5 of the best independent restaurants in Dublin

The charcuterie board at Wallace’s Asti is perfect for sharing. Credit: Wallace’s Asti

Dublin’s restaurant scene is as vibrant as it is because of its independent restaurants. In Drumcondra, diners are transported to Sardinia; a Monkstown duo celebrate lobsters from neighbouring Howth; and a city centre wine bar offers a vinyl soundtrack to elevate any meal.

As a tribute to these restaurants and others, OpenTable and Mastercard have launched Dine Local. Book your table between October 23 and November 19 to savour the unique flavours and warm hospitality that define these precious local spots.

Hop on these Dine Local reservations stat.

 

Read on for the best independent restaurants in Dublin.

 

Wallace’s Asti (Drumcondra, D1)

Stuffed pasta shells sit on two plates garnished with basil at Wallace’s Asti, a restaurant in Dublin

Pasta is made fresh at Wallace’s Asti.
Credit: Wallace’s Asti

For a tour of Sardinian classics, head to Wallace’s Asti in Drumcondra
Wallace’s Asti welcomes diners like old friends in a comforting embrace. Servers can often be overheard trading jokes, which only adds to the warmth of this spot. The intimate space is dominated by a long counter with a view of the open kitchen where chef Domenico Santo (who hails from Alghero) turns out Sardinian classics. For Dine Local, consider ordering the Sardinian Night menu (€39pp) featuring culurgiones, a dumpling-like stuffed pasta and juicy porceddu, or suckling pig. Plus, an Italian wine list and a covered and heated outdoor area give you everything you need for a cosy evening at the restaurant.

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Row Wines (Coppinger Row, D2)

Head chef Frank Imperial is teaming up with Bahay’s Richie Castill at Row Wines, a restaurant in Dublin

Head chef Frank Imperial is teaming up with Bahay’s Richie Castill.
Credit: Row Wines

Tuck into a family-style Filipino feast at Row Wines in Coppinger Row
Marc and Conor Bereen (Orwell Road, Charlotte Quay) unleashed Row Wines, an homage to Tokyo’s listening bars, earlier this year. A green leather banquette, orange wicker chairs, and chic artwork mounted on coffee-coloured walls all reinforce the restaurant’s effortlessly cool vibe. A built-in deck with an extensive record collection is the focal point of this spot—you want to go here to be serenaded by the sounds of soul, reggae, and funk, all while sipping natural wines. Plus, for Dine Local, head chef Frank Imperial is teaming up with Bahay’s Richie Castillo on October 29 for a five-course family-style Filipino menu featuring Irish ingredients.

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Peperina City Bistro (Richmond St, D2)

A breaded cutlet of chicken on a patterned plate is served with chips and salad at Peperina City Bistro, a restaurant in Dublin

The milanesas consistently draw in locals at Peperina City Bistro.
Credit: Peperina City Bistro

Dig into Argentinian comfort food at Peperina City Bistro in South Dublin
Argentina arrives in South Dublin courtesy of Peperina City Bistro, a new restaurant by celebrated Irish-Argentinian duo Evan McAuliffe and Diego Cabrera (Peperina Garden Bistro) that opened in September. Cabrera has also partnered with Argentinian chef Ida Landa, who recreates her childhood favourites at the restaurant. Locals have been returning for the empanadas with beef, chicken, and cheese and chicken or steak milanesas with salad and fries. For Dine Local, get some friends together for a €20 two-course lunch Monday to Friday that comes with a soft drink of your choice.

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Camden Kitchen (Grantham Street, D8)

Wood pigeon sits on top of toast with seasonal greens at Camden Kitchen, a restaurant in Dublin

The wild-game menu is a highlight at Camden Kitchen this autumn.
Credit: Camden Kitchen

Enjoy seasonal eating with a wild-game menu at Camden Kitchen (Camden Market)
Tucked in a corner of Dublin’s Camden Market, this modern seasonal bistro is adored by locals for its tranquil ambience and consistently excellent food. As part of Dine Local, chef and owner Padraic Hayden currently has an autumnal menu (running through November 19) that spotlights wild game. Feast on dishes like wood pigeon and venison (both from Wicklow) with pumpkin, mushrooms, and horseradish. Cap things off with poached pear, gingerbread crumble, and whiskey ice cream.

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Lobstar (Monkstown)

A filled lobster roll sits half unwrapped in paper on a countertop facing the window at Lobstar, a restaurant in Dublin

The lobster roll at this seafood joint has gained a cult following.
Credit: Lobstar

For seafood in a stunning setting, head to Lobstar (Monkstown)
Located in the heart of picturesque Monkstown, Lobster is the ideal post-Dun Laoghaire pier or Seapoint dining destination. Veronika and Zsolt Zakar have created a restaurant that’s gained a cult following for its attentive service and simple top-notch dishes. The lobsters on the menu come from Howth and much of the seafood menu is sourced from Dun Laoghaire. Come for Dine Local and choose four-courses from the main menu, along with wine—it’s arguably one of the best seafood meals in the city.

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Shekha Vyas is a London-based reporter, writing about business, lifestyle, and food. Follow her on Instagram at @shekhav or on TikTok at @tastingbritain.

 

Still hungry? Explore more great restaurants to try in Dublin on OpenTable.
Keen for more of Dublin’s best restaurants? Check out the below guides: