In one of my favorite seaside villages around the world, I recently discovered this elegant restaurant. Visit Malahide for the charming marina and scenic tidal basin, but plan a meal at Sale e Pepe to make the most of your visit to this enclave less than 20 minutes from Dublin airport.
I was absolutely amazed by the quality of the meal, and the service, in this quiet seaside town. The decor is casual, but elegant - with a wide array of candle-lit fixtures providing a unique ambiance. The menu is far ranging, with an emphasis on locally sourced ingredients.
For starters, I highly recommend the warm chicken and bacon salad - delicately tossed in a light tarragon and herb dressing. It is best described as gourmet comfort food! And I followed that with the absolutely stunning Baked Cod Filet encrusted by Crabmeat and Herbs. This extraordinary dish is served atop perfectly sauteed potatoes, resting in a delicate sherry and leek cream sauce. Wow.
I have enjoyed fresh seafood at the finest restaurants in the U.S. from Kennebunk, Maine to Charleston, South Carolina, and onward to San Francisco, California. This dish, so carefully prepared and with the fresh ingredients so subtly crafted, would rank on par with any meal that I have enjoyed in most of the major cities in the world. Don't miss it.
For the finale I asked the server for the most unique and characteristic dish available for dessert. She recommended the Banoffee - a dish available throughout England and the British Isles. This version was sublime, with the bananas freshly sliced and layered between a freshly baked shortbread and just-prepared whipped cream, then surrounded by a lovely homemade caramel. Characteristic, indeed, of the careful attention to detail within this kitchen.
So...what are you waiting for? Go and enjoy this and/or the other items on the menu that are available from within this highly skilled kitchen - and surrounded by the peaceful town of Malahide.
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