Taste of Dublin – coming soon – but you should avoid it

The Taste of Dublin food festival is coming up soon in a weekend in June. Having sampled the whole occasion in the past, I’d recommend giving it a miss.

Assume 4 people going along on a Saturday, including booking fees, the basic cost of entrance will be €114. But that only gets you in the door – it doesn’t even get you any food vouchers. Including food vouchers bumps you up to the Premium entry (€20 of food vouchers per person) – at an overall ridiculous cost now of €180.

I can’t argue that it’s not a decent day out, but for that price, here’s an alternative recommendation.

  1. Check out any of the restaurants that are serving food on the day. Lets say Town Bar & Grill for example.
  2. Call your 3 mates and arrange a Saturday to meet up for lunch – even the same Saturday as the Taste of Dublin.
  3. Book into Town Bar & Grill for lunch at €27.95 per person for a 3 course lunch with tea or coffee. And that now leaves you with over €50 to spare to spend as you chose – bottles of wine possibly.

This, I reckon, is a far better way to spend your money if you’re looking for a Saturday afternoon out. And you don’t have to avoid the rain, eat small portions off a paper plate, and you’re guaranteed a seat. A far better day out.


10 Responses to Taste of Dublin – coming soon – but you should avoid it

  1. Paul Kiernan May 8, 2009 at 14:27 #

    You can certainly rack up the euros at it. Your sums are good, but you’re comparing apples and oranges, at the same time. You’re talking about two different experiences. I will be the first to admit that the price-portion-size ratio needs to improve. Anyway, surely prices have dropped this year? Haven’t they?!?

  2. valueireland May 10, 2009 at 19:15 #

    @Paul – Yes, different experiences, but I suppose what I was getting at was that you could partially replicate the Taste of Dublin experience, while eating better, and cheaper, by going direct to the restaurants themselves.

    Given that it’s €25 to get in the door – for the organisers and not the restaurants – I’m sure they’d appreciate if people went direct as well.

    And those are this years prices – didn’t go last year so don’t know if the prices have dropped. I can guess though 🙂

  3. Emerging Writer May 28, 2009 at 20:05 #

    use the code PREVIEW for a discount

  4. declan May 29, 2009 at 10:39 #

    It looks like that discount code doesn’t allow you book for Saturday – only Friday or Sunday.

    You do get €20 off 2 premium tickets for the Sunday though – from €90 to €70.

  5. Lee June 8, 2009 at 11:18 #

    It’s expensive but it’s also a good day out & a chance to taste sample dishes in a number of restaurants. I would recommend to get the Premium tickets so you get some of the food currency as well as your entrance.

  6. Paul Moloney June 8, 2009 at 18:03 #

    I’ve never met anyone who went to it who thought it was good value, and that includes people in the recruitment industry who got tickets through work.

  7. Buzz June 8, 2009 at 19:17 #

    Totally agree, last time I went there was absolutely no tables even to rest your food on, we ended up resting our food & wine on a bin!

  8. Siobhan June 18, 2009 at 12:42 #

    Taste of Chicago does the same thing, without an entry fee. You just turn up, buy as may food tickets as you want, lots of live music, and is great. I don’t understand why there is an entry fee for this one. Why pay for the privilege of buying food you can get any day?

  9. Liam L June 18, 2009 at 12:53 #

    I attended the taste of Dublin for the third time this year, the first year it was excellent, last year was pretty good, this year it was very disappointing. It was certainly more expensive than previous years at €90 for two (incl 20 euro food vouchers each). Hard times have certainly hit the vendors with little or no free tasters (except sausages and chocolate) and the cuisine on offer to buy was very disappointing, in previous years restaurants made a conscious effort to showcase what the dining experience in their establishments was like to encourage punters to try the real deal with quality mini versions of what you would expect in their restaurants.

    This year I felt that most of the restaurants were solely in it to make a quick buck, with cheap finger food such as fish or steak and chips and burgers on most stalls – where has all the haute cuisine disappeared to? I felt it was a poor advertisement for Dublin’s so called fine dining restaurants.

    Finally, having went in at 2pm on Sunday and then to be herded out like sheep at 4pm was the icing on the cake for what has clearly become a money grabbing venture as opposed to a celebration of food on this Island. As you might expect I will not be attending next year.

  10. Peter October 24, 2009 at 16:24 #

    Taste of Dublin is certainly not a place where you hunt for bargains but I still would recommend to go as it’s a brilliant event.

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