Sunday 17 December 2017

Well, stone the crows: fiery chef is back in the kitchen

Ken Sweeney

Ken Sweeney

THEY once called him a "fiery chef". But the heat won't be in the kitchen at celebrity chef's Dylan McGrath's new restaurant. It will be on diners' tables.

Because the tables at Rustic Stone, the Belfast man's new George's Street restaurant in Dublin, are encased with red- hot stones on which the customers finish frying their own dishes.

Called 'hot-stone cooking', this approach to dining is a million miles away from the chef's former Michelin-starred restaurant, Mint, in Ranelagh, which closed last year.

"It's a new format and a new approach. Most of all, it's a million miles away from what I did at Mint. This isn't a Michelin-starred restaurant because I don't believe that's what most people are looking for these days and I want to embrace the times," Mr McGrath told the Irish Independent.

The 32-year-old revealed he first came across the concept while on holiday in Spain.

"I think Irish people will love this. I want to make clear that I'm not serving red food. The meat will be cooked on one side but the diner can savour the flavour as it's finished off on the stone. What really makes the dining experience are the chutneys and relishes with each dish," he added.

However, while Mint traded in the upmarket suburb of Ranelagh, Rustic Stone trades in the less salubrious setting of George's Street. "The location is great. George's Street is buzzing 24 hours a day," said the chef.

Mr McGrath has already been welcomed by one neighbour. Conrad Gallagher, of Salon des Saveurs in Aungier Street, said: "It's a great concept and I hope it works for him. It's great to see this part of town opening up to more restaurants and cafes."

Irish Independent

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