Monday, August 22, 2011

Review of Country Kitchen, Killarney, Co. Kerry

We dined here on the 21st August 2011

Ev and myself took a romantic trip to the Kingdom of Ireland (County Kerry for all our American viewers - never thought I would have the pleasure of writing that!! Thanks for visiting guys!)

We were staying in the superb Dunloe Castle hotel just outside Killarney on a SuperValue Getaway break - amazing deals which I would really recommend!

Anyway… we had settled into the hotel, seen the Gap of Dunloe and decided to drive into Killarney for some grub.

After consulting with Tripadvisor we found Chapter Forty was ranked no.1 in Killarney, which unfortunately turned out to be closed… L On our walk back to the Main Street we stumbled upon what appeared to be a bakery/deli.  There was a mountain of fresh sausage rolls and scones on the counter and a notice advertising 3 courses for €20 from the FULL Menu as opposed to the traditionally limited early bird menu.

Upon entering the premises we (unlike other patrons!) adhered to the “Please wait to be seated” sign and were greeted by the young and enthusiastic Shane, who we later discovered was the proprietor of this relatively new establishment. He asked had we brought wine, and suggested that we take advantage of the BYOB perk of the restaurant. Sheahans Off Licence 2 doors down was recommended and we availed of a 10% discount card- #WINNING!

We got ourselves a “good-value” Australian Chardonnay for €10 (€9 with the discount J) and brought it back to the restaurant to be refrigerated. BYOB is a great idea and with only €2 corkage makes eating and boozing out more affordable. Also on a “Go Team Ireland” note, it was great to see local businesses working together.

The Grub:

Having seen another table’s starters be delivered, we both instantly agreed upon the Chicken and Bacon Caesar Salad to start.

We thought the portion was generous, the dressing was anchovy-ee and there was plenty of chicken. There could have been more Parmesan but on the whole it was a delicious starter.


Matt ordered the and Muscle Tagliatelle with Tiger Prawns which was served in a creamy, garlicy, lemony sauce. It also came with fresh parsley and a slice of lemon for the citrus whores among us.
It was fresh and tasty and came loaded with 6 Large Tiger Prawns. The garlic and muscles worked really well together and the pasta was on the nicer side of al dente.

Ev ordered the Roast Chicken which was described on the menu as being “Lemon and lime glazed… and served with thyme stuffing baked potatoes and seasonal vegetables”

What actually arrived was something akin to something your granny would make you. In the words of Roy Keane, all credit to granny’s dinners, but it wasn’t really what Ev was expecting. There was a teaspoon of stuffing on the plate and the seasonal veg consisted of 5 carrot discs and a bit of broccoli and cauliflower.

The baked potatoes were replaced with bland mash which needed a good bit of butter and the chicken which was juicy lacked the citrus zesting it claimed. Oh, and there was gravy as well.. obv! Ev enjoyed her dinner as she always does in her granny’s but was a little let down when compared to Matt’s dinner and what was described on the menu.


Unlike many of our previous posts and restaurant experiences, the dessert was a genuine high point which isn’t surprising given the fact that Country Kitchen is a bakery by day.

We ordered a homemade Apple Crumble, heated with Ice Cream and a Chocolate Cake also served with ice cream. (we asked Shane to heat this as well and he obliged, even though he had never been asked to do this before) They were both delicious, the apple crumble was crunchy and lightly coated with sugar which was almost caramelised. It was sweet and warm and homely.

The chocolate cake wasn't too heavy as many chocolate desserts can be. Instead it was fresh and spongy complimented perfectly by vanilla ice cream.

Overall Impression:

There were 2 main courses and one starter that were unavailable on the Sunday night we visited. Ev thought that it would have been a nice touch to have one or two alternatives on offer, but having said this there were still plenty of choice on the menu so it didn’t bother us.

It is clearly a popular place, 10 tables were occupied in the 90 minutes we were there, a great feat to achieve as there were only 12 tables total in the restaurant.

The service was excellent during our meal, but it would have been interesting to see how they coped with a full house given how few staff were present.

Shane is an excellent host, full of wit and character who made us feel at home and among friends with our fellow diners, many of whom engaged in conversation with neighbouring tables throughout the meal.

To conclude, this was a great value dinner served in a cosy venue with a friendly atmosphere and a great host. The bill totalled €48.50 which included 2 tea’s and a portion of bread and the aforementioned corkage.

A couple of minor improvements and this place is winning awards.

**Guys if you have any suggestions of places to go or ways we can improve our blog please leave a comment below!! Thanks J**

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