At long last, the building which formerly housed Rathmines’ Bowery pub is getting an extraordinary new lease of life in the form of The Dunmore, a new neighbourhood bar and restaurant specialising in fresh seafood and charcoal-fired cuisine paired with expertly mixed cocktails. Visitors are in for a very pleasant surprise from the moment they walk through the door.
At the helm of this new venture is brother and sister duo Clifden and Louise Foyle of the renowned family-run Strand Inn in Dunmore East, Co Waterford. Leading the culinary team is head chef Josef Cervenka, formerly of Asador in Dublin 4; while Neil Kenna (formerly of Chapter One, Luna and the Old Spot) will take on the role of general manager. This powerhouse collective is just the beginning of an exciting hospitality formula.
As owners of The Strand Inn, the Foyles are no strangers to providing customers with a first-rate dining experience, and they’ve helped evolve the family-run Inn, overseeing the redesign of the bedrooms and restaurant in recent years, while Clifden founded the neighbouring art school and exhibition space, Artform.
When the Bowery premises became available, art and interior design enthusiast Clifden knew it was the perfect spot for the family’s next project. “We had just moved to Rathmines, right before Covid hit, and were ready to start something new here. The building has stunning high ceilings, beautiful old brick walls, and a great soul,” says Clifden. “Rathmines is a super, vibrant neighbourhood, and with parking available in the Swan centre right next door, it just seemed like a great opportunity.”
They enlisted the design expertise of LUCA Architecture in Dublin, who turned the former Bowery into a sophisticated space made for relaxed dining and social gatherings.
“We were really intrigued by this project from the get-go,” says Catherine Crowe, director of LUCA Architecture. “You’d never know this building on Lower Rathmines Road houses such amazingly large and airy spaces, each very much with its own personality. With this in mind, we
decided to let the building speak for itself and strip back and enhance what was there. During the refurbishment, we uncovered more historic fabric which makes the design special. The materials used are mostly re-used from the building itself to give a sense of continuity and timelessness, with some newer, sharper, dramatic designer elements to contrast with them in the furniture and lighting. The design is pared back to allow the building to both be the main event and also a dramatic backdrop to relaxed eating and dancing.”
The innovative menu, created by The Dunmore’s head chef Josef Cervenka, includes light snacks as well as show-stopping main courses prepared in The Dunmore’s charcoal oven, including juicy steaks and burgers, venison saddle, and fire-roasted chicken, all boasting fresh locally sourced ingredients, and as with The Strand Inn, deliciously fresh seafood that speaks for itself (think Kilmore Quay crab claws, chargrilled Atlantic prawn skewers, Duncannon mussels and comforting seafood chowder followed by fillet of turbot, charred John Dory, and The Dunmore seafood pie). Impressive vegetarian dishes are also on offer puy lentils, garlic, chilli & feta and a chermoula potato and spinach pie and delicious roasts are a speciality for Sunday lunch for the whole family.
Beautifully prepared cocktails include clever twists on beloved classics like a negroni made with Campari, Waterford gin, sweet vermouth, and Amaro Montenegro; a rum old fashioned, a Tokyo iced tea, and a cherry Manhattan alongside signature mixes like the Thyme is Now (Wexbury Strawberry Vodka, thyme-infused Cointreau, lemon juice, cranberry juice, orange bitters, and strawberry syrup), The Tower (Waterford gin, elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, sugar syrup, and fresh cucumber and raspberries), and the Tay-Up (Opihr Gin, Earl Grey and hibiscus tea syrup, tarragon leaves, rhubarb and ginger liqueur, and sour apple juice).
Live music will be available at weekends and The Dunmore will also host art events and exhibitions, lining those historic walls with works by emerging artists. Large groups are catered for in the restaurant and a private area for 20 guests is also available for reservations.
The Dunmore, located at 196 Rathmines Road Lower, Rathmines, Dublin 6 D06 AY77 will open its doors seven days a week for lunch and dinner from Friday, November 24 with bookings for the restaurant available from November 17 at thedunmore.ie.
Clifden, Louise, Neil, Josef and the entire team at The Dunmore are looking forward to extending a warm welcome to guests this November, whether they’re meeting up with friends for pre-Christmas cocktails and small bites or looking to sneak away for a quiet Sunday lunch.
Advanced booking is available for the restaurant but walk-ins are always welcome – just have a seat at the bar and the team will look after you. Friendly dogs are welcome, too.
Follow The Dunmore on Instagram @thedunmored6