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Eamonn's, A Dublin Chipper in Old Town - By The Owners Of Restaurant Eve - Closed Jul 27, 2019


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I must admit this is an odd place for a girls' night out, but it was a great night! Where else can you celebrate a girls' night out with wonderful, glorious fried food!!! I enjoyed the small fried cod with the hot chili sauce, while my friend had a "really porky" fried sausage (her words, not mine) with the olive sauce. We ordered the recommended curry sauce which helped us consume all our chips. I also agree that the curry went well with the fish. Rounded off the night with a wonderful Chenin Blanc for her and a Smithwicks with Club Lemon for me (what a great combo, as recommended by Andrew behind the counter). Haven't had such a relaxing and great tasting fried food night in such a long time. Vowed to do it again soon. :lol:

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We were in Alexandria this morning having our feet eaten by little fishies (http://doctorfishmassage.com/). So we bit back by going to Eamonn's. I've been to Ireland but never had Irish fish & chips, so I had to try the cod and the grouper. Thank be the cod came in two sizes because there's no way I could've eaten two normal sized filets. My wife had the burger. The gentlemen asked if we wanted to share an order of chips (which stunned me momentarily, huh? the chips don't come with?) so we ordered a small. The burger was a deep fried flavorless patty. My wife ate my fish despite the fact she doesn't like fish and pronounced the fish much better. Oye! I prefer the cod over the grouper (grouper was a bit fishier), but both were really good. The classic tartar was my favorite, whereas the Marie Rose was kind of bland. We'll have to try more sauces next time. I didn't think much of the chips but then I wasn't fond of the chips in England either. I still remember my Chinese restaurant experience in Cork. Would you like rice or chips? WTF do you mean rice or chips?

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So, how was doctor fish? I keep thinking about trying that...

My wife loved it. I got over the gimmick fairly quickly. At first the fish makes this tingling sensation but after a short while, you're more or less desensitized. Fish & normal pedicure is $45, fish and spa pedicure is $70. We asked for the normal pedicure and got the spa pedicure, which is 20 minutes + with the fish, 2 exfoliant scrubs, 1 mud cover, and then lotion. We got there at 11 and didn't get out until about 12:30. You get your money's worth. They're very friendly (almost too much so).

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I still remember my Chinese restaurant experience in Cork.

Off topic, somewhat: My Ireland experience was being served six baked potatoes with my dinner. Seriously. I had to laugh. I guess I do not have the appetite................ :P

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Eamonn's was superb this evening. Agree with the the preference for cod over grouper and tartar sauce (best of all seven sauces) but believe their chips are as delicious as any I've had in the U. K. Outstanding. Just a great meal and, for both of us, it was UNDER $30. This could have been in Dublin....or in Blackpool. In either it would have been excellent.

Also very encouraging to walk by Geranio and, later, drive down King street with virtually every restaurant that we could look into having tables full or near full @8:30 on Sunday evening.

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Escoffier and I stopped at Eamonn's yesterday just before 6 PM. Only a customer was occupying a table and eating. We ordered a grouper, a small cod with large size chips and soda. While we were waiting, an old gentleman was standing at the door and asking if he could get some ice cubes. The cashier was kindly saying that he could go downstairs and get them for him. Not only picking up the ice cubes but he kindly made a conversation with the gentleman. His sincere and kind attitude impressed me a lot.

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Escoffier and I stopped at Eamonn's yesterday just before 6 PM. Only a customer was occupying a table and eating. We ordered a grouper, a small cod with large size chips and soda. While we were waiting, an old gentleman was standing at the door and asking if he could get some ice cubes. The cashier was kindly saying that he could go downstairs and get them for him. Not only picking up the ice cubes but he kindly made a conversation with the gentleman. His sincere and kind attitude impressed me a lot.

Kindness is underrated as a virtue, IMO.

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So, couldn't get a reservation Sat. night.

In the chance that we can't find a place to sit downstairs and the weather's fine, anybody recommend a nearby spot to sit and down our food? Not sure it's an option w beer, though...

What if it's pouring and lightening streaks through the sky? Where should we hi our hithers?

(D.C. residents depending on Metro.)

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I'm shocked to be writing this, but I've noticed a considerable decline in the quality of food at Eamonn's in my last 3 visits, the last of which was a really bad experience on Friday night. My one disclaimer is that we got there pretty late (10:45), which could have contributed to the poor quality of the offering, but I'm in the camp of people that thinks that if you're open, you should be on top of your game.

We got our usual order (large cod, chicken bites, and chips) with the curry, hot chili, and Marie Rose sauces for dipping. First off, Eamonn's appears to have new people on the fryer in the last 6 months, as everything that has come out on our last few visits has been overdone. On Friday the chicken bites had been cooked beyond submission, too dry to eat without dousing them in sauce and really not worth the huge calorie intake. I noticed that the batter appears to be getting thicker as well, a very unwelcome trend at a restaurant that used to do such a great job at using very little batter but maintaining a crisp exterior. The fish suffered from the same problem, overfried to the point that the fish was actually pasted to the breading. For most people this would not be a problem, but my wife has always liked pulling off part of the crispiness and getting at the plain, moist fish underneath, mixing in only desired amounts of the crust with the fish and dip. Not being able to do this really took away from the experience for her, as did the overfried, rubbery chips that came with the meal. It's hard for me to believe that the chips could go from what I first experienced a couple years back to what I had the other night as they were truly bad. Half of them were stuck together, so were burnt and others limp, and again, not worth eating.

I'd like to think that Friday was an anomaly. Maybe the kitchen was tired after a long day, maybe the oil needed to be changed, etc. I will give it some time and go back to Eamonn's in a few months, but I'm worried that the downward trend of my last few visits might be a bad sign for the future of this once-great chipper.

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I noticed that the batter appears to be getting thicker as well, a very unwelcome trend at a restaurant that used to do such a great job at using very little batter but maintaining a crisp exterior. The fish suffered from the same problem, overfried to the point that the fish was actually pasted to the breading. For most people this would not be a problem, but my wife has always liked pulling off part of the crispiness and getting at the plain, moist fish underneath, mixing in only desired amounts of the crust with the fish and dip. Not being able to do this really took away from the experience for her, as did the overfried, rubbery chips that came with the meal. It's hard for me to believe that the chips could go from what I first experienced a couple years back to what I had the other night as they were truly bad. Half of them were stuck together, so were burnt and others limp, and again, not worth eating.
First, I was just thankful to be able to divert gebaby, who was absolutely set on going straight to a quick-pre-bedtime playdate, to stop in here for some chips. I think the dipping sauces were enough to have him ask on the way back home for "more french fries?," a big compliment by him, as he has rejected inferior chips/fries before. He also ate a good portion of a small order of cod.

However, on a Tuesday night at 6:30pm, there were only two others, although three had come in by the time the little man and I were leaving. I don't know if that attributed to my order arriving with somewhat similar issues that DPop experienced or something else we're not aware of. My cod was moist, but it did stick to the batter. I don't remember in comparison to my first visit whether this occurred or not, but I didn't mind this point. The major observation was the inconsistency of the frying in the chips order. Some of the chips were perfect, while others were overfried to a crisp, and dare I say that some weren't even done enough?

I had a good time chip-dipping with the little man and that was all that mattered tonight.

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Last night the cod and chips were as good as ever. Batter perfectly crispy, and the fish soft and flaky. The fries were golden and creamy in the middle. The place was doing a comfortable business. Mr. MV and I were able to snag a table and the wait from order to food delivery was shorter than ever.

I've been to Eamonn's on what seemed to be an "off" night before, but I was undetered in returning again and again. Turns out, it was only a once in a row disappointment for me. :(

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Some days the fish-and-chips itch just demands to be scratched.

Have the chips always been this good? I don't remember them originally being so frite-like. It's essential that you immediately liberate them from the paper bag and even the paper 'holster' if you want to preserve their crispness, but they were first-rate this afternoon.

Didn't see any Lilt in the can cooler, but Club Rock Shandy more than made up for it.

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Some days the fish-and-chips itch just demands to be scratched.

Have the chips always been this good? I don't remember them originally being so frite-like. It's essential that you immediately liberate them from the paper bag and even the paper 'holster' if you want to preserve their crispness, but they were first-rate this afternoon.

Didn't see any Lilt in the can cooler, but Club Rock Shandy more than made up for it.

Chips have been excellent recently. Cod was perfect, too.

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Coming to Columbia PIke - same bldg. as Taqueria Poblano.

And to think, we thought Eamonn's and Taqueira Poblano were just taunting us Pike people for lo these many months with their Coming Soon signs. It looks like there is a light at the end of this trolley tunnel. And a very bright shiny one at that! Yeah! Oh and the William Jeffrey's Tavern sign is up and there is a now hiring sign too. The Pike is where it's at!

The new cocktail bar TNT is set to open on Columbia Pike.

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Was at Eammon's following the Scottish Christmas Walk. Had grouper and chips. A family that was leaving nicely offered us their table. Grouper was good, it got a little soggy by the very end, but it was a huge portion and I couldn't eat it all so I just didn't eat that part. Chips were good, nice flavor and crispness. Curry sauce just isn't as good as I want it to be. Chesapeake was pretty good, rose marie was good.

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Well, its second location on Columbia Pike is up and running, in a great way. There is free parking for an hour in the building lot. I forgot to ask the server if they validate or not beyond that.

We stopped by here after an emergency declaration by little man that he was starving! I like the communal tables and the TNT grownup part of the room is an added bonus for this location (I believe TNT bar is Mr. Thrasher's part and design), for those who like cocktails.

A Pescado ($6.50: fried cod + chips + 99*) is a great deal. Dubbed as a kids meal, the chips are a full sized portion with a hardy cut of fish. LM finished the fish plus half my order of a Codwich ($7?). I can't remember prices compared to Old Town but those two plus drink plus a fried mars bar set me back $23, which is the average dinner price for LM and I. Ending the night with a 99 is just perfect!

*99= a vanilla soft serve made by an ElectroFreeze with half a Cadbury Flake stuck in it.

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At TNT, order the Metal Surrenders cocktail. You will not be disappointed. (well maybe the next day you will if you have 3 of them...). I have tried about 5 or 6 different cocktails, mostly bourbon based, and enjoyed them all, but this is definitely my favorite.

I took a picture of the menu description but am too challenged to figure out how to get it up here. So here is what's in it:

Smooth Ambler Old Scout Bourbon

Massenez Creme de Peche

Sorghum pine cone water

Agostura and house-made peach bitters.

If you want the Drink on the Nightstand cocktail that was just in the new issue of NOVA magazine and raved about elsewhere its no longer available, which is a bummer. For a while you could order it off menu but they are finally out of the ingredients to make it.

Also, there is much debate elsewhere about their fish and chips. I love them both. Definitely more than Brennan's up the street. The fish is very filling (the small is plenty big) and not greasy. Chips are solid and the curry sauce is awesome.

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I had drinks at TNT last Friday and can vouch for their ability to concoct both a Sazerac and a perfect Manhattan. Both sublime. I also had the falafel on flatbread and a mixed green salad. Both solid, not especially notable, but not deficient in any way. I would order them both again.

I will return here soon, though the lure will be the well-crafted cocktails and knowledgable bar staff not far from home. The fact that the food is pretty good is a bonus too.

Sean

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Had prawns and fish of the day, whiting, for lunch today. The fish was kinda fishy, and oil soon pooled on the wax paper lined tray. I only ate half of the fish. I took a picture after I decided the fish was not up to their usual goodness. The prawns were not so greasy, thus much better.

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Had prawns and fish of the day, whiting, for lunch today. The fish was kinda fishy, and oil soon pooled on the wax paper lined tray. I only ate half of the fish. I took a picture after I decided the fish was not up to their usual goodness. The prawns were not so greasy, thus much better.

Funny you should mention this. I eagerly tried out their new location a few months ago and had a similar experience. Fries were still good though.

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Had prawns and fish of the day, whiting, for lunch today. The fish was kinda fishy, and oil soon pooled on the wax paper lined tray. I only ate half of the fish. I took a picture after I decided the fish was not up to their usual goodness. The prawns were not so greasy, thus much better.

I had the whiting there earlier this year. The batter has changed at the new Eamonn's (not sure about the old location) - it's thicker, and more caramel colored. Because it's physically thicker, it retains more oil (and heat). Although I prefer the old batter, there's a tempura-like appeal to the new one (the problem is that it's not tempura, and eating an entire order takes a good 20-30 minutes (the fish arrives *very* hot) - thus, the pooling on the paper as the minutes tick by).

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The batter has changed at the new Eamonn's (not sure about the old location) - it's thicker, and more caramel colored.

I thought so but couldn't be sure since it's been a long time from my last visit to the Old Town location.

To reflect the comment below, had I known before hand, I would not have bothered to drive to Eamonn's.

Edited by Ericandblueboy
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I had the whiting there earlier this year. The batter has changed at the new Eamonn's (not sure about the old location) - it's thicker, and more caramel colored. Because it's physically thicker, it retains more oil (and heat). Although I prefer the old batter, there's a tempura-like appeal to the new one (the problem is that it's not tempura, and eating an entire order takes a good 20-30 minutes (the fish arrives *very* hot) - thus, the pooling on the paper as the minutes tick by).

The problem is that the new batter reminded me of Arthur Treachers. The old recipe made Eamonn's someplace I went out of my way for. The last meal I had didn't compare to the fish and chips at Hunter's Head or Ford's Fish Shack.

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I went to Eammon's during my recent DC/Alexandria visit and had the fried Cod with rose-marie sauce. This was my third Eammon's visit in five years, and I wasn't disappointed. Perhaps I didn't notice the change in batter from my earlier visits, but I still felt it was nicely fried and tasty. I'm not a conoisseur by any means, but I enjoyed it.

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Little man and I went last night. He was concerned because he heard his first restaurant-related rumor that this place might close if more business doesn't pass through. So, by request, we went.

We had lots of fun playing Battleship there--I really like how they have board games available. The food was great as always (fish crispy, not fishy tasting, large portions, et al.), but the rumor is partially right. We were there for about almost 2 hours, and only three tables and one carry out came in, including us. I know it is a Tuesday night, but even TNT side was visibly forlorn.

Then I inquired further, and frankly, many of the Pike businesses aren't doing well, even RedRocks, apparently. I think only Tacqueria and Lost Dog are doing well.

So, how can we as a community or the area try to help? I really like the fact that this area is building up and it is close by my new place.

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Little man and I went last night. He was concerned because he heard his first restaurant-related rumor that this place might close if more business doesn't pass through. So, by request, we went.

We had lots of fun playing Battleship there--I really like how they have board games available. The food was great as always (fish crispy, not fishy tasting, large portions, et al.), but the rumor is partially right. We were there for about almost 2 hours, and only three tables and one carry out came in, including us. I know it is a Tuesday night, but even TNT side was visibly forlorn.

Then I inquired further, and frankly, many of the Pike businesses aren't doing well, even RedRocks, apparently. I think only Tacqueria and Lost Dog are doing well.

So, how can we as a community or the area try to help? I really like the fact that this area is building up and it is close by my new place.

I had drinks at T.N.T. Bar last week - the cocktails there are wonderful, and the setup behind the bar is a bartender's dream.

I'm happy to organize a dr.com event if anyone is interested. Other then letting them know we're coming, no special arrangements would really need to be made with the restaurant. This could also easily qualify as a $20 Tuesday for those not wishing to imbibe.

$20 Tuesday Happy Hour at T.N.T. bar? I miss the old get-togethers at Corduroy et al (and yes, we can do Baby Wale as well).

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Was in today for the first time in several months and agree with several upthread about the new batter. Very thick, darker, heat and oil retentive and kind of gets in the way more than enhancing for me.  Cracked most of it off and pushed it to the side. Noticed other tables doing the same. It's just too much.  Wish they'd go back to how it was before.

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TNT has lowered the price of its cocktails.  Most of the home grown ones are $10.  They are as delicious as ever and certainly worth it in my opinion.

I didn't eat at the other Eamonn's enough to notice a change in the batter, but I still really like it.  As I have mentioned previously, the curry sauce is awesome on the chips. They are also serving paninis during lunch now.

This place really needs to see more traffic.  Please go visit.   It is a great place to go in the Columbia Pike neighborhood and we would very much like for it to stay that way.

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Little man and I went last night. He was concerned because he heard his first restaurant-related rumor that this place might close if more business doesn't pass through. So, by request, we went.

...

Look at this sign I saw at Eamonn's Columbia Pike today.  Society Fair coming to the Eamonns location.

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Look at this sign I saw at Eamonn's Columbia Pike today.  Society Fair coming to the Eamonns location.

This is correct, and I've verified it myself. TNT will remain. Society Fair will replace Eamonn's in February (my initial impression is that this is a very thoughtful and wise decision). At some point in the future (not anytime soon), look for Eamonn's to open in DC.

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Long overdue in writing this, but we went for our first visit May 5. Easy to remember the date so far out since every Mexican place was lined up out the door and we were the only ones in Eamonn's. The short of it all is that the food was disappointing. I see some earlier posts that the batter formula was changed for a more caramelized appearance. I actually think ours was burnt/overcooked. My wife ordered since I was a little late getting there, and she got the cod and shrimp for sure and the other fish I think was the basa. The fish were both good and decent portions, though not filling to the point I usually feel full after eating that much fried food. The shrimp, however, were reminiscent of Long John Silvers, though a little bigger. Fortunately my daughter liked them and ate most of them, sparing me. Chips were good, but again nothing to make a special trip for.

Place was so dead at one point the entire staff went outside while we were finishing up our meal. When they came back in I joked that  I helped myself to a couple more pints of Guinness.

One plus was the music, heavy on 80's music. I hadn't heard Camouflage's That Smiling Face in a couple decades.

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Great story! And it isn't going unnoticed.

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The armstrongs should give that employee a raise!

Yes, and the public should be aware that this type of leadership comes directly from the top, i.e., from the Armstrongs.

(Sorry to pre-quote you.) :)

That's my story guys.  :)

PS - My brother is a physician, and he once told me that it's surprisingly common for young males in their early-mid 20s to go to the ER, thinking they're having a heart attack, when (after all the tests have been performed) they're having a mega-panic attack. I should know - it happened to me once, too, about 25 years ago when I woke up with tachycardia (I did a 360 going 70 mph on a rain-slicked street driving myself to the ER at 2 AM). In my case, it turned out to be a benign reaction to medication, but man was I disoriented and scared.

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19 hours ago, Bart said:

Yikes!  Is this a catastrophic (near) total collapse of an empire or a planned reduction of the footprint?

https://dc.eater.com/2019/7/17/20697735/px-speakeasy-bar-closing-alexandria-old-town

I think they changed focus to the Wharf (can't blame them, it's new and hot).  The Armstrong's also still have Hummingbird which wasn't mentioned here, as I am not sure it was part of EGFG.  I think the rise of boutique cocktails everywhere probably took a hit on PX as being special, and people want new and different, so I can't blame him for not renewing the rent, when he has a giant space to manage.

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On 7/17/2019 at 3:22 PM, Bart said:

Yikes!  Is this a catastrophic (near) total collapse of an empire or a planned reduction of the footprint?

I suspect both Px and Eamonn's had a common lease, or something close to that - they're closing the same day, and don't forget, you can walk from Px down a "secret staircase" to Eamonn's - it may be a single space, like Doi Moi and 2 Birds 1 Stone, or Destination Wedding, or whatever is there now.

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On 7/20/2019 at 8:12 PM, DonRocks said:

I suspect both Px and Eamonn's had a common lease, or something close to that - they're closing the same day, and don't forget, you can walk from Px down a "secret staircase" to Eamonn's - it may be a single space, like Doi Moi and 2 Birds 1 Stone, or Destination Wedding, or whatever is there now.

A sushi restaurant called the Handover opened in the Eamonn's location, and the PX space is a separate restaurant called King's Ransom (via Alexandria Now).

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