After an extremely distressing trip to the movies, during which I may have asked.. nay, begged, my partner if we could please, PLEASE leave, I was seeking extremely comforting food. Anything to wipe the memory of the self-indulgent, awkward, badly written, pile of utter tosh that was ‘Tiny Furniture’ from my mind.
We gravitated towards Russo’s, an Italian restaurant. It had a reasonable early bird menu, looked relatively clean and it being 5.30 on a Sunday, was almost completely empty.
Seated by the window, I was able to gaze at Crackbird across the road, judging with a mighty force.
Not quite as harshly as I was judging the lukewarm water served to us, however; why is there an aversion to ice in restaurants?
When I order tap water, I don’t actually mean JUST tap water.
Do I need to specifically state that I would like it cold, rather than room temperature?
Is this not what the majority of people would expect?
Should it not be a given that one would like a refreshing, cooling, beverage when requesting water, rather one that resembles, to a disconcerting level, old bathwater?
Sort it out, please.
We ordered starters; I do regret not ordering the bruschetta mista, but I couldn’t work out what ‘aubergine cream’ could be, and decided I may be better off not knowing.
Two pizza bases arrived, with garlic, rosemary and sea salt, which was weird, as we had both ordered focaccia, with garlic, rosemary and sea salt. Confused, but hungry, we tucked in. The bread itself was lovely, if it hadn’t been hidden by a forest of rosemary – once most of this had been scraped onto my plate, I very much enjoyed my faux-focaccia, smothered in garlic mayonnaise.
The friend, who lived through the Tiny Furniture débâcle with me, was less than impressed, as she had ordered a pizza for main course, and would now be eating at least half her weight in carbs in one sitting. I promised to roll her home.
Then, my fillet steak arrived.
I forgot anything and anyone else existed after one bite of the butter-soft, cooked to perfection, 6oz piece of beef on my plate. Under seasoned, which I didn’t appreciate, but bang on medium-rare, which I very much did. One of the few places I have ever received a steak cooked correctly, which is a serious achievement in itself.
Red-pink, incredibly tender, with very a slight smokey charcoal crisp on the outside; magnificent!
The garlic and rosemary potatoes that accompanied it were close to rubbery, and the greasy wilted spinach was a gloopy mess below them, but, to be honest, I could not care less – I was so desperately sad when that steak ended, words cannot even begin to paint the picture.
The loss of my steak still ringing heavy in my heart, I turned to my companion, and started to eye up her pizza. Generously, she allowed me to save her from herself, and eat some. The base, slightly doughy, was exactly how I like it, and the tang in the tomato sauce was quite nice. It had the exact right amount of cheese, but it was nothing special. I do accept that it is difficult to make a great margherita, as it is designed to be bland, but some flavour really wouldn’t have gone astray.
At this point, the table of six behind us, who were getting progressively drunker throughout the.. very early evening.. with shots of limoncello and multiple bottles of wine, requested a song. The waitress obliged. The table started singing, loudly.
Not one of them knew the words, but they didn’t appear to notice.
Wisely, we decided to take our leave.
Too long, didn’t read?
Adequate fare, apart from the delicious steak that is just too good to pass up. I will have to return, and I will request a side of steak to go with my steak, to replace the potatoes and sad spinach.
I’ll be bringing my own ice though and, as I’m a generous soul, a picture of focaccia for the chef.
2 starters, 2 main courses, 3 soft drinks – €50
Russo’s, Dame Street Dublin