Down for a new vibe this year?
If you’ve decided to base your New Year’s resolutions on seeking new experiences (so much more fun than dieting and schlepping along on a treadmill) you’re not alone.
And if you’re following your inner foodie guide in 2022, there’s one magical spot where you can treat yo’self to some Michelin Star quality at a normal person’s price point.
Ahmet Dede, the former head chef of the Michelin-starred Mews restaurant, now closed, scooped the prestigious gong for a second time, taking home a Michelin star for his spot, Dede in Baltimore in 2021.
The West Cork restaurant (pronounced ‘day-day’) at The Customs House in Baltimore quickly gained a reputation for its Turkish-inspired “inventive interpretation of elegant cuisine” before the lockdown, then regained momentum on reopening, scooping best restaurant in Munster at the Food and Wine Awards.
A busy festive season, despite the dampener of Covid restrictions, has tongues wagging again.
NOTE: DeDe will remain closed for the first week in January after two staff tested positive for Covid-19. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for updates on reservations.
Here are 6 reasons why Dede should be the first restaurant you visit when they reopen in 2022.
1. THE FOOD
I mean, the food is why we go to restaurants. That, and not having to do the dishes afterward. However, Dede serves up some next-level grub you’ll sacrifice your diet to the gods for.
Head chef Ahmet Dede brings a touch of quintessential Turkish cooking to local West Cork produce. The dishes are refined but vibrantly full of sumac flavours, deftly combined with hearty Irish ingredients.
The food is exceptionally well presented too; perfect for a #FoodPic moment.
2. THE LOCATION
The values, attitudes and aspirations of Dede are rooted in West Cork.
The wild sea battered land you overlook while eating will make for a stellar ‘gram op’, even in the blustery cold of winter. Make time for a bracing walk in the wild outdoors before or after you dine.
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3. THE WINE
Early in their journey, Dede partnered with Winelab to offer sustainable tasty wine on tap. This enabled them to offer wine by the glass at an affordable price, while maintaining their commitment to environmentally responsible practices.
With a focus on biodynamics, Dede’s business partner Maria Archer and head sommelier Joey Scanlon have carved out an envious list. Scanlan brought his shimmering penchant for growers Champagne with him and it peppers the list excitedly.
Archer diligently ensured her wine list was enchantingly priced, meaning you can get some really high-quality juice at January-friendly prices.
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4. IT’S ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS
There has been a global movement towards sustainability since Greta Thunberg made us all aware that the climate crisis is coming for us, but a lot of high-end restaurants have been slow to change their wasteful ways.
Dede, however, uses a minimal waste approach in the kitchen. They also use locally sourced ingredients and serve locally roasted coffee. The wine list leans into sustainably produced wine too. All of this means they have a genuinely low carbon foodprint. Huzzah!
5 YOU CAN GET A RESERVATION
Getting a reservation for most Michelin restaurants in Ireland is a nightmare. Dede has seen some stellar booked-out streaks. However, few people venture out for dinner in January so the likelihood of getting that sweet, sweet seat at the table is much higher.