A few Weeks back, I did a post about and highlighted some of my favourite pizza places in Dublin. Since then I’ve visited a few more and want to add to that post a little.
In particular I want to mention two restaurants; one fantastic and the other a bit of a let down. I like to finish my posts on an upside whenever possible so I’ll start with the disappointment.
Milano was the most recent addition to my summer long search for good Italian style pizza in Ireland. I should point out 2 things before I go too far into this, the first is that it was the restaurant in Temple Bar that we visited and secondly we were there as a result of a special offer they had advertised, which allowed us a Pizza for €0.15 with every main course ordered.
The initial impression was quite good as the restaurant was busy when we arrived and even though we had not booked in advance I was pleasantly surprised that we were seated immediately. We were given menus and allowed plenty of time to make our choices but not so much as to make us feel neglected. Our orders were taken, two starters, two main courses (both pizzas) and two drinks, a Peroni for myself and wine for Elly.
It was when the drinks arrived things started to go wrong. Our waiter poured my beer at the table which would have been nice except for it was a terrible pour and if that wasn’t bad enough the beer had only been in a cooler for a few minutes before serving, judging by the temperature, but it was drinkable and I wouldn’t even be mentioning it if the rest of the service had been good.
The starters weren’t exactly earth shattering and to be honest given the descriptions on the menu I was expecting more. Then there was the extended wait between courses. During which I spotted the carton of bechamel sauce in the kitchen area of the restaurant. Now call me a food snob, but if I’m in a restaurant I don’t expect to be eating processed food!
When our pizzas did arrive my regular pizza was small and unusually thick based for an Italian pizza, Elly’s thin base option was rolled so thin that it couldn’t support the moisture of the sauce and was a bit soggy and limp while somehow managing to be difficult to cut and chewy.
We were availing of a rather good special offer which meant that at least we didn’t over pay, but having now sampled Milano’s fair I can say with confidence that there are at least three other restaurants (Bar Italia, Botticelli and Le Med) within 100 yards that will serve you better pizza and for less than the regularly priced menu in Milano.
So that’s enough about them, the other restaurant that we visited recently was Pregos in the Ballyowen Shopping centre, Lucan. As they don’t seem to have a website they can be contacted on 01 610 9119 (Location Map).
I’ve heard a lot about Pregos and have been eager to try it out as it’s close to home and has a good reputation locally. From the outside you could be forgiven for thinking that Pregos was a pizza take-away/delivery place on closer inspection you see that there is a restaurant upstairs, so in we went and up the stairs to one side of the counter where we were greeted by an Italian waiter and cosy little restaurant space with seating for about 40 people.
After a very brief wait while a table was cleared for us we were seated. We were not made to feel rushed at any time and the only hitch we encountered was with the bottle of wine we initially ordered as it was out of stock but a very pleasant alternative was suggested (with a little bit of local knowledge from our waiter sealing the deal) and greatly enjoyed. The service was quick and attentive without making us feel rushed at all. Both our starters and main course were fantastic. The pasta was great and the presentation simple but effective.
While we were enjoying our meal I spotted some Pizzas being delivered to other tables and was a little disappointed that I had decided to be a grown up and order pasta instead, not that there was anything wrong with the pasta just that the pizzas looked that good.
As we left the restaurant that evening there was a queue of people on the stairs waiting to be seated and as we walked home I realised that at no point had any seat in the restaurant been empty for more than a few minutes in the time we were there, and I fully understand why, the food is simply superb.
The following evening neither myself or Elly felt like cooking so we telephoned a take-away order in and drove round to collect our pizzas. They really didn’t disappoint, the bases were thin, crisp and a little bubbly with really fresh toppings and cooked quickly in a pizza oven. The only negative I can give is that the Pizza oven was not wood fired which really does add the final touch to the flavour but even without this Pregos’ pizzas are exceptional. If you happen to find yourself in Lucan then do treat yourself, you really won’t regret it.