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The best restaurants to try in Donegal right now

From oysters in Downings to pastel de nata in Dunfanaghy

Casa Cafe and Deli

Main Street, Dunfanaghy;

The very northern part of the country is not where one might expect to find Brazilian food but when local Tara Alcorn met Anderson Rodrigues da Silva the path was set. They lovingly opened the small Casa Cafe and Deli, offering a range of brunch dishes and sandwiches. Anderson’s influence really shines through in the sweet offerings, with egg-based quindim and the ever-popular pastel de nata. Pet friendly. JC


The Harbour Bar, Downings;

Bagging an outside table at Fisk is like hitting the jackpot on a summer’s day in Donegal, looking out across the expanse of the bay. It’s a no-bookings, totally chilled set-up where Tony Davidson and Lina Reppert serve oysters, tacos, bao buns, moules frites, scampi and fish and chips. CH

The Olde Glen Bar

Glenmenagh, Carrickart; 083-1585777;

Ciarán Sweeney’s legendary fermented potato bread, which he serves with a copper pot of frothy bacon mousse, has us beating a path to Donegal each summer, where it’s on the €60 four-course menu along with tasty fish and meat dishes. There’s a more casual vibe at the outdoor dining area. Read our review here. CH

The Pavilion at Rathmullan House

Rathmullan House, Rathmullan; 074-9158188,

With the beautiful beaches of Lough Swilly on its doorstep, Rathmullan House has one of the best settings in the country. Seating 100 guests, the picturesque Pavilion tent is pitched on the front lawn, offering family-friendly, wood-fired pizzas, ice-cream and guest dishes. Chefs draw on ingredients from the walled garden and there’s a nice selection of craft beers, ciders and wines. Read our review here. JC


Pretty Baked Bakery

Unit 7, Millcourt Mews, Donegal town, F94 EC5X

Roisin Gillen’s bakery is a must-stop venue in Donegal town. The chef, formerly one of the founding team at Heron & Grey and subsequently Liath in Blackrock market, set up her business in her hometown in September 2021 and now, approaching its second birthday, it is the place to go for all manner of sweet and savoury baked goods. The bagel and panini menu is the perfect lunch-on-the-go option.