SUPER MISS SUE
2-3 Drury Street
Phone: 01 679 9009
One of the coolest places in town, Super Miss Sue utilises a long, shallow site and amounts to a brilliant place in which to eat seafood, watch Dublin go by and have paths cross. It’s also the city’s best fish and chipper.
I’m not in the habit of reviewing restaurants when they have just opened. It’s not fair. But there was something about Super Miss Sue that prompted me to depart from the habits of a lifetime and get in there ahead of the posse of critics and bloggers. So, on my first visit I rolled up at Super Miss Sue (I was worried when Googling that name, but I didn’t have to trawl through any dubious sites to find it) within a mere 48 hours of it’s having opened its doors. And wrote about it because I loved it right away. That’s a measure of how good it is.
I love the fact that this is a restaurant (actually, strictly speaking a café) in which everything is done from scratch. If you see a food services van outside, it’s just delivering olive oil and dry goods.
I love the fish and chips and I adore the serried ranks of Campari bottles high above the bar and the way they are back-lit. Oh, that intimate pink glow! I loved the tiles on the façade, the 1930s-style steel windows, the high ceiling and the friendly staff.
I love the fact that serial restaurateur John Farrell (who has, inter alia, the uber-fashionable 777 just round the corner) has spent eye-watering amounts of money on this project.
I even love the fact that Super Miss Sue feels like a certain kind of restaurant that you find in London and to some extent in New York. In that sense, it’s pretty much a first for Dublin.
It reminds me, in a curious way, of the Bibendum oyster bar in the glorious Michelin building on Fulham Road but I find that John Farrell and I share a mutual passion for another London establishment, the brilliant tapas bar that is Barrafina on Frith Street in Soho (and now in Covent Garden). And while Super Miss Sue is an original, I can see elements of that estimable establishment coming through.
The food is simple. They take superb seafood and do very little to it. Oysters come with various dressings, some classic, some clever and well judged. When things are deep-fried, they are encased in the lightest, most delightful batter. The chips are outstanding. Grilled prawns make me want to nibble my fingers to the bone.
The wine list is bold and smart and fairly cutting edge for Dublin. German Riesling is not regarded as off-piste.
The immediate area is fragrant with the scent of fish and chips frying in the finest lard, imported from Belgium, in the interconnecting take-way that is named Cervi after Dublin’s first chipper which appeared in the city (on what is now Pearse Street) a century ago.
Different? Yes, it’s that. And a lot more besides. I don’t spend enough time there, of course. This is because I have to go and review other restaurants.