Where we live in Dublin we’re lucky enough to have an abundance of wonderful restaurants right on our doorstep. A few months ago an Indian restaurant called Doolally established themselves on South Richmond Street so with a soft spot for Indian food I thought it was high time to check this place out. Friday night myself and my buddy Mairead were both very keen to try this place that’s exactly what we did. First impressions of Doolally – I fell in love with the decor and it was no surprise to hear that Press Up were the folks behind creating yet another stunning restaurant interior.
As you enter into a relatively dark space you are transported to a very classy but casual, warm and inviting space with fabulous lighting, potted plants and tufts of ferns peeking out from behind industrial style lighting, stunning leather couches, gallery walls with images of India. Taking centre stage is a big beautiful bar with happy chatty bar staff and this spot is the perfect place to kick off a Friday evening. The restaurant is a pretty large space but with lots of individual areas that have been very carefully designed and although open plan it feels intimate.
Starters range from €6.95 to €13.50. Mains from 15.95 to 23.95 (and this includes rice).
We first kicked off with poppadoms and dips (no charge so we were off to a good start). I ordered Onion Bhaji for starter – it was absolutely delicious and a good portion size. It was crispy, light and very tasty and loved the little slice of dried tomato on top (I’m a sucker for a nice garnish – it’s all in the detail right). There was a very very spicy sauce with it but it was swirled around the side of dish rather than being covered in it so for anyone not partial to a spicy sauce they don’t need to endure something that’s been covered in sauce. For mains I ordered the Murgh Tikka Masala (it was a really generous portion), Basmati Rice and Garlic and Chive Naan (Naan was only so so). I’ve had many variations of this and this one I really enjoyed. With plenty of large pieces of tasty moist chicken smothered in a tasty sauce it was packed full of flavour. It was really enjoyable and hit the spot for my fix of Indian food. I was pleasantly surprised to see they had one of my new favourite drinks on the menu called Beekon – it’s a honey infused craft beer produced in Ireland. It’s light refreshing and the perfect drink to accompany a curry.
Total Bill: €82.05 – 1 starter, 2 mains with basmati and pilau rice, 2 naan breads, 3 pints beer, 2 bottles craft beer.
Although a trip to a restaurant should purely be about the food I believe it’s about a lot more and atmosphere, decor and staff definitely contribute to the overall dining experience. Doolally looks like it has the potential to be stuffy and high brow but in fact this couldn’t be further from the truth. The staff were really professional and very friendly with a lovely casual vibe. With an average priced menu and great food I think they will certainly pull in the punters. There are many Indian restaurants on the scene with interiors and decor that look dated with mediocre food. Stand up and pay attention because this new kid on the block will give some other places a run for their money.
A big thumbs up for me and I will definitely be back.
PS: When we were finally last to leave and went outside it was raining when a lovely charming, friendly and chatty French guy offered us both umbrellas and just thought it was such a nice touch. This guy could be the benchmark of great customer service. The perfect note to end a perfect night.
PPS: It is an Instagrammer’s paradise.