When in Dublin, don’t be surprised if your Irish coffee is served with a cup of hot water, a slender packet of instant coffee, a dollop of whipped cream, and a tiny bottle of Jameson. Such a thing happened to me on the last night of a two week trip to Ireland, in a fancy castle near St. Anne’s Park, abloom with the smell of a million roses. Trips like that you don’t forget, and the same goes for the deconstructed Irish staple: the quintessential Irish coffee.
Sometimes reflecting on a great trip can spawn a craving, and there’s nothing like breaking through the dense foam of an Irish coffee. At Macallans Public House, a Best New Restaurant for 2016, the hand-whipped creamy head acts like a catalyst, connecting whiskey and eye-opening coffee to your soul. Of all the places to get a stellar version, it’s no shock that an Irish-style pub would nail it so perfectly, and does so for a simple $8, or if you prefer, $1 during Sunday brunch next to a sheep herding full Irish breakfast (9am to noon).
The cascading head floats down gently like a fresh Guinness being poured, which by the way, also happens at the bar. Hints of brûlée hit the nose as the foam meets hot liquid, backed by easy-drinking Irish whiskey. Don’t be surprised if someone tries to kiss the foam off your upper lip! You never know, the luck of the Irish is strong at Macallans.
While there, you may also find comfort in Euro trad dishes like the Fish & Chips, whose crust is just thin and crisp enough to act as a shell, allowing the fish to gently steam itself inside to perfection. Chef Roman is also adventurous, so don’t feel bad ordering East LA nachos, or perhaps an Argentinian Gaucho Sandwich.