At a recent event (an Irish whiskey tasting, presented by Jameson Irish Whiskey....what, did you think I was going to turn that down?) at Fado Irish Pub, I was lucky enough to get to sample specialties from their new menu.
I have always thought of Fado as a place to drink and hear Irish music (of which I am very fond), rather than as a destination restaurant. As the folks at Fado themselves have often joked, “One never says, 'Hey- tonight should we do sushi, Italian or Irish?'”. This new menu could change all that. Everything I tasted was impressive. To begin with, a full page of the menu is devoted to chips, or as we call them here in America, fries. Fado has instituted a “Chip Shop”, where diners can customize their chips in a number of remarkable ways. Chips can either be Thick cut or Thin cut, served with your choice of seven sauces (including Guiness Mayonnaise, Red Chili Aoili, BBQ Sauce and Curry Sauce), or they can be served topped. The toppings are especially wonderful: Fresh Rosemary and Parmesan, Black Pudding and Chimichurri, Harp Lager Cheese Sauce and Bacon, and Pulled Lamb and Peppercorn Sauce. Fado has also embraced the Irish creation, “Boxty”. Boxty is best described as a potato crisp; a sort of flat, fried potato bread, perfect for dipping. One of the new dishes is Cheese Dip and Boxty Wedges, which is not unlike an purely Irish queso experience, really marvelous. ($8.95)
Boxty is also topped with smoked salmon, capers, light horseradish sauce and red onion to make Smoked Salmon Bites ($8.95). I can’t imagine a better base than Boxty for these delectable morsels. The fried potato and smoked salmon were absolutely harmonious, perfectly matched, the warm and crunchy Boxty accenting the chilled, smoky salmon. But the best was saved for last: Bleu Cheese Lamb Sliders($10.95). On a soft slider bun, tender lamb is topped with caramelized onions and bleu cheese, then served with a side of lamb au jus for dipping. I could happily have eaten a dozen, and it wasn't just the whiskey talking.
If you haven’t had dinner at Fado in a few years, it is definitely time to go back. This Sunday, Fado will be holding their biggest St. Patrick’s Day Party to date! The doors will open at 9 am. An outdoor street festival will start at noon, with two stages featuring live music from ESPADA, Mysterious Ways, Traveler, The Enemies, Flash Point, Raising Jane, The Tea Merchants, and Sean Orr!
Fado Irish Pub, 214 West 4th St., (512) 457-0172, www.fadoirishpub.com
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday: 11:15am - 2am everyday Saturday/Sunday: Open early - 2.15am
Kitchen Hours: Monday - Thursday: Full Menu until 10:30pm Friday: Full menu until 10:30pm, Apps only 10:30pm - midnight Saturday: Full Brunch Menu until 3pm, Full menu until 10:30pm, Apps only 10:30pm - midnight Sunday: Full Brunch Menu until 3pm, Full menu until 10:30pm
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