The Farm Restaurant on Leeson Street is three years old now, and their organic and seasonal menus continue to attract diners. After a fortnight travelling in parts of the world that don't have access to the fantastic produce we have in Ireland, dinner in a restaurant that prides itself on its ingredients was the perfect way to kick off the reviewing year of 2015.
This fine building has been completely restored and is now decorated in a pleasing shade of green - all very Farrow and Ball - with banquette seating running down one wall in the same shade, while the chairs are in a cream suede or leather, and they complement the colour scheme beautifully. Simple dark wood tables and some exposed brickwork complete the look downstairs, while the upstairs level is a much more romantic setting, with pretty curtains on the windows and an intimate feel.
The menu hasn’t strayed terribly from the origins, it’s still all about locally sourced and where possible organic ingredients. There is a lunch special that changes daily for under a tenner, and it could be a burger or pan fried pork chop with mash. In the evening there is an early bird value menu offering two courses for €22.95, a set three course dinner menu, including tea of coffee for €33.95 and the A la carte.
The A la Carte offers a virtually fat free Asian salad, an Irish Charcuterie with air dried meats from Connemara and cheese from the Little Milk Company. Other choices include Irish organic turf smoked salmon from the Haven Smokehouse in Donegal or the Farm seafood basket with Dublin Bay prawns, smoked salmon and crabmeat in a filo basket.
Main courses tempt with a steak from Kettles in Fermanagh, Asian style chilli seared prawns, a confit duck leg on red cabbage or free range pork fillet, while the are four vegetarian choices including a vegetarian burger and polenta cakes with spiced parsnip, chickpeas and peanuts.
Dinner with adman Peter Mansfield saw us share a selection of charcuterie and cheese; beautifully cured slice beef, lamb and salami from Connemara was paired with delicious Blue Bells Falls goats cheese, fragrant Cashel blue and marbled cheddar, all served with fresh toasted bread and red onion marmalade.
We next had two starters; the impossibly tasty and crunchy Asian salad had a hit of chilli that warmed it up, even on a cold January evening, while Peter loved his filo fish parcel. Main courses brought us the best bit of salmon ever, according to the adman, and a very nice steak with roasted potatoes and some crunchy veg on the side.
What with the pre starter, we were defeated and I finished with some good coffee, as Peter finished his third glass of New Zealand Sauv Blanc.
The Farm serves very carefully sourced Irish food that is cooked to perfection. Service under the watch of manager Clive was great and we ambled off to happy temporary tent dwellers. Check out the Farm soon.