When opportunity knocks, the capable answer the call, and so when the previous operators of the well-known Odessa Restaurant foundered, it was restaurateur and chef Temple Garner – along with chef Eamonn Connors and FOH Anthony Remedy – who were able to relaunch the restaurant as Taco Taco.
Garner has a storied past and is well known in Dublin where he previously ran the kitchens in The Mermaid Café, Town Bar and Grill, and Dillinger’s before opening his own restaurant, San Lorenzo’s, on South Great Georges Street.
Judging by the crowd on a recent Tuesday night visit, San Lorenzo's must be one of the busiest restaurants in the city.
Taco Taco is open seven days a week for dinner and weekend brunch is a speciality. I’ve been for both and feel that brunch is when the kitchen shines at its brightest. Lobster tacos; shrimp popcorn tacos; poutine fries; coca cola pulled pork- these dishes are like the proverbial kiss of life to those who might have overindulged the night before. But this is not just food for the cure: many of these dishes have never appeared on Dublin menus before and that’s what delighted me about this place. Dishes like chicken parmesan show a strong New York influence which travelled across the road from San Lorenzo’s whilst Jamaican jerk chicken tacos deliver a taste of Antigua to Dublin diners.
Drinks are an important part of Taco Taco with a strong focus on cocktails and wines by the glass but beer choices could do with some more depth and smarter pricing. We have some outstanding beers being produced on our island so let's showcase them.
Taco Taco is an exciting addition to the Dublin casual dining scene and, even if somehow you don’t like it, you will remember it. It’s bustling and noisy, it’s assured, it's happy with itself. It began life as a pop-up but, after several months of successful trading, the entire building has been secured and plans are afoot for another higher end restaurant upstairs.
Taco Taco, 14 Dame Court, Dublin T 083 449 9584 www.tacotacodublin.com