I didn’t intend to have lunch at Bibi’s last week but, following a series of unfortunate events, we were fortunate to end up eating here. Bibi’s is situated on Emorville Avenue, off the South Circular Road not far from Leonard’s Corner. I haven’t been on Emorville Avenue since I was seventeen years old when I visited some old school pals who shared a flat there when they started working in the Civil Service. The area is more gentrified now and it appears to be an owner/occupier neighbourhood.
We almost missed this place (which features in The Dubliner – Best 100 Restaurants) as we pulled up outside Dolls clothing shop. But my sharp eyed niece noticed the small sign for Bibi’s. I parked and we went in. There is outside seating available but the weather was decidedly dodgy so we opted to eat indoors. As luck would have it there was a table free and we squeezed ourselves in. Bibi’s is a bijou establishment and space is of a premium. The waitress brought us a photocopied, handwritten menu which was dated suggesting that the menu changes daily. I ordered a butternut squash salad and my niece, having first enquired if there was any wheat free bread (there wasn’t) , ordered risotto with pancetta, parmesan and pear. She asked the waitress not to include the rocket which was on the menu.
We didn’t have to wait too long for our food but it seemed like an age only because I was absolutely ravenous. The dishes arrived and my colourful salad was stacked high in the bowl. My niece’s risotto looked pale in comparison. Indeed it was pale because it didn’t have the uplifting splash of green that the rocket would have supplied. My salad was, as Jedward might say, “OMG Awesome”. There was sun-dried tomatoes, feta cheese, plenty of pecan nuts, salad leaves and, of course, the butternut and dressing. Each mouthful was a burst of flavour and no two mouthfuls were the same. The risotto tasted great too.
The Bill came to €26.40 which isn’t cheap for lunch. Then again this was no ordinary lunch, this was an excellent lunch. We had a lovely meal, the waitress was friendly and she apologised profusely about the lack of wheat-free bread when we went to pay our bill. This tiny venue can probably seat about twenty-four patrons, inside and out, so I wouldn’t expect them to carry specialty foods.
There was a lovely array of desserts and cakes that we were too full to tackle. I think I will be back for afternoon tea sometime. Yummy!