Beckett and Bull is on Rathgar Avenue, down at the Harold's Cross end of things. They have been open for about one year now, and when they were getting ready to open, their eye catching exterior caught my eye on more than one occasion.
The restaurant is in a terrace of what are probably turn of the last century houses in leafy Rathgar, but the exterior is now clad in what I would describe as London Underground tiling, that distinctive and iconic rectangular tile with the bevelled edge, that always reminds me of my time in that great city.
Owner Jonathan took on a big project, expanding the building to the rear, and taking the train metaphor further, the dining room itself is reminiscent of a railway carriage; it’s long and slim, with seating down the right hand side and some larger tables on the left. At the rear is a little conservatory area, and the walls are decorated with posters from old Audrey Hepburn movies, the odd Wonder Woman graphic and some fine examples of Elvis vinyl.
Beckett and bull is open Wednesday to Saturday from 12, serving a Munch menu in the daytime and dinner from 5pm. At the weekends it's brunch-ville and they have built up a very strong following amongst the locals for their carefully sourced and well presented takes on burgers, eggs Benedict, wings and things and home made sweets.
We rocked up for dinner of a weekday evening, and were soon sitting in cosy comfort, with a graphic poster of Linda Carter in full Wonder Woman regalia to keep me company. The brunette had to amuse herself with the menu, while myself and Linda took a trip down memory lane, to a time in the Seventies when a basque wearing babe with a lasso and a tiara fought crime and saved the world.
We shared a bowl of the spicy wings, which were meaty and juicy, and packed a hot punch, and as a bowl of chicken wings they were very good. Main courses were more adventurous; a seared tuna steak, cooked medium rare for me was perfect. The tuna was meaty enough to be filling, while the side salad and a bowl of homemade fries on the side meant I had a nicely balanced meal that left me feeling replete, but not stuffed.
The brunette unusually enough went for the vegetarian option; a spicy bean burger with onion rings and fries. The burger was excellent with a good selection of beans and spices combined to form a very tasty whole, while a proper bun, really good onion rings, and more of the home made fires made this a feast she enjoyed and struggled to finish. I would love to try the spicy beans in a wrap at lunchtime, a sort of variation on a falafel.
We finished pigishly enough with two desserts; a chilli chocolate fondant which was sticky and gooey, with a chilli hit to make it more interesting, while an apple crumble with vanilla custard was its antithesis, and these and good coffee and a pot of tea finished off a good meal.
Beckett and Bull have done a very good job of re imagining a neighbourhood restaurant and has already become a popular spot, with the weekends being particularly busy. Good food, funky decor and a great selection of Irish and American craft beers make it a keeper.