YOU have to admire a man who knows how to handle bankers. Marco Pierre White is one such – the fiery chef once ejected 54 bastions of the banking system from his London restaurant because they asked for chips.
For that alone, the Irish will always have a soft spot for the Michelin-star chef. Which is just as well, because Marco, who has a restaurant on Dawson Street with his Irish business partner Geraldine Fitzpatrick, is opening another steakhouse in Dublin at the end of February. He has taken over the premises of The Old Courtyard in Donnybrook and plans to turn it into a 150-seater state-of-the-art eaterie.
It will surely give Johnny Ronan, a regular in the Dawson Street eaterie, a new place to chow down. Not that he is short of options. The bearded boulevardier was in Ann Marie Nohl's Xpresso Bar Cafe on Mary's Road two or three times last week for lunch.
Also out and about this gloomy month was Amanda Brunker. I bumped into the saucy author and her husband, Philip McLaughlin, in the Shelbourne last Saturday night where they dined before heading on to Lillie's Bordello (where they met up with Vogue Williams and husband Brian McFadden, and Jedward.)
They were staying in the Shelbourne for the night while Amanda's mother Betty baby-sat the children.