Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Franco-Irish Literary Festival

I'm not sure that it's my cup of tea, but you might be interested in the Franco-Irish Literary Festival.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

La Mère Zou

Yesterday I went to La Mère Zou for the first time. I'm not sure why I've never been there before; it's a nice restaurant in a convenient location (on Stephen's Green). It just doesn't seem to get much press.

The decor and atmosphere are spot on - clearly and enjoyably French without over-doing it. The waitresses are friendly, efficient and - let's not be coy - quite pretty. (Don't worry, ladies, I think you'll like the waiters too.) And my fellow diners appeared to be very satisfied with the experience.

As for the food: tasty, reasonably varied, and with a nice mix of price options including the €28.50 Early Bird menu. I had a nice French Onion Soup, followed by roasted cod with risotto and vegetables, finishing with the (extremely sweet) Creme Brulee. All three courses were good.

With the meal I had a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, selected by the restaurant. As someone who's barely able to tell one wine from another I was impressed that I could immediately taste that this was a quality wine. Damned if I can remember its delightfully over-complicated French name - just trust the waiter/sommelier and you'll do fine.

So all in all, a very excellent restaurant.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Handel's Messiah

One of my favourite cultural events of the year is Messiah on the Street. It's a choral performance of Handel's Messiah performed on Fishamble Street - fittingly so, given that that is the site of the original world premier of Messiah. So if you've time, turn up at 1 pm on Tuesday April 13th. Really, you should; if the weather is at all nice it is a lovely, happy crowd experience.

Temple Bar Cultural Trust have built a series of events around this main event.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


Great news! With the end of The Tudors I feared for the Irish film industry - but now a new series on a similar scale is to be shot, Camelot.

Irish National Opera

I don't know as much as I should about Opera, but I'm glad to see that Opera Ireland and Opera Theatre Company will merge into a single organisation, Irish National Opera. The press release is here.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Grand Canal Theatre has opened

The Grand Canal Theatre has opened. They've started off with Swan Lake but looking at the list of upcoming events it's clear that there'll be many different types of events - "Ballets, Musicals, Family Shows, Drama, Concerts and Opera" as the website puts says.

I particularly like that the website lists events not just for the next few weeks but for most of the rest of the year.

Dine in Dublin - Restaurant Week

Dine in Dublin - Restaurant Week is back. It's a good idea - discounted set price menus for a week from a wide variety of restaurants.

Having said that, in these recessionary times €25 to €30 for an evening meal in a good restaurant is no longer the bargain it might once have been. Restaurants now frequently offer great deals, so I wonder if Dine in Dublin should have aimed for €20 to €25.

Anyway, I'm hoping to go to one or more of the listed restaurants during the week. La Mere Zou looks promising - its Restaurant Week offer is here.

Green Zone

Fairly enjoyable, though nothing special.

Good: Iraqis are portrayed as people with motivations, feelings and thoughts, not just gun-slinging bad-guys to be shot dead.
Bad: Brendan Gleeson's American accent. He's a good actor but his accent just wanders around too much.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

St Patrick's Day

St Patrick's Day: pretty good parade, very good atmosphere, no rain. Win.

I've rarely if ever seen the city this busy. I like it.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Trinity's Long Room Hub - the college's Arts and Humanities research institute - regularly presents a range of interesting public lectures. The list of events can be found here. It sure is a varied list... personally I like the sound of The Meaning of Medieval Culture and 20/20 Vison ("A symposium on the likely state of the world in ten years time").

I think it's great to see the college engaging with the public like this, and I'm surprised it gets so little publicity.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Bach concert in Christ Church Cathedral

This sounds superb: JS Bach's Easter Cantatas in the magnificent setting that is Christ Church Cathedral. Wow, just wow.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Irish Whiskey Society

The Irish Whiskey Society meets once a month for whiskey (or whisky) tasting. This month's theme - on 25th March - is Pure Pot Still Whiskey. No, I don't know what that means, but it sounds damn tasty.

Reservation and payment in advance is required.