It's always nice to have a seafood restaurant actually located near, you know, the sea! Talk about a novel concept but seafood always seems nicer when it's eaten within a hop, skip and jump of the sea. New restaurant Fishbone is located on Dublin's lengthy, sea-hugging Clontarf Road, just opposite the Dollymount Wooden Bridge. While sitting inside, something immediately reminded me of the long-established Bay restaurant, so I wasn't at all surprised to learn that Fishbone comes from the same proprietors.
Fishbone is set back a little bit from the road, with a bright yellow exterior that immediately catches the eye. There's outdoor seating for those lovely sunny days while inside, it's bright and light, with a lovely modern atmosphere, tempered with a slight Moroccan feel. The chalkboard menu is wonderfully attractive, and packed full of daily specials and tempting dishes. As you look out the front window, another chalkboard menu entices you with the list of house cocktails.
|The blackboard menu at Fishbone|
The menu is immediately inviting with interesting takes on many classic dishes and fishy favourites. We ordered reasonably quickly, but then the wait commenced. After a while, a waitress came over and informed us that the oyster delivery had not arrived, but they could do us a half portion for half price. No issues from us, but the wait recommenced. Eventually the starters arrived (at this stage I had finished one glass of the very delicious Weingut H Boch Riesling). Lambay crab cannelloni (€12) was light and tasty, with slices of sweet melon taking the place of the traditional pasta tubes, and enriched with the crunch of tasted hazelnuts. My smaller portion of Oysters Rockefeller (normally €18 for 6) had a lovely crisp topping, with sweet, plump and oh so creamy oysters underneath.
|Lambay crab cannelloni with melon and hazelnuts|
Starters cleared away, the waiting game resumed, but thankfully for not as long. Still though, my second glass of Riesling was disappearing fast. His portion of lemon sole (€15) came perfectly grilled, coated in a chimichurri sauce. With one side included, this was superb value for money, as well as being a light and tasty lunch. My Howth lobster roll was underwhelming in the flavour department and at €16, it felt just a little...small. Even a large side portion of fries didn't deter that sensation.
|Lemon sole grilled with chimichurri|
|Howth lobster roll with fries|
Overall, despite the delays, I really liked Fishbone. They have a creative take on seafood, with many dishes that I want to return to try. The interior is equally vibrant and the whole restaurant just sings with confidence and freshness. It's clear that someone has invested a lot of time and effort into Fishbone. A great new "plaice"!
Fishbone, 324 Clontarf Road, Dublin 3
Tel: +353 (0)1 536 9066