My friend R had been to La Mere Zou to try out their early bird menu before and gave a glowing report of the value to be had. We were both heading to a wine tasting event in Ely IFSC so decided to call into La Mere Zou for a quick bite before hand.
It’s a basement restaurant on Stephens Green and the early bird runs Monday to Saturday from 5.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. It’s fantastic value at 3 courses for €25. It’s a cosy space in the style of a French bistro and clearly very popular as it filled up quickly.
We were greeted warmly by Gosia and shown to a great table with plenty of space. Usually if I know in advance where I’m going to eat I have a look at the menu online. On arrival the very friendly French waitress (from Paris) pointed us to the blackboard above our heads which had a list of additional dishes which were on offer. Some had a small surcharge to be included in the early bird offer. All very reasonable I have to say.
I opted for the watercress and bacon soup. Quite a large bowl arrived and it was rich and creamy and tasty. After a few spoonfuls I realised there wasn’t a hint of bacon off it. I wasn’t sure if it was due to my tastebuds being dulled by the cocktails I had before dinner or not. I did mention it to the waitress who promptly relayed it back to the kitchen. There was an error with the order and the bacon was missing.
They could not have been more apologetic for the mishap and I had eaten so much at that point there was no need to replace it. In lieu of a replacement two glasses of Prosecco appeared on the table. I really couldn’t have asked them to handle it any better. It was a minor blip and who on earth would choose bacon over Prosecco anyway.
R had the chicken liver parfait. Beautifully presented and quite an ample size. Served with sourdough bread on the side. I’ve never liked chicken liver I have to say but R ate it all, including a second helping of sourdough which was quickly made available when asked.
For main course I went with roasted chicken supreme which was served with pearl barley and vegetable broth. Tender moist chicken and plenty of it. The vegetable broth was warming and flavorsome A very Autumn/Winter dish.
R had the slow cooked venison shank with honey roasted root vegetables, pomme purée and red wine sauce. I really wish my picture was better because the dish was gorgeous to look at and even better to taste. The venison was so tender and the red wine sauce thick and rich. Out of the two mains this one was the clear winner and I’ll be having it when I return.
Desserts were next and I opted for warm carrot cake, orange curd, and ginger bread ice cream with walnuts. I love carrot cake and this didn’t disappoint. Moist enough with a slightly crisp top. I would have liked a bit more ice cream with it though.
R had the classic crème brûlée served with a sugar snap tuile. Crisp caramel top with creamy vanilla custard. I would expect it to be hard for a French restaurant to get it wrong. They didn’t I’m happy to report.
La Mere Zou has plenty to offer. It’s a great location. It’s great value. The staff are friendly and welcoming and they change their menu to suit what’s available seasonally. I’d be happy to return.22 St. Stephens Green. Ph: 00 353 1 661 6669 Email: info@Lamerezou.Ie