Happy New Year everyone! This week I'm bringing you all three Best of 2012 posts; my favourites from last year, ranging from food, fashion, beauty, film and more! 2012 was quite the year, so I think it's only fair I show it some love. Food is one of my biggest loves in life, it makes me incredibly happy and it's safe to say, I know my stuff when it comes to eating in Dublin! None of the places mentioned below are extremely expensive, and there should be something there for everyone. Whether you like American diner-style grub, sushi or pancakes - you'll find something that tickles your fancy..
Best Overall Restaurant - Yamamori (Lower Ormond Quay, Dublin 1)
I discovered Yamamori early last year, whilst on the hunt for a new sushi hub. I fell head over heels for the place and their food, immediately. With affordable prices, a vast range of food choices (everything from chicken, to fish, to tofu) and friendly staff - what's not to love? My friends and I usually order the same thing when we go out to eat, it's unadventurous but we tend to stick to our faves. I order Salmon Noramaki (around €8), a bowl of brown rice (€2), a bowl of seaweed (50c) and curry sauce (€1). For just over a tenner, you're stuffed to the gills and have eaten a nice variety of healthy food. The complimentary green tea makes a visit to Yamamori even better, along with the little mints you receive after your meal. It's the little things!
The restaurant itself is beautiful; a visible open kitchen, Japanese-style decorated, buzzing atmosphere and lovely bathrooms. I'd highly recommend paying Yamamori a visit, if you haven't gone yet. The two Yamamori's on George's Street are also just as nice, but the one on the Quays is my personal favourite. If you like Yo! Sushi and Wagamamas, I think you'll definitely like the food here. It's a million times better and more affordable!
Best Fast Food Restaurant - Eddie Rockets
Myself and the girls have been going to Eddie Rockets since we started secondary school, and it'll stand by us as one of our all-time favourites in Dublin. Eddie Rockets is an American-style retro diner, scattered all over Dublin City Centre and its suburbs. It's known for being quite expensive, but if you know what to order, you'll end up spending the same amount as if you went to Maccy D's, or wherever. My favourite bits to get are the Sweet Potato Fries (around 4.50) or Cheesy Fries (around €4), with a simple tumbler of Coke (Saved by the Bell style)! Their Oreo Malts are quite delicious also, but I'd recommend sharing one with a friend as they're quite filling. The atmosphere is always great, as is the music - 50s and 60s rock and roll, with a bit of 80s thrown in here and there! My favourite Eddie Rockets branches are on Dame Street and in Stillorgan Village.
Special Mentions - Browne's, Jamie's Italian & The Pepper Pot
Three other restaurants that deserve a special mention are all completely different from each other, but all worth paying a visit to and trying. Browne's is a quaint French-style cafe and deli located in Sandymount Village. It's always busy, and has a fantastic atmosphere with brilliant staff. Their Pancakes with Fresh Cream & Jam are a treat to have on any Sunday morning, whilst reading a complimentary paper!
Jamie's Italian in Dundrum Town Centre impressed me quite a bit when I visited a few weeks back; Italian is my favourite type of food, and I was pleasantly surprised about how affordable the food is. You can opt to purchase smaller portions for a cheaper price, which works out better in the end if you want to try a few side dishes and appetisers. The Polenta Chips are absolutely gorgeous, and a definite try if you're paying a visit anytime soon.
My favourite place to have a cup of tea and a sweet snack in town is The Pepper Pot cafe, located in Powerscourt Townhouse Centre. It's a gorgeous place to eat and chat with friends, with extremely friendly and helpful staff and a great atmosphere. Their Scrambled Eggs & Mushrooms are to die for, as are all of the fresh pastries and cakes they make daily, every morning. Their kitsch set-up and dainty china had me at hello, and I pay the cafe a visit at least once every two weeks!
What are your favourite restaurants in Dublin?