When you live in the city centre, your home becomes a popular port of call for friends who live ‘out foreign’ (and when I say ‘foreign’ I don’t just mean overseas, I also mean locations within Ireland, outside the M50 ring motorway.) Something about a city dwelling is more appealing to visitors, than a pleasant semi-detached house in the suburbs. Luckily I am a sociable sort and enjoy receiving guests. I have a perfectly comfortable fold out sofa bed that can be used for friends and other visiting dignitaries.
Sometimes people come to stay midweek while on courses for work, and ask that if I can accommodate them – as their employers won’t pay €250 a night for a room, thanks to the city being fully booked because the pope is paying a visit. On a week that Britney Spears is playing a concert. I graciously agreed. As a reward for my hospitality, the multi-billion euro global multinational for which he works, agreed to finance a thank you meal.
Yesterday evening was that meal.
Our reservation was for 7.30pm. As we had an hour to kill, we called into the Dawson Lounge – a subterranean bar on Dawson Street, that like so many other tiny bars, advertises itself as being the smallest in the land. As we were supping our beverages I glanced across at the gentleman sitting in front of me. His porcine features looked as familiar as they did well fed. Who was it only former Irish Prime Minister / Taoiseach John Bruton. I felt a little vomitous at the sight, so we made our excuses and left.
Our destination for dinner was a few doors down, at Peruke and Periwig. An old Georgian building built some centuries ago, and for many years a wig shop for rich people. Nowadays it is a restaurant and bar. The bar is on the ground floor, the restaurant is located upstairs. The stairway to the restaurant is luxuriantly decorated with pictures and carpets of the bygone era. The restaurant itself is plush and extravagant with wine coloured velvet seats; the walls covered with prints of paintings of the rich Protestants who would have been the clientele of the wigmaker. Very luxurious and old-world.
The staff were attentive and friendly and knew the history of the venue when I asked them.
Despite the opulent surroundings it didn’t feel oppressive.
The food was delicious. For my starter I had mini chicken Kievs on a rocket salad base. My friend had chicken liver parfait on toast. For the main we both had strip-bone steak (mine was cooked rare) with side of truffle mash. ‘Tis far from truffle mash I was reared let me tell you. Very decadent and most tasty. For desert we had warm rhubarb and apple crumble served with gingerbread ice-cream.
For drinks we drank a bottle of Pinot Grigio.
The damage when it arrived was €131 – not cheap, but not too outrageous for a three course meal for two, accompanied by a bottle of decent wine.
All told a very fine restaurant that felt like a real treat. Best of all it felt quite unpretentious in terms the menu and décor, despite the extravagance of the design. The hipster element was well represented bythe diners. This came as no surprise – why wouldn’t they be there? Peruke and Periwig is a lovely establishment.
By thy way anyone reading this ought to come see my new play ‘Mother’s Little Treasure’ at 8pm in the Pearse Centre from Tuesday 28th August to Saturday 1st September. Tickets available here..