Homegrown chic is the theme of Dublin’s Creative Quarter, also known as the city's “hipster triangle”. Its streets are packed with the country’s newest, most forward-thinking food and design. Among them:
Jo’Burger, the always-packed epitome of the new Dublin cool, may sport picnic-style tables and jam jars of spiked house-made lemonade, but it also serves reliably delicious Charolais dry aged burgers in slightly bonkers renditions. Try the Ikqezi, adorned with caramelized chili banana, bacon and goat cheese. 4/5 Castle Market.
Coffee and design aficionados alike flock to buzzy café Kaph, where artisanal Has Bean coffees fuel conversation on the Scandinavian-influenced ground floor. Upstairs, connected by staircase and enormous vertical blackboard, is a more tranquil space that hosts pop-up artist residencies and events. 31 Drury St.
Quirky gifts and housewares designed and/or made in Ireland are on offer at Designist, where fun meets practical in pieces like the mix-and-match Allium lampshades, which dangle like colorful jellyfish. Most items are priced under €100, so pick up a handful of souvenirs, like Fiona Snow’s playful wooden versions of the classic Irish claddagh ring. 68 S. Great Georges St.
The latest from Dublin restaurateur John Farrell, Super Miss Sue is a stripped-down dining room serving superb local seafood, like the tempura-style Carlingford oysters with potato foam, leek and smoked haddock oil. If you’re in a hurry, grab gussied-up fish and chips to go from Cervi, the heavily stylized “chipper” next door. Units 2/3, Drury St. Car Park.
Murphy’s, a cheerful ice cream shop with an unmissable blue exterior, defies the gloomy Dublin weather with inventive, “only in Ireland” flavors - the toasted Irish oats and the brown bread are particularly addictive. This creamy, all-natural ice cream is made with milk from Kerry cows, hand-scraped vanilla beans and salt from the Dingle seaside. 27 Wicklow St.
Clare Grennan and Laura Caffrey opened a permanent location for the Irish Design Shop in 2013, with a ground floor space showcasing local design wares and metalwork studios on the upper floors. Especially tempting are the handmade ceramic jugs from County Cork’s Dunbeacon Pottery, but creative types should sign up for a jewelry making workshop - couples can design and craft their own wedding rings. 41 Drury St.