What is your favourite dish on Lil Portie’s menu and why?
The Saltfish fritters. They’ve been a big hit on the menus since I started sourcing it from Sustainable Seafood Ireland. Saltfish was a cheap and staple food in Jamaica given to the slaves as eating meat was forbidden. It’s a variation on the recipe my grandmother learned from her aunt which landed down to me. The variation in the recipe I use is only slight, I add fresh cod to the mixture to bump up the freshness and give two flavours of the same ingredient. The Salted cod almost has a cheesy texture to it and is so moreish that eating one is near impossible.
What would be your desert island meal? (Starter/Main/Dessert)
Just plantain and salt, Plantain, much like the potato is so versatile, Fry it, boil it, mash it, have it as a meal, have it on the side. If there was a Gun to my head choice of potato or plantain, the plantain wins. Not sure how I’d get myself into that position, however.
Ceviche, Ceviche Ceviche. Hopefully, on this island, they’ll have limes and a spear. Everything the body needs, Fresh fish cooked in lime with fresh herbs and sweet potato. Every time I eat the dish the simplicity in freshness and assembly always astounds me, When I lived in South America, One of my apartments was one deep in the heart of a Peruvian district with restaurants and street food at every corner. There's something about the touch of the person that prepares a simple dish that brings it to a whole new strata
Hook me with to a vat of Cheesecake (any kind) and leave me alone, Keep your fork, It will only slow me down
What is your favourite seasonal dish?
Irish Lamb, The arrival of Springtime is so hardwired into us that the natural celebration always mark the gathering. Eating lamb reminds me of the coming longer night and the of warmth summer months, and hopefully not have to turn the heating on until October
What drink would you pair with it?
I’ve grown very fond of Malbec over the recent years, For a Roast lamb, a pairing of a Malbec would be ideal to wash down all that springtime goodness.
What is your favourite restaurant in Dublin and why?
I love fresh Seasonal seafood. It's why I always find myself having solo meals in The Seafood Cafe. Favorite restaurants are a mixture of a few things like a banging menu, proximity, and familiarity.
What is your favourite dish in Dublin and why?
It’s a recent item on Dublin menus, open fire cooking has brought some great dishes to us, Irish beef over carefully tendered embers is always something to look out for
Who is your most hotly tipped young chef in Ireland today?
Not really new but still young, Grainne O Keefe, she’s a powerhouse that’s doing some remarkable things, from Clanbrassil to Bujo.
What is your favourite thing about Taste?
The festival atmosphere that passes around like a surge and people arriving with the intention of trying something new