What makes a great restaurant wine list? A triangle composed by a selection that pairs well with the food offer, has a focused variety that offers choice without redundancy and of course, value at all price points. Add to that a personal touch or a stroke of surprise and it will step from fine to memorable.
If you’re the type of diner who chooses a restaurant based on their wine experience and who picks their meal in function of the wine they want to enjoy instead of vice-versa, add the venues below to your repertoire of vinous oases, for they will spoil you with choice: here are 10 restaurants with some of the best wine lists in Dublin.
This restaurant not only boasts a Michelin star, it hosts Ireland’s best sommelier Julie Dupouy. There’s no surprise, love and effort are clearly put into the wine list and the way guests experience and taste. You can explore their 4 course or 6 course wine menus or indulge in wines by the glass such as aged German Rieslings or Grand Cru Burgundy along with superb bottles from Rioja, Rhône or South Africa.
While the luxury seekers will find vintage Champagne and celebrated vintages from the finest appellations, those looking to try new things will find great taste and value in the “Sommelier Recommendations” section, packed with exciting bottles from regions with unique character.
Where: Joshua House, 21 Dawson St, Dublin 2
More information: thegreenhouserestaurant.ie
Cavern is located underneath award-winning shop Baggot Street Wines. While you have approximately 700 wines at your choice thanks to its connection to the store, it also has a well crafted wine menu with an emphasis on Mediterranean bottles. They frequently organise wine dinners, tastings and other events so keep an eye on their calendar.
Expect over 30 wines by the glass, including several premium bottles made divisible thanks to Coravin’s magic. The majority of the bottles on the list is below the €40 mark, the staff is knowledgeable and truly helpful and the atmosphere just begs for you to relax and enjoy your glass.
Where: 17 Baggot Street Upper, Dublin
More information: cavernbaggotst.com
This authentic Nepalese restaurant not only does outstanding cuisine, it features a comprehensive wine menu that showcases bottles from the world’s most prestigious regions new and old. Expect a delightful mapa-mundi of vinous wanderlust with equal love placed into amazing bottles from Chile, Australia, California and Lebanon as well as those from Italy, Spain and of course, France.
If you fancy a truly special treat, ask them about the premium wine selection awaiting for you at their cellar, in which they proudly store Bordeaux and other top wines.
Where: 28 Eustace St, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
More information: montys.ie
Siberian-born restaurateaur Olesya has combined a menu of Russian influences with an enviable wine list that offers over 400 bottles, about 100 of them by the generous glass (they pour 1/4 bottle per glass) including the usual suspects as well as those who only can be spotted when there’s room to experiment.
Expect rare sights such as Sherry and Tokaji by the glass along with a well represented array of Mediterranean favourites, German and Austrian treats and New World show stoppers. Food is served until midnight Thursday to Saturday so take your time and explore with gusto.
Where: 18 Exchequer St, Dublin 2
More information: olesyaswinebar.com
This stunning restaurant exceeds expectations not just thanks to their contemporary food menus but also due to their thoughtful wine list mostly comprised of award-wining bottles from well-established regions: Californian Chardonnay, elegant Rioja, memorable Bordeaux and of course, Champagne.
Wine lovers wishing to deviate from the tipples they know and love are in good hands, as the staff is well versed in the art of wine pairing and will eagerly guide you out of the mainstream path if you have a thirst for discovery.
Where: 27 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin
More information: shelbournedining.ie
One made for wine people. In a menu with about 100 bottles, over 50 of them by the glass, no two wines are the same. They encourage you try variety as not only do they offer the standard 175 ml wine glass, but they also give you the option to go for smaller 125 ml serves which allow you to savour more.
Indulge in a selection that gives the spotlight to France and Italy’s finest, but allows the rest of Europe, the Americas and other wonders from the world’s Southern hemisphere their space to shine. If you fancy a taste of a wine that’s not by the glass, talk to them, as it is possible for their Coravin to come to the rescue.
Where: 19 Ranelagh, Dublin 6
More information: theexchequerwinebar.ie
A beacon of vinous pleasures in the heart of pint district, Piglet is the unpretentious and charming venue that you need to visit to experience a continental soirée of boutique wines, tapas and pasta, you might be forgiven if you forget for a moment you’re in Temple Bar.
Delight in what its owner, well known wine importer Enrico Fantasia, once described as “obscure fancy Italian stuff” and other sustainable, artisan bottles, mostly European. Don’t refrain yourself from talking to the staff, they’re happy to join the wine conversation and guide you through their favourites.
Where: Cow’s Lane, Temple Bar, Dublin 2
More information: facebook.com/PigletWineBar
Ireland’s only two Michelin starred restaurant is the place to go for flawless fine dining. Their contemporary cuisine with a fusion of Irish and classic French influences is paired masterfully by an encyclopedic wine menu that their team of sommeliers will gladly help you navigate.
You can opt to enjoy a wine paired degustation menu and simply put yourself in their skilled hands. With a restaurant cellar that has been lovingly constructed over the last 35 years, they’ve over 30,000 bottles of wine and surely, the perfect one for you.
Image by Barry McCall
Where: 21 Upper Merrion St, Dublin
More information: restaurantpatrickguilbaud.ie
This elegant venue offers a bright, airy and classic space to enjoy equally sophisticated dishes. Luxurious yet relaxed, it describes itself as “fine-dining without the stuffiness”, a welcome trait that is shared by their approach to wine.
Sommelier Victor Nedelea is credited for compiling a wine menu that artfully compliments the cuisine and regales oenophiles with rare and exclusive items as well as fine examples of well known styles. Of course they have a Coravin so don’t be shy if you don’t see your heart’s desire by the glass.
Where: 41 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin
More information: restaurantfortyone.ie
A wine list that begins with Champagne 1er Cru by the glass does justice to this restaurant’s polished dishes and lavish decor. Indulge in sought after vintages from France’s finest appellations or wander through their Francophile wine menu with generous inclusions of Burgundy and Bordeaux’s top spots.
You’ll also find worthy bottles from regions like Barolo, Rioja and Yarra Valley. Even their selection of house wine has been given love and effort: over 30 wines that offer a more than decent selection of mid-priced bottles from regions known as well as up and coming.
Where: Molesworth Court, School House Ln E, Dublin 2
More information: onepico.com
This stylish and friendly restaurant has earned a place in the hearts of food lovers with a soft spot for inviting terraces. Those quasi al fresco memories shall be enhanced by a considered selection of wines where options might not be counted by the hundreds, but have been chosen by a savvy team capable of crafting a varied line up that complements the place’s modern cuisine with Mediterranean and Irish influences.
Expect a mix and match by the glass of southern Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and Argentina.
Where: 26 Fitzwilliam Pl, Dublin
More information: sueseystreet.ie
This is an oasis for wine lovers in which you’ll find over 100 wines by the glass and about 500 different bottles. Their wine list will surprise you with wines you wouldn’t expect, specially by the glass, such as Sherry, British sparkling or less known wine producing countries like Macedonia or Slovenia. Of course, the best-sellers are also well represented.
Renown sommelier Ian Brosnan is to thank for such an eclectic array of bottles. Expect great food to match and occasional tastings and other wine events.
Where: 22 Ely Pl, Dublin 2
More information: elywinebar.ie
Widely acknowledged as one of the best restaurants in the country and holder of a Michelin star, the wine offer at Chapter One is worthy of its superb cuisine. Sommelier Ed Jolliffe has curated a collection of wines that focuses on organic and biodynamic producers. They also offer rare vintages and as other venues on this level, they have a Coravin to allow you a glass of outstanding bottles.
Expect a wine menu created to complement the food, with a notable inclination for France’s top terroirs but with plenty of representatives from other fine regions.
Where: 18-19 Parnell Square N, Rotunda, Dublin 1
More information: chapteronerestaurant.com
Etto’s daily changing, seasonal menu offers an interesting challenge when it comes to its wine list. Fortunately, their solution was brilliant: changing the “by the glass” options daily, to allow wine lovers to enjoy variety and allow for the options to suit the dishes of the day.
Their overall wine list is an homage to Italy’s diversity, from delicate Soave to serious Barolo and sparkling Franciacorta, complemented by a concise but smartly chosen range of bottles from the rest of Europe plus a handful of New World standouts.
Where: 18 Merrion Row, Dublin 2
More information: etto.ie
This highly anticipated opening had food lovers celebrating but it’s also great news for oenophiles. While dishes at Elaine Murphy’s latest venture channel Irish and British pub classics, the wine list looks to the Mediterranean, with the occasional German or Austrian bottle and New World treat.
Indulge in rich, intense reds and whites from the mouth-watering to the gloriously buttery. With over 100 bottles of red and more than 70 whites plus sparkling and fortified also on the list, you’ll find the perfect bottle every time.
Where: The Legal Eagle, 1/2 Chancery Place, Dublin 7
More information: thelegaleagle.ie
Gabriela’s passion for writing is only matched by her love for food and wine. Journalist, confectioner and sommelier, she fell in love with Ireland years ago and moved from Venezuela to Dublin in 2014.
Since then, she has written about and worked in the local food scene, and she’s determined to discover and share the different traditions, flavours and places that have led Irish food and drink to fascinate her.