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Our Latest Great Place To Eat - Kernel Bar & Kitchen

Our Latest Great Place To Eat - Kernel Bar & Kitchen

Tuesday 30 May 2017

Kernel Bar & Kitchen is located within the Kilkenny Inn on Vicar Street near Kilkenny’s famous St. Canice's Cathedral. We called in for lunch on the way up from Cork and, although the street is narrow, we could park virtually outside the door, and there's also a large car park behind the hotel. The vibe is retro urban funky with dangling lightbulbs, and walls papered with old Independent newspapers from the 1930s. It was rather amusing to see a large ad sporting “four charming creations” from McBirney’s fashion salon on Aston’s Quay, as well "Startling News from India” recounting Mahatma Gandhi’s arrest. I could have spent the day climbing up the walls reading the papers – but instead I snapped away with the iPhone!

An all day ‘Brunch & Bites’ menu of contemporary casual food was good value. Sandwiches included a ‘Tricolour’ number with halloumi, avocado, tomato and basil, and grilled chicken with tomato and brown sourdough. Salads were available in small or large sizes, including chilli and lime Toonsbridge halloumi super salad with sugar snap peas, butternut squash, roast barley, quinoa, tomato, fresh mint, dressed leaves and avocado dressing. In addition a lunch time express menu, from daily blackboard specials, offered the option of adding soup, salad, or a glass of wine.

We kicked off with a quite perfect ‘small’ salad of poached pear for Brendan, served in a chic contemporary blue bowl, with Cashel Blue cheese, candied walnut, beetroot crisps and a piquant dressing; and a deeply intense tomato and basil soup for me, served with a divine fruit and nut bread, both of which we thoroughly enjoyed, as Johnny Cash was belting out "Help me make it through the night"! Brendan moved on with a cracking succulent Angus beef burger, layered with smoked Gubbeen, and served with pickleslaw and house fries, which he made fast work of. The daily specials were salmon with sugar snaps, new potatoes, squash, mint raita and lime dressing; or, that which I chose, battered fish and ‘squids’– three fine pieces of hake and calamari, tweaked with segments of lemon and orange, and served with sweet chilli sauce and mayo, which I had with an ace super salad with broccoli and beans, instead of the billed chips. Sides – the Kernel bread tin, fries, creme fraiche chilli potatoes, super salad, seasonal veg or pickleslaw were available...

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