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Query: Ultra-cheap places in Dublin that don’t stink?

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We got an interesting query from Ciaran, a reader who’s about to move from London back to Dublin and is looking for tips for ultra-cheap eats:

I have to return to Dublin soon…I’ve been in London. So hopefully I’ll get a job and I presume it will be in the city centre area. Can you recommend ultra cheap places to go that ain’t too crap? I remember the Moore Street Mall and a Korean place behind the Italian quarter, but that’s about it. I need it to be all you can eat or large portions for €8 or so, paper plates, plastic chairs etc – I’m not a fussy eater and surprisingly am a complete foodie, but needs must –  you get my drift…

Ciaran didn’t specify whether he’s looking for lunch or dinner spots, but we have a few tips that will work for both:

  • The ground floor deli counter at Fallon & Byrne is pretty much spot on for this – main courses are all around €8 and the quality is great. The ground floor is brightly lit and has those slightly uncomfortable high chairs, but you have the option of taking your plate downstairs to their lovely cosy wine cellar and adding a glass of wine.
  • Pho Viet, a Vietnamese restaurant on Parnell St. You can have a fantastic dinner there for under €10.
  • Madina on Mary St, for authentic and delicious Indian food.
  • Delhi o Deli on Moore St, also Indian, you can get fed there for about €5. It’s a canteen style place; the food is basic but spicy, varied and tasty.
  • I’ve always had a soft spot for Zaytoon, a Persian kebab place on Parliament St, with a sister restaurant on Camden St. Kebabs are associated with drunkenness, but Zaytoon’s are delicious even when you’re stone cold sober.   You can get lovely grilled chicken, vegetables or fish and hence can avoid the mystery meat. They also bake their own very good flatbread.

So there’s a few spots that sprang to mind for me.  Where would you send someone who doesn’t mind plastic forks but wants decent eats?

13 Comments

  1. I’d suggest he has a browse through eatforafiver.com and takes his pick!

  2. Madina is great — five Euro for a great Chicken biriyani.

    And Passion4Food on Clanbrassil Street.

  3. +1 for eatforafiver.com also keep an eye on dealpage.ie for offers! Maybe splash out an extra €2 for green19 if you can!!bobos also have good offers

  4. Zaytoon does a cracking lunch special. Slightly smaller kebab, chicken, lamb etc, take your pick. Portion of chips and a drink for €6. Solid feed and value for money. Lot better than your average chicken fillet roll and a coke special.

  5. I’d recommend the Cedar Tree. It’s a Lebanese place that does lunch for €10. You get a starter, main and drink and the portions are very big

  6. Great , thanks everybody for the suggestions, I will probably go to them all.

  7. While I enjoy Ciaran’s query (and I second the Madina suggestion, and add Govinda’s of which I am still a fan), I do wonder: WHY exactly does it need to be all you can eat or big servings? Can’t you just survive on a sandwich like everyone else? Are you training for a strongman competition / attempting to put on record amounts of weight?

  8. The Yacht pub on the Clontarf Road has a carvery lunch for 12.50 Euro but it also serves generous half portions for 7.50 which is great value. There is a wide choice and it is always busy which is a good sign.

  9. Good suggestions, especially the Korean supermarket. I’d add the Hilan on Capel Street. Although its not in the City Centre, the Bulgarian restaurant on the Sundrive road across from the Superquinn, named Bulgari, is great. We visited out of curiosity and found fine Bulgarian pop, very friendly hosts and delicious grilled food. We had a huge four cheese salad (next time I’ll get the watermelon salad the Bulgarians were having), their delicious grilled meatballs and mashed potatoes and a large skewer of mixed meats all of which were delicious and fed a family of four. All this with a very generous glass of wine for 36 euro. During the week they do a 2 course meal for two with wine for 25 euro!

  10. I am surprised Moore Street Mall is not mentioned. Very authentic mostly buffet style food and also a lot of different variety. From India/Pakistani to Mauritius, African, Bosnian, Polish, Turkish etc.

  11. Rosemary, why on earth do you care about someone else’s portion size? Are you on some kind of mad diet that’s making you cranky? :D

  12. Maybe Ciaran needs large portions because he can only afford to eat once a day. He doesn’t have a job, after all. Good luck to him and thanks to all for the great suggestions!

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