When it was confirmed in December that restrictions would be lifted we made a very short list of places we had not yet visited in 2021 but would love to get a chance to dine in before the end of the year. Nightmarket Restaurant in Ranelagh was on our list, we made our booking and counted down the days to Dec 18th.
On a bitterly could December evening with a three month long hankering for some authentic Thai Food and healthy appetites in tow we headed in the direction of Nightmarket. Established in 2017, Nightmarket is a firm favourite among locals and not so local food lovers like ourselves.
Owners Conor Sexton and Jutarat Suwankeeree are both long established in the business of recreating the Thai dining experience here in Dublin. The couple met whilst working together in KOH, another fine Dublin based Thai restaurant. Their vision to bring the vibe and authenticity of a friendly, buzzing neighbourhood restaurant to Ranelagh was realised in 2017 when they opened Nightmarket and fully immersed themselves and their business in the community of Ranelagh, the plush Dublin suburb they call home.
We arrived for our booking like giddy teenagers that had been let out for the first time, the sheer excitement of eating out again was all consuming. We were staying in Dublin for the night so the luxury of strolling to the restaurant and knowing we could indulge in some great food and wine was quite the treat.
Nightmarket is a two part restaurant with the main dining space and the Terrace. The window seat is our favourite spot in Winter. The Terrace is fully heated and super cosy but to us it represents buzzy, balmy summer evenings spent sipping and snacking on delectable delights.
We choose to dine early, still nervous about all things Covid related we thought it better to avoid crowds however, we need not have worried. Every precaution had been taken to ensure each diners safety and comfort with amply social distancing in place. Taking our window seats and settling in for what has now become a rare treat.
Unable to resist the call of a dumpling overdose we choose the Thoong Thong €10.00 – Crispy Thai dumplings with minced chicken & prawn. The audible crunch from the super crisp filo pastry a delight in itself. The filling of succulent minced Chicken and Prawn, seasoned to perfection. Sweet chilli sauce for dipping adding just the right amount of heat.
Having ordered dumplings for days the Kanom Jeeb €10.00 made for a double delight – Steamed Thai dumplings, the filling comprised of minced pork & prawn. The Pork definitely adds a greater depth of flavour over chicken. A side of Soy & Rice Vinegar for dunking made for a very delicious start.
The extensive wine list in Nightmarket reads like an absolute dream and the wine knowledge of the staff is outstanding.
We choose a bottle of Moment of Silence, €48.00. This South African White is a blend of Chenin, Chardonnay and Viognier. Having had this beautiful wine before we were eager to enjoy it again. The fabulous freshness complimented our dishes beautifully. An Old World blend that is bursting with juicy fruit, citrus, with a subtle hint of apple coming through the mellow middle palate due to the Viognier.
Our first main dish, Gang Kiew Warn €19.50. A fragrant and flavoursome bowl of hearty goodness. Not all Thai Green Curries are created equal and this one was on the far superior end of the scale. The vibrancy of both colour and flavour was spectacular. A punchy palate pleaser of a dish.
Next up was the Phad Thai Goong €19.50. A medley of prawn, dried shrimp, egg, crispy tofu, beansprouts, spring onion and tamarind sauce with oodles of delicious stir fried rice noodles. There is something about the extreme freshness of the flavour combinations at play here that is just so appetising.
Too full for dessert we opted to finish off with an Old Fashioned each, a high spirited end to a wonderful evening.
The uncomplicated and consistently brilliant execution of authentic Thai dishes in a relaxed and jovial atmosphere has been captured to perfection by the Nightmarket Team. For the remainder of lockdown they are providing takeaway Wednesday to Sunday and you can
Click Here to order. As we are not local we cannot avail of this but in the words of the honourable Mr Dermot Kennedy….”some summer night I hope I see you again.”
WRITTEN BY KEITH MAHON & OLIVIA BYRNE