31 March 2009

Your Place or Mao?

Our first night in Dublin, we all went to Cassidy’s Bar for a drink. I was scheduled to meet my friend Mark’s friends Kate & Collum for dinner but didn’t have a firm time and place so I went along to Cassidy’s as well. My first drink in Ireland: a glass of Guinness. I was severely teased for drinking a glass and not a pint, but I held my ground. I didn’t know what the evening had in store and wanted to pace myself. Plus I hadn’t really eaten anything at all since the Aer Lingus dinner the night before.

While at Cassidy’s, Kate texted me to meet them at the Fitzwilliam at 7:30pm. I took my leave of the group, but Suzanne decided to stay and see what the evening plans turned out to be.

It was only a short walk to the Fitzwilliam which is a very nice modern hotel on St. Stephen’s Green near the top of Grafton St. We met in the lobby (after a bit of kerfuffle) and decided to try one or another of two Asian places close by just off Grafton St. The first had a line at the door so we move on to the second.

Mao – an Asian fusion bistro – is a great place to eat in Dublin or Dun Laoghaire. I know it’s in at least those two places and maybe more. We started with cocktails and appetizers. Collum had an Erdinger (non-alcoholic beer) and Kate & I had gin & tonics. Collum & I had the Honey Sesame Prawns and Kate had the Chili Squid. Kate originally offered us to try her squid but we never got the chance as she wolfed them down declaring them DELICIOUS. The prawns were sweet and crunchy on a bed of rocket with cilantro lime dressing for a sweet/spicy mix.

For mains, Collum had water and Kate & I split a bottle of Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon. It was smooth and wonderful. Collum had the Tempura Sole, I had the Mango Chili Duck, and Kate had the Chili-Lime Tiger Prawns. We had a choice of noodles or rice. I chose the rice and the others the noodles. Again, we all polished off every bit of food & drink declaring everything very tasty.

The surprise was the dessert menu. They had Cheesecake, Ice cream & Sorbet. We had one of each. Not what I might expect with Asian food, but delicious.

After our dinner, they drove me back to my hotel. Some of the gang were still in the lobby, but it had been a long day and it was time for bed.

Busy day tomorrow!!

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