- a blog about food and value

Query: An accidental Valentine’s dinner?


Our reader Josephine got in touch to ask about finding an early bird deal for Valentine’s Day:

Hubby & I have tickets to see The Classic Beatles in The Tivoli Theatre Francis Street on Feb 14th. When I booked the tickets I didn’t reallise what day it was.

I think I need to book a table somewhere in order to be sure that we will get something to eat before the show.

Can anyone recommend a good restaurant within walking distance of the theatre, preferably one with an early bird menu.

I feel your pain Josephine! Even the loved-up don’t necessarily want to do the whole big elaborate Valentine’s dinner out thing. Unfortunately enough people do, that I think it’s unlikely that they’ll find an early bird. Valentine’s Day is one of the biggest days of the year for restaurants, and most will have a more expensive special menu on. But there’s a few spots around Parliament St, Cow’s Lane and Christchurch that might feed a couple of concert-goers without outrageously overcharging them:

  • The Larder on Parliament St is lovely and very good value, and they’re probably the most likely to have an early bird on as they have a  number of excellent deals
  • There’s a nice, cosy little Italian place called La Dolce Vita on Cow’s Lane. I’ve had a very good lunch there and their evening menu looks reasonable
  • If you don’t mind keeping it simple, Arthur’s pub on Thomas St does decent basic comfort food and is a lovely bar
  • The Bull and Castle on Lord Edward St does food, it’s nothing special though so I’d only recommend it if you’re stuck. It’s not exactly a romantic spot so is unlikely to be booked out by Valentine’s diners!

Anyone else have any suggestions for a cheap eat within walking distance of the Tivoli?


  1. Chez Max at the gates of Dublin Castle offer an Early Bird – it would be worth asking if it will be available on the dreaded Feb 14th

  2. Myself and the hubbie ate in a place called “Just off Francis” a few months back, it’s on Thomas Street, just off Francis street. Nice simple but tasty food and constantly changing specials. Well worth a try.

  3. I second the “Just off Francis” recommendation. Lovely little place!

  4. Unfortunately Just Off Francis closed down a few months ago; a shame, i had lunch there a couple of times and liked the food and the surroundings.

    Chez Max is a great spot, I’d say it’ll be busy on the 14th though – it’s pretty cosy & romantic

  5. We went to see Get Back on Wednesday night, it was BRILLIANT. Anyway, we just nipped in to Crackbird at 6 for a quick bite to eat beforehand, ’twas lovely and the new location on Dame Street is only about a 6-7 minute walk from the Tivoli.