VFI Members Feature In Ireland’s Top 20 Gastropubs

VFI members featured in a recent article  ‘Ireland’s Top 20 Gastropubs’ by Lucinda O’Sullivan, one of Ireland’s most widely-read food critics. Lucinda’s top 20 gastropubs ‘for feeding the flock’ appeared in The Sunday Independent’s, Life Magazine.

Lucinda investigates some of the best gastropubs where you and the whole family can dine out this summer. From high end bar food to Michelin worthy artworks, Lucinda says these top 20 pubs have ‘something to please every family member’.

Here’s a list of the 11 VFI members who were featured:

1. The Ballymore Inn, Eustace, Co. Kildare 

Ballymore Inn opened their doors 16 years ago and stand by a philosophy that the best food comes from carefully selected ingredients and simple ideas.

Lucinda says the ‘excellent inn is superbly popular with tourist and natives alike, offering really great grub in a chic setting’.

2. The Rafter Dempsey’s, Kilkenny City

Based in the heart of Kilkenny city The Rafter Dempsey’s combines old world charm with a modern twist. Open for food 7 days a week, Rafter Dempsey’s offers great food and an ‘legendary brunch’ menu.


3. Mannion’s Pub, New Ross, Co. Wexford

Owners and VFI members, Emmet & Lisa Hall according to Lucinda, ‘have made a name for themselves in New Ross, with good food and craft beers’. The whole team at Mannion’s have the common aim of creating a gastropub where service, quality of produce, value for money and consistency is the main focus.

4. McCarthy’s Pub, Fethard, Co. Tipperary

Established by Richard McCarthy in the 1850’s McCarthy’s Hotel provided the services of a spirit merchant, restaurant, hotel, undertaker, draper, grocer, baker, hackney service, glass, delph and china shop.

Lucinda says:

”McCarthy’s of Fethard, Co. Tipperary, has great grub and buckets of character. They’ll wine you, dine you and even bury you!”

5. The Bulman, Kinsale, Co. Cork

Toddies at the Bulman down in west Cork is well known for their seafood offering, encouraging people to come far and wide. Lucinda describes it as ‘Idyllic, eating at its best’.


6. An Súgán Restaurant, Clonakilty, Co. Cork

An Súgán Seafood Bar & Restaurant has become synonymous with West Cork and Clonakilty. The offer an extensive menus with locally sourced incredients. They offer something delicious for every taste and budget, from An Súgán seafood pie to a Ballyburden steak sandwich or our wide selection of homemade desserts.

7. Hayes’ Bar & Kitchen, Glandore, Co. Cork

Hayes’ Bar & Kitchen in Glandore is re-known for Chef David’s famous curry’s. Being a small artisan restaurant they source all ingredients as much as possible from local suppliers.

8. O’Neills The Point, Co. Kerry

O’Neills The Point is a family run bar and has been in the O’Neill family since the 1800’s.

Lucinda refers to it as, ‘A moviesque location, crab claws the size of your first, great pints, and friendly folk behind the bar’.

9. Vaughan’s Anchor Inn, Liscannor, Co. Clare 

Vaughan’s has retained its old world character and charm with a traditional old style shop at the front of the bar.

Lucinda says it is the perfect mix of ‘old meeting the new’.

10.  The Locke Bar, Limerick City

Overlooking the Shannon waters, The Locke Bar is a historical Limerick City, gastropub well know for its seafood and O’Hara’s ale-battered market fish and chips.

11. Hargadon Bros, Sligo

Just off Sligo main shopping street, Hargadon Bros gastropub according to Lucinda is ‘a delightful step back in time, expect when it comes to its great grub, which is right on the nose.’