This week both Tom Doorley and TheTaste had the pleasure of sampling Conor Dempsey’s Amuse on Dawson Street. Tom popped in for a bit of lunchtime indulgence and we decided to try out the 5 course “Spring” Tasting menu priced at €65pp to get a true appreciation of all Amuse has to offer.
Lunch Review – This is what Tom Doorley had to say:
Last September, I reviewed Amuse on Dublin’s Dawson Street, and was immediately enchanted both by the quality of the cooking and by the refreshingly new approach to flavours. I forgot to mention in my Irish Daily Mail piece that I was astonished to see so few people eating there at lunchtime.
But, I kicked off by saying:
“Conor Dempsey did a fine job in bringing a bit of modern flair to classic French cooking at Dax but he is now doing his own thing at Amuse, a tiny restaurant in the heart of town. It’s fashionably grey outside, all very cool and modern and understated.”
“His own thing is something you’re much more likely to see in Paris than here. He brings Asian influences to bear on the kind of meticulous, fiddly cooking that (a) you would never try at home and (b) that floats Michelin’s boat. It’s very much a first for the capital.”
I returned recently, at Conor’s invitation, to taste my way through a range of new dishes and all I can say is that the brilliance I enjoyed in September 2014 has risen now to absolutely stellar heights.
The style – light, delicate, low on carbs, flavour-driven, miniature pictures on plates – has intensified and the emphasis has switched to a more consistently Japanese accent in the cooking. This is reflected in elements like hamachi, the amberjack, a tuna-like fish from the Sea of Japan, served as sashimi, yuzu, the rare and expensive citrus fruit and special aged soya sauces, all imported directly by Amuse. To name but a few.
The attention to detail is like that of a watchmaker and many of the dishes have a jewel-like perfection of design, flavour and texture. Even the carrots are cooked, not in water, but in concentrated carrot juice. Yes, that level of obsessional brilliance.
Even the chocolate at dessert has a savoury umami intensity that’s like nothing else I’ve tasted in Ireland.
Is this the most exciting food in the capital right now? There’s no doubt about it. And the lunch menu is a ridiculously cheap €24 for two courses, €29 for three.
I’ll conclude the same way as I did my original review:
“In a word? Brilliant.”
5 Course Tasting Menu Review – This is what TheTaste had to say:
You can’t really top what Tom had to say, Amuse is a very unique proposition. The passion for creating dishes that are fresh and original shines through in every plate. Manager Yann explains in great detail the characteristics of each dish created by Conor and the team. As Amuse is also very passionate about their wine list, we decided to opt for the wine pairing from their sommelier Lena priced at €40. In particular the Domaine Thibert Père et Fils 2013 Macon-Fuissé was a superb wine which blended deliciously with the Marinated Mackerel and Carlingford oyster. Unlike any oyster tried before this unusual little dish had the most beautiful apple “sorbet” placed within which has swayed a dislike for this shellfish completely.
The stand out dish of the evening would have to be the Anjou Pigeon, Shiro Miso Glazed Aubergine, Tamarind and Kombuncha, stunning presentation and bursting with gamey flavours. We couldn’t let the review end without mentioning the three year aged soy sauce sourced directly from Japan, which was served with a delicate piece of Atlantic Cod, delicious !
Our dinner including the wine pairings and two coffees came to €220, a fine dining experience that awakens every taste, worth every cent.
This is an Exceptional Taste we cannot recommend enough.
Photo Gallery of 5 course Dinner Spring Menu & Amuse Bouches
22 Dawson Street
T: +353 1 639 4889