The best January deals in restaurants and cafes in Ireland
Restaurants around country offering special discounts to attract custom
January is a tough month for restaurateurs, and the recent VAT hike hasn’t made it any easier. We put out a call for those in the trade to tell us what they are doing to tempt diners to part with their cash in the leanest month of the year.
The responses came thick and fast, with a flurry of early bird offers, two-for-ones, meal deals and complimentary drinks.
There were some unusual one too, such as Fiver Friday at the School of Food in Thomastown, Co Kilkenny. Student chefs prepare a new menu every Friday, under supervision from tutors Dermot Gannon and Janine Kennedy, and for just €5, members of the public can sit down to a three-course meal, or take it away in the school’s compostible cartons. This offer is available until the current cohort of students complete their course at the end of March.
Branches of the Italian restaurant Milano have a particularly good offer, with 40 per cent off the cost of all food on their menus, Monday to Friday and Sunday, without any time or item restrictions. You’ll have to download or print the QR code on the Milano website to avail of this offer though.
At Carluccio's on Dawson Street in Dublin 2, if you buy a main course, you can order another and pay just €1 for it. Bru Bar & Bistro in Drogheda takes that idea a step further and will give diners a second main course free of charge when ordering from its a low-calorie, low-fat January special menu.
Saba, with two branches in Dublin, has just announced that it is the new official partner to Ireland’s women’s hockey team. Its January offers include a two-course express lunch for €14.95, and paleo-inspired additional menu items.
At Green 19 on Camden Street they are celebrating 10 years in business this month, and for the week of January 19th-25th, will revert back to their launch pricing, with all main courses €10. On Saturday, January 19th, they will have DJs playing day and night in the restaurant’s front window, and street artist Maser will have 19 pieces of his work hanging in the restaurant on Monday, January 21st.
There are birthday celebrations at Bresson in Monkstown, Co Dublin too, with 25 per cent off the à la carte menu for the month of January, to mark the restaurant’s first year in business.
On Wednesday, January 16th, chef proprietor Jerome Fernandez is cooking a special five-course French tasting menu at the Guinea Pig in Dalkey, Co Dublin which looks like exceptional value at €39.
Perhaps the best offer of all is a free bowl of steaming porridge and a piece of fresh fruit, offered by the owners of Skinny Batch Deli in Rush, Co Dublin. But you’ll have to be under 18 years of age, and on your way to school, in order to qualify. Kids eat free on Mondays at Fishbone in Clontarf (one per adult), and the same applies at Square Bistro in Lisburn on Wednesdays and Thursdays.
At the Irish Film Institute in Dublin, you can book a movie and a meal for €19. The deal runs Sunday to Tuesday, and includes any screening plus any main course from the new menu at the cafe bar.
Here is a round-up of some of the January-busting value being offered at restaurants around the country:
Tartine at Distillers Arms, Bushmills: Early bird two courses with a glass of wine, £19, 5-6.30pm, Weds-Sun.
Square Bistro, Lisburn: Kids eat free Weds-Thurs.
Novelli at AC Hotel, Belfast: Three courses and a bottle of wine for two people, £50.
Clenaghan’s, Moira: Two courses for £15, Weds-Sat, noon-3pm, and Weds-Thurs, 5-6.30pm.
Orso, Pembroke Street: Prix Fixe menu, three courses €19, Tues-Thurs, 5-7pm.
Spitjack Rotisserie, Washington Street: two course lunch €14, Mon-Fri, noon-3.45pm and Sat, 1-3.45pm.
The Bishopstown Bar, Bishopstown: Any two courses and a glass of wine, €19.95, seven days a week, after 4pm.
My Goodness, English Market: Veganuary meal deal, vegan nachos and kombucha or kefir, €10.
The Cornstore, Cornmarket Street: January lunch special, €10, and early bird €29.95, Mon-Fri.
The Foyle Hotel, Moville: Dinner cooked by chefs Brian McDermott and Derek Creagh, plus B&B , €150 for two, Weds and Thurs in January and February.
The Yellow Pepper, Letterkenny: Value menu, two courses €19/three courses €23, until 7pm every day except Saturday when it ends at 6.30pm.
The Lemon Tree, Letterkenny: Early bird, starter and main course, €22.50, seven nights a week, 5pm to 6.45pm (last orders).
Sonder, Letterkenny: Lunch special, sourdough bagette with chicken or falafel, Asian slaw and spicy fries, reduced to €9.95 until January 31st.
Milano (also Cork and Limerick): 40 per cent off food bill (Mon-Fri and Sun until 1pm); also two courses for €14.95, three courses for €17.95. You’ll need to download or print the QR code from the website milanooffers.ie.
Carluccio’s, Dawson Street: Main courses for €1 when you purchase another one at full price, until January 31st.
Bresson, Monkstown: First anniversary offer, 25 per cent off à la carte meals, all night Sun-Thurs, and before 6pm Fri-Sat, when starter and main course are ordered. Mention New Year when booking.
Saba, Clarendon Street and Baggot Street: Express lunch, two courses €14.95 ; mid-week menu, two courses, Sun-Weds, €24.95.
Green 19, Camden Street: For the week of their 10th birthday, Jan 19th-25th, all main courses €10.
Riba, Stillorgan: Treat Yourself Mondays, two courses and a glass of wine or prosecco €23. Early bird Sun-Thurs, two courses €22, three courses €26.
Wallace’s Taverna, Italian Quarter, and Wallace’s Asti, Croke Park: 20 per cent off food, 5-7pm, until January 31st; 25 per cent off wines to take away.
Michael’s, Mount Merrion: Two-course Tuesdays, €20.90 and early bird menu €23.95.
Feast, Golden Lane: Bottomless brunch, €14.90 for freeflow cocktails with a brunch order. Set menu two courses €24, three courses €28, all night Tues-Sat.
McHugh’s Wine & Dine, Portmarnock: Steak Tuesdays, €20 for Irish striploin and fries, with a glass of wine or beer. Wine Wednesdays, €10 off any bottle when two courses are ordered. Fiver Friday, €5 prosecco, gin and tonic or cocktail of the day.
Skinny Batch Deli, Rush: Free porridge and piece of fruit on school days to anyone under 18 years of age.
Botanic House, Glasnevin: Early bird three courses and a bottle of wine €75 for two people
Bobos Burgers, Wexford Street, Dame Street, Abbey Street: Limited Edition €10 menu - full Irish breakfast plus tea or coffee; and burger and regular chips, or any large salad and a glass of wine. Every day, but excluding dame Street branch only on Fri-Sat.
The Bernard Shaw, South Richmond Street: €13 pizza and a pint, Mon-Fri, 4-6.30pm.
Rage, Blackrock: Early bird two courses €24, three courses €29.50, all night Tues-Thurs; 5-7pm Fri-Sat.
57 The Headline, Clanbrassil Street: Cheap Date Night (date not included!), Weds-Thurs, €47 for two starters, two mains, two drinks. Large cheeseboard and wine, €20 Mon-Wed.
Grapevine, Dalkey: €1 corkage Tues-Weds, year round.
Old Street, Malahide: Wine Wednesday, entire list half price. Friday supper, three courses for two people, with sides, a bottle of wine and coffee/tea, €75.
Ashton’s Gastropub, Clonskeagh: Wednesday Steak Special, 4-9pm, 6oz fillet and all the trimmings, €20, or €25 with a glass of wine or a pint of craft beer.
Vermillion, Terenure: Dinner for four, two courses, and a bottle of wine €118, all week until January 31st. From the à la carte menu, with some supplements.
Bombay Pantry branches: Early bird takeaway €9.50, vada/bhajia and any chicken or veg main course with rice or nan; Ruby Tuesday, any main course and rice, €11.
Steps of Rome, Windy Arbour: Free bottle of wine for parties of four or more, Tues-Weds, until January 31st.
Pizzayard, Ranelagh: Free glass of prosecco or wine with every meal, or free bottle of Prosecco with every takeaway order of five pizzas.
Peachtree East, Tallaght Cross: Date Night Fridays, bread board and dips, starters, main courses, sides and desserts for two, and a bottle of wine, €79.
Sisu Izakaya, Stephen’s Street Lower: No increase on €10 lunch special bento box.
Caffe Amore, Sth Great George’s Street: Week day lunch special, two courses and a glass of wine €14.85 (€11.80 without the wine).
Whelehans Wines, Loughlinstown: €8 corkage in the wine bar.
Platform 61, South William Street: Early bird, two courses €20/three courses €25. A different à la carte main course at half price every day of the week, when ordered along with a starter.
Kerala Kitchen, Baggot Street: No VAT increase on weekend Biryani Brunch, €15.95 per person, including one side order, samosas and mint chutney and bottomless chai, noon-3pm, Sat-Sun.
Dillingers, Ranelagh: Monday Burger Deal, any burger with a glass of wine or a beer, €15; Nacho Tuesdays, super nachos all night, €10; Steak Wednesdays, 10oz steak, side, sauce and onion rings, €21.
The Butcher Grill, Ranelagh: Côte de boeuf for two with smokey beans and onion rings, Mon-Tue, €50.
777: Margarita Mondays, two for €14; Taco Tuesdays, two for €6; 777 Sundays, all dishes €7.77.
Grano, Stoneybatter: Early bird, two courses €19/three courses €24, Tues-Thurs, 5-7pm and Sun, noon-7pm.
The Seafood Cafe, Temple Bar: Oyster Happy Hour, 4-5pm. New early bird menu launches Thursday, January 17th, 5-6.30pm, two courses €25/three courses €28. New cook-for-me option where the kitchen serves up what it thinks is best on the day.
Klaw, Temple Bar: Oyster Happy Hour, 5-6pm.
Amici, Smithfield Square: Free glass of prosecco or wine with every main course ordered, until January 31st.
One Society Cafe, Lr Gardiner Street: 20 per cent off all breakfast/brunch orders before 11am until January 31st, and a free garlic and cheese pizza with every two pizzas ordered in the evening.
The Yarn, Liffey Street: Two-for-one on pizzas, Tuesdays, from 5pm.
The Washerwoman, Glasnevin: Cote de boeuf (serves three), €45, Tuesdays.
Ukiyo, Exchequer Street: two hours free karaoke for groups of four or more ordering from the Neighbourhood menu, €30 for three courses.
Fitzpatrick's Castle Hotel, Killiney: Three courses and a bottle of wine for two, €80, available every night until February 12th. Afternoon tea, €35 for two.
Suesey Street, Fitzwilliam Place: Wine Wednesdays, selection of bottles at half price or less.
Kinara, Clontarf: Early bird three courses, €23.50, Mon-Thurs, 4-8pm.
Fishbone, Clontarf: Kids eat free (one per adult dining) on Mondays; two-course early catch menu, €22, all night Mon-Tues and until 6.30pm Weds-Sat.
The Back Page, Phibsborough: Pizza and a pint, €13, Mon-Fri, 4-6.30pm.
Guinea Pig, Dalkey: Five-course French tasting menu on Weds, Jan 16th, €39; four-course menu for two with a bottle of wine, €85 until January 31st. Early bird €19 (one course), €23.50 (two courses), €27 (three courses).
Irish Film Institute, Temple Bar: Movie and a meal deal, €19, Sun-Tues, any movie and any main course.
Poulet Bonne Femme (also Meath and Wicklow): Family meal deal (lunch or dinner) for €21.50 includes a free range rotisserie chicken, coleslaw, salad and baguette. At Avoca branches in Monkstown, Rathcoole, Dunboyne and Kilmacanogue.
Bowls by Kwanghi, 56 Marlborough Street: Any 8oz coffee and Portuguese custard tart €5.50; lunch offer, build your own bowl, plus water or soft drink, €10.
Tartare, Dominick Street Lr: Lunch special, artisan sourdough sandwich and soup €10.50.
BoTOWN, Dominick Street: Burger with double cooked beef dripping fries and a soft drink, €10, until January 31st. Must mention Irish Times offer.
Caprice Cafe, Church Lane: Two course dinner €20, Thurs-Sat.
School of Food, Thomastown: Fiver Friday, three course meal, cooked by the students, under supervision, €5, eat in or take away, 11.30am-2pm.
Copia Green, Castletroy: Healthy Hour, 30 per cent off selected breakfast dishes, 7.30-8.30am, daily until January 31st.
Off The Bone Gastropub, Raheen Roundabout: 10 per cent off everything on the menu (except beverages), until January 31st, when you mention The Irish Times.
Scholars Townhouse Hotel, King Street: Pasta Tuesdays, homemade pasta for €18, including a glass of wine; Steak Wednesdays, 10oz ribeye and a glass or wine or beer for €25.
Bru Bar & Bistro, Dyer Street: Two-for-one main courses on the Bru-less menu (healthy, low calorie, low fat), Mon-Thurs until January 31st.
Cinnamon Garden, Ashbourne: Early bird two courses €12.95, Sun-Fri, 5-7.30pm; Sunday lunch, two courses, €12,95, 12.30-3.30pm.
Porky’s at The Squealing Pig: Midweek Madness three-course menu €17
Sweet Beat, Bridge Street: Super salad and cold pressed juice €11; lentil and mushroom ‘sausage’ roll and coffee €5.50; muffin and coffee €5, all to take away.
Mikey Ryan’s Bar & Kitchen, Cashel: Early bird two courses €21.50/three courses €26.50 (including steak), Mon-Thurs, until 7.30pm.
Oysters Restaurant, Strabane: High Tea menu, two courses £14.50/three courses £17.50, Tues-Fri, 4-7pm
Bia + Brew, Tramore: All breakfast and brunch options under €10 at this new vegetarian and vegan cafe.
Bodega, John Street: Three course meal for two with a bottle of wine, and two cocktails at Davy Mac’s Gin Bar, €85, Mon-Fri. Must mention offer when booking.
The Spinnaker, Dunmore East: Weekly meal deal, beef or chicken burger, Thai curry or pizza €10, Weds-Thurs, 3-7.15pm; fish and chips, €10, Fri.