Out with the new and in with the old. The latest addition to the vibrant dining scene in the bustling town of Malahide is Old Street. A modern neighbourhood restaurant housed in what was once an aging cottage. Despite being only open a matter of weeks it has the tongues, both local and further afield wagging. Living nearby in Skerries we decided on a Saturday evening to hop on the train and try out the early evening menu. It’s keenly priced at €24 for two courses and €29 for three. You can take advantage of it Wednesday to Saturday between 12-3 p.m. and 5-6.30 p.m. It’s a choice of three starters, three mains, two desserts and a selection of sides.
The welcome was warm with general manager Denise McBrien on hand to welcome diners. On arrival we grabbed a couple of seats at the bar and enjoyed a couple of gin and tonics. They have everything from Tanqueray €6 to Bombay €5.5 and Berthas Revenge €8 on the list.
Mark and Adriana Fitzpatrick have led an impressive restoration of the two old buildings which now house Old Street. Think exposed brickwork, wooden beams, clean lines, classic furniture and attention to detail and you have an idea of what to expect.
As mentioned Old Street are conscientious about details. The napkins are embroidered by Enrich and Endure and the gorgeous butter paddle is made by Hewn. On the topic of butter I would like to congratulate Old Street on serving butter which you can actually spread easily. A particular bugbear of mine is ridiculously hard butter with fresh bread. They are simply not a good match. Thank you Old Street for thinking of the little things.
Now on to the food. I slathered some of that aforementioned butter across thick slabs of crusty bread while waiting on our starters to arrive. I went with the cured sea trout served with avocado, cucumber and horseradish. There’s no denying that it looks superb on the plate. They are certainly well versed in presentation skills. Thankfully it was not all fur coat and no knickers. Three fine servings of sea trout were more than enough to kick off the meal. I would have liked a touch more of the avocado however. Overall a simple and tasty dish.
The second starter was a chicken liver parfait served with a pear and raisin chutney with sourdough toast on the side. I’ve never been a fan of chicken liver parfait and remain steadfast in that vocation. Henry however is quite the fan and gave it a very positive yes. It was more a lightly whipped version and I’m told the chutney was incredible. He would have liked an extra slice of sourdough toast and I’ve no doubt had he asked, it would have promptly appeared.
I went with the chicken, polenta, black garlic gel and sprouting broccoli with almonds. The polenta was creamy, the chicken cooked perfectly, remaining moist and flavoursome and the broccoli enough bite to add texture to the dish. You probably wont find black garlic in your local supermarket and it can be used for everything from a sandwich spread to a purée to making ice-cream. In this dish it was quite subtle and overall I have to say it was excellent. There wasn’t a single morsel left on my plate.
The other main was a herb gnocchi served with mushroom caramel, asparagus, broccoli and aged Parmesan. Another delicious dish and again presented beautifully. There is little to flaw in such a simple dish. Well made, good flavours and a generous serving.
For sides we went with some homemade fries €4 and roast carrots with harissa €4. The homemade fries probably made the least impact in terms of the dishes served. They were a little on the limp side if I’m honest. The roast carrots with harissa however were a thing of beauty. A simple dish of carrots made sing with the addition of the heat from harissa. We practically wielded fork swords battling to secure the last piece. Simply delicious.
We were pressed for time due to heading to another engagement so didn’t get to enjoy the dessert menu. I did however have my eye on the coconut and white chocolate Mille Feuille with white chocolate rocks and coconut sorbet. I might start with that on my return visit.
Overall Old Street is a stylish and exciting addition to Malahide. The staff and service are faultless. A special mention to Luke who looked after us throughout the meal. The various rooms within the restaurant are comfortable and will cater to all size of groups. While some might see the early evening menu limited with only a choice of three starters and mains, it is very kind to the pocket in my opinion.
Adding on a bottle of French 2015 Sauvignon Viognier €26.5, the two sides (€4 each) and both having the two course early evening option our bill came to about €95 (including tip). Given that for an extra €10 we could have both had dessert I would call it a dining success. Without hesitation I would recommend Old Street and will be returning in the very near future.