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The best places to eat on Dublin’s Camden Street right now

This buzzy street has grown into a bustling night-time quarter teeming with diverse and exciting eateries

Camden Street has arguably come to represent the hub of Dublin city’s nightlife district: a buzzy drag of restaurants, pubs, food shops and street stalls running through the south inner city. It’s a short distance from what remains of the capital’s nightclub scene on Harcourt Street. This is where the kids congregate late at night, but grown-ups out for a richer experience should stick to the eateries and hostelries on this parallel strip. From neon-soaked spots designed to resemble Asian subways to former butchers and off-licences turning out some of the finest food in the capital, here’s our pick of the best places to eat on one of Dublin’s best streets.


22 Camden Street Lower, Dublin 2;

Pull up a stool and enjoy delicious, reasonably priced food and wine. David Bradshaw is the head chef at Frank’s, the former pork butchers with its original sign in place. There is a subtle finesse to how he cooks. You get the sense that this is a young chef who is settling in, bringing a truly original take to his dishes, using wild produce he has foraged, such as mustard garlic and flowering currant. The dishes change regularly and there’s no pressure to commit to a certain number of plates or order everything at the same time. It’s about enjoying the vibe, the wine and the really delicious food. But it’s walk-in only, so be sure to get there early. Corinna Hardgrave

The Port House Cava

21 Camden Street Lower, St Kevin’s; (01) 534 9732,

A 100-seater specialising in tapas and Iberian wines and cocktails. Port House Cava is open seven days a week and is geared towards walk-ins, with reservations only for tables of eight or more. The menu has a big selection of proper Spanish tapas, a weekly changing selection of Iberian cheeses and cured meats, three types of cava by the glass and seven by the bottle, including the 0% Freixenet, as well as pitchers of sangria and spritzer. The three-storey building has a 35-seat private diningroom on the top floor. Marie Claire Digby


24 Camden Street Lower; (01) 534 5462,

The naan bread is fluffy and warm, perfect for piling up the charred slices of lamb, the salad of lettuce, onions, tomatoes and olives, and garlic and chilli sauces. The lamb shish is quite firm, there are plenty of big meaty pieces and all the accompaniments. The falafel is crunchy outside with spicing that leans more to India. The Kurdish beans, which have some small pieces of lamb, are in a warming tomato sauce. CH


Hang Dai

20 Camden Street Lower, Dublin 2; 01-545 8888,

Don’t let the anonymous takeaway street facade fool you, this is no neon orange chicken-balls joint. Instead at this uber-cool restaurant you will find reimagined, fun takes on some Chinese food favourites such as juicy prawn toast, lip-smackingly good duck pancakes and a dedicated vegetarian menu section. All combinations that pair well with their wonderful drinks menu and cocktails galore. Downstairs you can dine at subway-style tables in this windowless disco room, while upstairs is home to the Gold Bar and a fully covered balcony which can be booked for private dining and events. Ali Dunworth

Mister S

32 Camden Street Lower, Dublin 2; 01-6835555,

Ireland has never been the place for lots of options for bona fide barbecue, which is one reason why Mister S has made such an impact. The beef short rib, the Andarl Farm pork tomahawk, the barbecue monktail – every dish is a reminder of why cooking with fire has no substitution. Their ingredient sourcing is commendable, as are the prices they manage to sell their utterly delicious dishes at. The downstairs long table can sit private groups of up to 18. Lisa Cope


17 Camden St, Dublin 2; 01-4052222,

It has been a simple formula at this buzzing Vietnamese and Thai restaurant with a western take since it opened its doors 10 years ago. The street-food principle at play here is food cooked from fresh ingredients quickly, in a wok or curry pot. It’s casual and quick. You pay for your meal at the counter and everything then arrives to the table at once, so there’s that sense of takeaway flurry, where everything gets tasted and shared. The finale comes in the shape of Irish street food: ice-cream cones from a traditional cone machine which you serve yourself in your own Mr Whippy moment. CC


43 Camden Street, Dublin 2; 01-5557755,

If Pickle was in London, it would have a Michelin star. We could happily eat every dish on Sunil Ghai’s north Indian-inspired menu and start all over again. Paratha bread is made fresh each day. Minced goat curry is layered with spices and cooked slowly with onions, garlic and cloves, and served with a soft maska pao bun. And then there are the jars of pickles, some of them many years old. CH


5/6 Camden Market, Dublin 8;

Sprezzatura owner Thom Lawson wanted to open a pasta bar with Italian ideas and Irish produce, sustainability at its core, and it’s been a queue-creating formula. The menu is a compendium of Irish produce, with Cashel Blue gnocchi, “tyres” with Little Cress pesto and Toonsbridge ricotta, and Irish heirloom tomato salad. Oil is rapeseed not olive, stracciatella is Cork not Campania, and the semolina pasta for the flour is milled in Kildare. LC


Charlotte Way, Dublin 2; 01-402 2000,

Nestled on the wind tunnel at the top of Harcourt Street and Camden Street, Doughboys is a New York-style sandwich shop serving fun, incredibly filling sandwiches, soups and sides. Ingredients are fresh and the sandwiches we’ve tried are very filling. Rachel Collins

Damascus Gate

10 Upper Camden St, Dublin 2; 01-475 2000,

Damascus Gate is a bright spot at the end of Upper Camden Street. The restaurant is in a former cafe and still has a cafe feel at the front. One of the people behind it is Palestinian restaurateur Basil Ziadeh. There are lots of typical Middle Eastern staples on the well-priced menu. Desserts are delightful. The house-made baklava are sweet and nutty, rather than sickly syrupy, with hits of pistachio and rosewater. Damascus Gate has been a great addition to Camden Street, and it proves the point: food is food and here it’s delicious.


39 Camden Street Lower; (01) 5984880,

Delahunt has one of the loveliest diningrooms in Dublin. Its Edwardian DNA was retained as it evolved from its former life as Carvill’s off-licence to the restaurant that Harry and Meghan popped into for a bite in 2018. It has always had a set menu, but more recently, has moved to an €80 multi-course tasting menu in the evening (like the city craves yet another). There is something intuitive, spontaneous even, about the food here. This may be because they now have a farm where some of the kitchen team spend one day a week, planting, harvesting and maintaining the space. There’s no sense that it’s a tasting menu designed to control costs, make the chef’s life easier or ensure dogged consistency on the off chance of a visit from a Michelin inspector. For once, it seems to be all about the diner, with food that is utterly delicious, cooked with joy and an innate level of generosity. CH

Camden Kitchen

3A Grantham St, St Kevin’s; (01) 4760125,

Camden Kitchen is a well-known lunch spot with a Parisian vibe, but its real charm is at night when it feels like a local secret. The crowds of office workers that fill local lunch venues by day have gone and with food this good, who needs Paris? CC

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