan and Duck Fat (€3.95 each).  I had eaten Truffle & Parmesan at The Bar+Grill in Belfast the weekend before, so I was expecting great things from Bite.  They can relax, the chips were excellent if a little on the fat side.  When we mentioned this to our server, she (belatedly) told us we could have them as skinny fries if we liked.

Aioli, Brandy BBQ & Tart Tartare Sauces

Our cod was accompanied by rocket, a lemon wedge, a teeny pot of pickled cucumber a la The Tannery (close, but not quite...) and a choice of one of the sauces.  My aioli was sufficiently garlicky to ensure no vampires approached me on the way home.  Smutcho & Sprinty were very taken with their own and forgot to share.  It's ok, I got in first with some skinny chips to sample them.  The cod in a vodka & beer batter was very good indeed.  The batter was light and crisp, with no soggy hidden bits and the fish was perfectly cooked.

With a glass of wine each, our bill came to €61 which was pretty reasonable value for an after-work dinner. 

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