Another new kid in town, restaurants in Dublin seem to be popping up at record speed all over the city. Not better example of this then the food mecca that is George’s Street. Competition is fierce here with pretty much every cuisine on offer from 777, San Lorenzos to Rustic Stone. So what ‘s left to fill the gap? Apparently a Scandinavian/Asian influence, well that has now been plugged in the form of Soder and Ko. A very unique offering; of a cool chilled out bar, mixed with smooth sounds and exceptional “grazing” plates from the former head chef at the Michelin starred Cliff House Hotel. Kwanghi Chan has left the Michelin Star dream in Waterford and moved onto something completely left field.
First thing that will strike you is as you walk in the unassuming front door is the vastness of the space. This is a huge venue, with dining booths dotted throughout and a large focal bar, well stocked with craft beers and cocktails. Upstairs there is ample room for private parties, a second smaller bar and hip fully covered, heated terrace with a very bared backed “Ikea” feel. Warm and cosy with tunes piped outside, a real smoker’s nirvana!
We headed in on a Sunday night for a 9.oopm booking and were delighted to see the place so alive and buzzing. Word has clearly spread that Söder+Ko is the new place to be. While waiting for our table we headed to the bar and ordered a couple of “64& Söder’s” a signature cocktail of spiced wood and citrus old fashioned. Delicious smokey and maple flavours from an excellent bargirl with fine mixing skills. That’s the beauty of this venue you can pop in in the morning for a coffee and cinnamon bun, grab a quick and healthy lunch, soak up all the atmosphere at dinner time or just enjoy a beer.
Seated in a large, plush leather booth to the front of Söder+Ko our server explained how the menu works with the idea being you select several small plates to share and enjoy a bit of everything. With that in mind we order a decent bottle of Verdejo which seemed to compliment the light asian flavours well. First couple of dishes arrived pretty quick, just as well as we were famished. The sharing menu is well priced with an option of 3 plates and a side for €25 or 5 for €45. Five it was so, first up was the a to die for Roast Chinese Duck Steamed Bun with Asian Salad and Hoi Sin Sauce. A super dish of succulent, generous pieces of shredded duck in a light and fresh bun, why or why did we only order one! Two sides arrived with this consisting of a Rice Pot of fluffy white jasmine rice and flavourful Sweet Potato Fries with lightly grated parmesan and seasoned with rosemary sea salt, could have easily grazed on these all evening.
One of the positive thing about small plates is it generally encourages picky eaters to be a bit more adventurous and get out of their comfort zone a bit. You cannot come here and not try Kwanghi’s Dim Sum. His ability to transform simple dishes into a plate of pure “deliciousment” is something that has to be admired; the King Prawn Dumplings were pretty, perfect little parcels of juiciness and the Pork and Shrimp in winton pastry were a worthy rival.
Last up was a Baked Hake with Ginger, Spring Onion, Ponzu, Miso Mayo and Glass Noodles. A tempting dish showcasing the skills of their culinary director, expertly executed.The Charred Peppered Fillet, Sticky Rice, Quail Egg Yolk, Mustard Cress sounded too good to pass and boy was that the right decision. If you dine in Söder+Ko order this and you will not be disappointed. The sticky rice combined with a sliver of the beef and the quail’s egg is a heavenly combination.
All in all the bill came to €82 including the bottle of Verdejo priced at €33. Food, atmosphere and value for money are 10 out of 10.
This is a Trendsetting Taste we highly recommend.
64 South Great George’s Street
T: 01 478 1590
Keith & Jules Mahon are the founders of TheTaste. We want TheTaste to be a culinary kaleidoscope to champion every taste, food, wine, cocktails, whiskey, etc. We are delighted to be part of such a creative and fast moving industry and are very passionate about sharing with you our unique journey around Ireland finding the best culinary hotspots.