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Luna. Review by William Barry

All the best places to eat, shop and stay in Ireland. A local guide to local places.

William Barry reckons John Farrell's newest Dublin venture, Luna, is his best yet.

Luna has hit the ground running faster than Usain Bolt's cat.
I suspect that this restaurant has been a burning ambition for restaurateur John Farrell for a long time. His other eateries (Dillinger’s, Super Miss Sue, Butchers Grill and 777) are all casual, and whilst each one has its own individual identity and all serve excellent food, I have a hunch that Farrell has always wanted a restaurant where movie stars and musicians would come to eat, drink and play.
And that’s exactly what Luna is shaping up to be. It hums with an old school pizazz, and the waiters wear Louis Copeland Tuxedos imparting a dash of gangster glamour to the plush leather booths in this darkened basement dining room.
The pricing of the menu is ambiguous – it’s not a place if you’re watching the pennies – but the food is stellar. There is charcuterie being sliced in one corner and I got especially intrigued when I saw Lardo toast on the menu, these thin slices of cured melty pork fat on crunchy buttery sourdough toast press all the buttons (the only other place I know to do Lardo toast is the secretive Terra Madre of Batchelor’s Walk).
Other superb dishes included hanger steak, veal chops and pork rack, and a belter of broccoli and crab tortellini. Desserts pass up and down wheeled on a trolley with an unremarkable tiramisu the only letdown of the night.
Luna has been a long time being put together but it delivers the goods where it matters. Farrell has named the restaurant after his two year old daughter, also Luna, which adds a very personal dimension. It’s only been open for a few months now, but it feels like it’s been there forever. This is partly due to the excellent stewardship of a crack team front and back of house, with the front of house led by Declan Maxwell, and a more consummate professional you would struggle to find, with a track record in great restaurants such as Chapter One, Chez Nico and La Stampa. The kitchen team, led by Karl Whelan and Hugh Higgins, are firing out some of most interesting food Dublin has seen for years.

2/3 Drury Street Car Park,
Dublin 2.
Tel: (087) 776-4230/(01) 679-9009

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