Browsing articles tagged with "Brooks Hotel Archives - I Love Saturday"
Feb 21, 2014

Jasmine Bar – Unknown Pleasure

Brooks Hotel on Drury Street looks terribly unassuming from the outside. You’ve probably walked past it a million times. But step inside & you’ll find the Jasmine Bar, an oasis of calm in the city. It’s been a secret haunt of mine for years. Lunch, afternoon tea, a cheeky Tom Collins. We’ve done family dinner in Francesca’s Restaurant on many occasions too. Brooks is a hidden gem, in the middle of town.

Not being a seen-to-be-seen kind of place, the Jasmine Bar offers the sort of peace & quiet to sit back & relax. With Ma & Pa just back from their hols, it was the perfect spot to settle in & hear all about it. We ordered off the lunch menu. Caesar salad for me & Greek salad for Herself. A turkey & stuffing sandwich with a cup of tomato soup for Dad. And we shared some wonderfully robust potato wedges.

The measured service at Brooks is luxe, not lax. Staff are highly trained, lending a Continental feel of being looked after. We could use more of it in Dublin. Everything was laid gently on our table, with a smile. The food is simple, but something to write home about. Award winning chef, Patrick McLarnon, is the main man at Francesca’s. His use of local artisan ingredients extends to the Jasmine Bar.

My Caesar was fresh & crunchy with lovely dark Romaine leaves. Ma’s Greek was just as well put together. We’re salad experts, y’know. We liked these mucho! Dad’s sambo went down a treat & his soup was nice & tangy. The menu has a good choice of sandwiches – tomato, mozzarella & basil, McConnells Organic smoked Irish salmon – & the hearty Brooks burger or a beef & Guinness stew.

If you want to linger on after lunch, then you’re in the right place. The Jasmine Bar is one of the best whiskey bars in the country, offering a Whiskey Tasting Experience for groups. Any wonder Madre loves this joint… The cocktail menu offers indulgent tipples too. If you’re looking for a bit of fun though, check out Brooks Private Cinema Club. Really rather cool. Great films & better food than any Cineplex.

Jasmine Bar, Brooks Hotel, Drury Street, Dublin 2 / www.brookshotel.ie

Mar 22, 2013

The Loft Market – Secret Treasure

Powerscourt Townhouse is one the hidden gems of Dublin. Tucked away between South William Street and Clarendon Street, it’s a great showcase for alternative Irish retailers. I’ve always been a boutique shopper and with Grafton Street becoming ever more commercial, I find Powerscourt the perfect refuge from the ubiquitous faceless multinationals. And it’s the home of my fave treasure trove The Loft Market.

Last week the Madre and me were enjoying a loaf about town. First off a Tom Collins in Brooks Hotel on Drury Street, then to The Loft Market to see what we could see. Jean Cronin Vintage had got in some old skool wedding dresses – don’t get any ideas! – that Mama simply had to see. We had lots of fun picking from a cute 60s silk maxi, an 80s lace Madonna number and a 70s boho broderie Anglaise.

Frolics aside, Jean Cronin Vintage always serves my sweet shopping tooth. I picked up a buff silk 40s style dress, an electric blue embroidered number and a gorgeous little beaded sequin cardi. Those, like me, who don’t do high street fashion – get here! Mama is mad for anything Irish and handmade and her eclectic taste was met with a pink Heather Finn scarf. The girls working here give great style advice too.

The layout of The Loft Market allows customers to mix and match clothes, jewellery and accessories. It’s easy to while away an hour, acting the magpie at Chupi, Perk Up Vintage, Aliquo, B Fashion Design and Lark Vintage amongst others. Large dressing rooms with multiple mirrors add to the “dressing up box” feel of the place. For a girl who loves her shopping, The Loft Market is chic, fun and stress-free.

The Loft Market, Powerscourt Centre, 59 South William Street, Dublin 2 / www.powerscourtcentre.com