This new-fangled internet thingy has been abuzz with talk of Keshk, a Middle Eastern restaurant for the cash-conscious on the wild plains of Upper Leeson Street. People like it, because you can bring your own wine and they don’t charge corkage.
I went there for my birthday last week. I was an insignificant age so an inexpensive dinner was a good match. We brought along a bottle of red I got for Christmas and picked up a second in Louis Albrouze, the wine shop next door.
First thing you notice about Keshk is how small it is. They’ve done a good job of making it intimate without being claustrophic, although our table for two seemed like the tightest squeeze in the place.
It didn’t spoil our enjoyment. I had the very good hummus (€4.95): perfectly consistent and not dominated by one flavour. It came with plenty of bread to mop it up. SnackBox went for the chicken wings (€6.95). This is a dish that’s hard to get right and we both felt Keshk didn’t quite succeed here; they were okay, but the coating tasted as though it had been created by an Irish mammy imagining what a “Middle Eastern” marinade would taste like.
The Chilli Meshwe, a charcoal grilled lamb fillet with mixed vegetables and topped with a mild chilli sauce (€15.95), was really good: lots of tender lamb, lots of sauce, and a sweet, mild, spicy sauce. My falafel plate (€12.95) was substantial and delicious, strong and spicy and delicate as falafel should be, although a wee bit more sauce wouldn’t have gone astray. Each main comes with a side, so we shared rice and potatoes.
For under €50 and with subtle, friendly, and competent service, Keshk is a gem. The place was packed but despite arriving at 7.15pm we never felt rushed. We left stuffed without feeling sick. Next time, I’ll skip the huge starter and have a great meal for two for under €30. Definitely one of the best cheap eats around.
- Keshk, 129 Upper Leeson Street (the Donnybrook end). Tel: 01 6689793