The hotly anticipated The Ivy Dublin, hosted a preview on Monday with faces from the world of food, influence, celebrity, fashion and business flocking to the first Irish outpost of the famous London restaurant, a nice snapshot of the clientele that will no doubt keep them busy. They sipped on Perrier-Jouët and bopped along to DJ Jez Pereira, flown in from London for the occasion.
So what’s it like?
Firstly the pictures don’t do the decor justice at all, glancing online I thought it was going to be the obvious decor du jour, all velvet chairs and muted tones but muted it certainly is not. From The Ivy signature harlequin stained glass wall on arrival, it’s floor to ceiling brilliant colours, prints, designs and art, all clashing and clashing well, and that is no mean feat.
Banquette seats line the walls and bright bunches of Appassionata flowers are everywhere. The bustling oval bar is built up for busy service, with hundreds of pristinely polished glasses hanging above and an abundance of billowing ivy and a centerpiece bejeweled with champagne and picture-perfect bottles. The plush bar stools surrounding it will no doubt be some of the most in demand for cocktail sipping from an Irish focused cocktail menu featuring Cork Dry Sling, The Leopold Bloom and Pot Still Smash.
Venture down the art clad staircase to find The Jonathan Swift Room, a private dining area that is a cacophony of botanical design and plush palm print chairs to seat 35 people. This room must be booked out in full and will no doubt host many a product and media launch over the next while. Also downstairs is what have to be the most divine toilets in town. Covered in sumptuous floral print wallpaper, there are opulent makeup stations with velvet stools and long mirrors, hooks for bags and gold hand driers. An Instagrammer’s dream (and there were many photo shoots happening here last night).
A charming front of house team with Jamie Belton at the helm, makes for smart and smiling service, which will be needed for the busy days ahead (they are said to have taken 10,000 bookings already). And what of the food? So far I’ve only tried the canapes but the sirloin skewers with truffle mayonnaise and lobster cocktail cornets with caviar were both excellent, hopefully a taste of what’s to come with an extensive all day menu packed with bistro classics eggs, steak, salads, sandwiches and featuring some of The Ivy signature dishes along with afternoon tea and weekend brunch.
While it may become the spot for destination dining I’ve no doubt, having tried some of the London outposts this will be the place to head to for decadent get-togethers, lazy afternoons, weekend brunching, cocktails and everything in between. A vibrant, buzzing addition to the Dublin restaurant scene that can cater to pretty much any occasion.