The Midlands Restaurants

The Midlands town of Birr may be known as the "belly button of Ireland" because of its central location, not because this region is regarded as one of the cuisine centers of Ireland. No matter that Ireland's best restaurant (according to some)—Neven Maguire's MacNean's, near Cavan town—is in the Midlands, nor the fact that the region is also home to Wineport Lodge, Ireland's first "wine hotel," you'll find that most restaurants here are simple eateries, ranging in price from inexpensive to moderate.

Nevertheless, there are those restaurants that will entice you right in off the street, especially those offering beef—Mullingar, in the center of the Midlands, is the beef capital of Ireland—and fish specialties, as the many lakes and rivers of the region provide an abundance of fresh salmon and trout (in fact, since no place is more than an hour and a half from the sea, expect to find lots of fresh ocean fish).

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  • 1. Emma's Café and Deli

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    A tempting array of both savory and sweet delights are on display at this central daytime café and deli counter. Nourishing soups at lunchtime, such...Read More

  • 2. Flynn's Bar & Lounge

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    In the center of town, Flynn's is worth visiting to appreciate its light and spacious Victorian-style design. The lunch menu includes sandwiches, salad platters, and...Read More

  • 3. Gate Lodge

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    "Lovage at the Gate Lodge," as it's known locally, overlooks the river and serves the best coffee in town. Pastries, wraps, baps, and burgers are...Read More

  • 4. Kin Khao Thai Restaurant

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    Many regard this as the leading Thai restaurant in the Midlands, if not all of Ireland. Adam Lyons runs a slick first-floor operation in a...Read More

  • 5. Relish

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    Portlaoise's secret is now unleashed: Monday is half-price night at Relish and if you can plan your visit for that day be advised to make...Read More

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