You may or may not know that Clifden and nearby villages have some of the best dining options in Galway (or perhaps the best in Ireland?!). We’ve shared our ideal coffee-fuelled Connemara road trip with you, and our favourite food trucks for casual, quick eats – now it’s time for where to find great food in Connemara when it comes to restaurant/pub dining.
Honestly, we are spoiled for choice here – and if there is one thing we will not compromise on, it is quality, tasty and fresh food when we are dining out. If you’re out, go all out!
Here are 6 spots for great food in Connemara.
There have been many nights spent in Paddy Coynes – chilling beside the beautiful open fire of St Annes snug with a cold pint of Guinness in hand and summer evenings in their beer garden.
The best combination when it comes to pub visits, is when you can have all three of these in one spot: good Guinness, a cozy nook and hearty,delicious food. The chef Jack Duffy is a culinary genius, renowned for his seafood and seasonal specials. This is why we love Paddy Coynes, it ticks all the boxes!
Even if you aren’t interested in the cold, creamy pints of Guinness, or the general craic and cozy atmosphere – then just come for the food as that alone is worth the trip!
Of course a wine bar was the missing piece on the Clifden dining scene – and thankfully the Lamplight Wine Bar has come along to fill that void – and they are filling our fancy wine glasses with some of the world’s finest wines. Don’t know how to choose a good wine? Well the Lamplight team comes equipped with a professionally trained Sommelier, Anke (who is also the owner).
The lure of the lamplight doesn’t stop at it’s international selection of biodynamic and sustainable wines, their food is also fantastic – and the focus on top quality, sustainable goods extends to their food menu. Head chef Egon is a master smoker and the carefully curated menu is the perfect accompaniment to your bottle of choice.
Think seafood starter plates, fire-roasted pork belly, or a selection of cheese boards to share.
We adore this place, the atmosphere and the whole vibe! Clifden summers are made for wine tastings and cheese boards. If you want a dream weekend – why not join us for a Water and Wine weekend; which includes one nights accommodation in a local guest house, the Arch, carefully selected wine paired with a three course meal at the Lamplight Bar and a session of your choice to surf/coasteer/kayak/SUP on the Connemara coast. We are delighted to be teaming up with the Lamplight Wine Bar.
The Darcy 12 restaurant has been a staple on our dining-out list since it’s opening in 2017. Named after the founder of Clifden, John D’Arcy – it is an aptly named addition to the local food scene.
Keeping with the theme of our favourite eateries – they use fresh, local Connemara produce to create the plates of flavour that we adore. Choose from dishes filled with fresh seafood, local meat and homemade burgers that are sure to leave you coming back to try everything else on their menu.
This gem is located in the heart of Clifden, so it is the perfect spot to dine while staying close to the hub of Connemara action. Wonderful staff, perfect location and great food – what more do you want from an evening out on the town?
Outdoor dining, with views of the sea and set amongst the boating culture that pertains so much to a Clifden summer – is what Connemara eating is all about. I have such fond memories of eating outdoors, with views of the water during my many years in Connemara – so Baidin is a very welcome addition to the Clifden restaurant world. For the many who may not frequent a boat club usually, please make sure you do so for this little treat of a restaurant.
With an emphasis on serving dishes that are created using local ingredients, you are sure to experience Connemara on a whole new level as you savour the local flavours while soaking up the marina-esque feel, watching the evening sky come to a close.
If you haven’t been to Marconi restaurant, have you even had a true Clifden experience? This is one worthy of treating yourself to a night out with some fine dining – at a reasonable price.
A family-run restaurant, along with their hotel (Foyle’s hotel) and the Clifden night-life hot spot, Mullarkey’s.
The restaurant is famed for its creative meals, curated from local and seasonal produce – with an emphasis on fresh Irish seafood and traditional Irish dishes.
We come here for the food – as well as the décor and the excellent staff who ensure that your dining experience is the best it can be.
Monk fish, lamb shank and hake are some of the plates that make up their locally, and internationally, loved menu.
Be sure to pop into Mullarkey’s bar for a night cap after your meal!
If you would like to eat a delicious meal set within surrounds that are steeped in history – then Inagh Lodge might tickle your fancy, as well as whet your appetite. The original lodge was built in the 1880s and at one point was used as a fishing lodge that belonged to the Martin estate (the Richard Martin estate of Ballynahinch).
This is a magnificent location-dinner – come for the dinner, stay for the location. Offer yourself a special experience, take in some of the beauty that Connemara has to offer while dining on excellent, fresh food served to a high standard.
Expect fresh seafood, such as Killary lobster or Oysters with a Guiness shot and lemon. The menu has a wide variety of dishes for all tastes, and in our opinion is a must-visit when dining in Connemara.
Are you hungry yet? We hope you try out some of these (or all of these) fantastic spots for great food. We are surrounded by talented and passionate chefs, and restaurants who put so much time and care into creating memorable dining experiences using the best locally sourced, fresh food you can find!
If you are looking to add some activity to your next Connemara holiday, be sure get in touch – nothing like a session on the water or climbing to get the appetite going!