At first glance, Daniel Skukalek and Lorna Halligan’s menus in Nine Arches seem straightforward: fishcake; grilled sourdough with pancetta; turkey burger; lamb shank; seared hake; rice pudding. But look closer: that lamb shank has an Espagnole sauce; the rice pudding has a cardamom shortbread; the lemongrass has a ginger, lemongrass and caper aioli; the hake has a hazelnut crumble. And then, when the dishes arrive: what a rainbow of colours! What an artistic palette of ingredients! What flair and vivacity! If it is true that we eat with our eyes, then you would be content in Nine Arches just to stare at the food. Daniel and Laura have a hungry young team working with them, and their energy just powers this simple, smart room. Mr Skukalek worked alongside Gary O’Hanlon in Longford’s cutting-edge Viewmount House for years, so he has become another key player in Longford’s food revolution. Simpler lunch menus are delivered with the same precision as the evening dishes and the vegetarian choices – thanks to some serious expertise with pickling and fermenting – are imaginative and original. Don’t miss Nine Arches.
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