Good food at affordable prices at Charcoal Grill

A visit to Harbour Street’s newest restaurant far exceeded my expectations this week, when I was asked to review the offerings of Charcoal Grill, which opened on the street just six weeks ago today.

I visited Charcoal Grill last Wednesday evening at 8pm. Immediately I was struck by the quite impressive stream of mid-week customers, most of whom I figured from overheard conversations were not first-time diners at the restaurant.

The restaurant itself is of medium size, with space for both couples and larger groups. Everything is clean. My waitress for the evening was Jessica, and I can have nothing but compliments for her. She dealt with me - and every other customer I should add - with enthusiasm and friendliness and was always on hand to check diners had everything they might need.

My dining companion - local photographer Ger Rogers - was held up on the golf course and therefore late, leaving me plenty of time to peruse Charcoal Grill’s extensive menu. The restaurant offers lunch and dinner. The dinner menu includes pasta, curries and burgers, but it’s the steak and kebabs that are the big sellers at Charcoal Grill.

Keen to review a dish the restaurant is known for, I plumped for the spicy tandoori chicken kebab. After chatting to Jessica we agreed we’d make that a mixed kebab with lamb too, so I could experience more of the flavours the restaurant offers. Ger chose the steak. We both sampled the chicken chilli delight that’s made with a secret recipe and was, well, delightful!

The kebab I ordered is served in pitta bread, though skewered kebabs are also an option. Though surely enough to feed me by itself, the dish comes with dips, salad and chips as well. Ger’s steak also came with salad and chips, as well as mushrooms and onions. I can’t fault my meal - it was tasty and very filling. Ger enjoyed the steak too.

Charcoal Grill offers good food that’s also affordable - even on a midweek evening. My main dish, which left me feeling really rather full, cost less than €9. The restaurant also offers a four course menu including starter, main, dessert and tea or coffee for just €15. There’s no arguing with that.

Charcoal Grill in Tullamore is the sister restaurant to an Athlone restaurant of the same name. The restaurant group also includes Yaadgar in Tullamore as well as Cafe Mama and Pearl Continental in Athlone. The Tullamore restaurant is open seven days a week from noon until 10pm, with later opening hours available on Friday and Saturday. Walk-ins are accepted, but Jessica advises customers to book for busy weekend nights. “We don’t want to turn people away,” she says.

You can find out more about the restaurant by visiting www.charcoalgrill.ieand make bookings by calling 057 9325000.

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