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Tower Bistro, Martello Bar, Restaurant and Hotel, Bray

Martello bray

47 Strand Road
Bray, Co. Wicklow.

+353 (0)1 286 8000

Hours: Lunch and Dinner seven days.

Review

The Tower Bistro is in the crazily busy Martello Bar, Restaurant and Hotel on Bray seafront. I have been moaning for a while that the south side of Dublin has no equivalent for Howth; somewhere where hundreds, or thousands, walk on a Sunday and pack out local restaurants. I was wrong, they're all in Bray.

Martello is a huge premises combining an outdoor terrace, bar, hotel, nightclub and restaurant. It is packed on a cold October Sunday, but outside heaters mean the patrons are toasty. Inside sports are on the TV’s in the bar, and upstairs another outdoor terrace overlooks the sea. Inside is the Tower Bistro. Families, friends and couples occupy the tables, and the staff is kept very busy, but do so very efficiently and with great politeness and good cheer.

The menu is classic bistro fare, with starters including goat’s cheese with beetroot, prawns and scallops on a bed of rocket, seafood chowder, crispy calamari and classic mussel’s mariners. Main courses continue with roast lamb shank on basil mash, freshly battered fish and homemade chips, pan roasted cod, a special of lemon sole and a choice of three or four steaks with all the trimmings.

First up were Tiger prawns in garlic chilli with dippy bread which were great. This is a lovely dish I regularly cook at home, and lots or garlic and chilli make it a winner. The main course of roasted lamb shank fell off the bone, and the accompanying veg was still crisp and fresh, with the cauliflower cheese going particularly well with the thick and rich gravy, while a bed of basil mash was creamy and delicious.

I fancied a dessert but then the children's menu caught my eye, for on it was jelly and ice cream. Well ask and you shall receive, and they were happy to let me eat from the Children’s side and I got a real feel good favourite. Strawberry jelly and ice cream was a little sweet bauble to finish a very nice Sunday lunch.

Service throughout was excellent and the Tower is a well run spot serving very nice food to the masses, in the nicest possible way.

Good spot to stop after or before walking the prom.

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