Irish pubs are a staple here in Boston, but I’m not always looking for the sports bro vibe that a lot of them have. Enter Kinsale, a pub and restaurant that pays homage to a rich Irish history while offering up contemporary cuisine and cocktails that make my inner foodie squeal. Located across from City Hall Plaza, Kinsale has expansive indoor and outdoor seating and, get this, FREE parking. That’s right, your parking at the garage is free with only a $20 tab at the restaurant. It’s the ideal spot to grab a few drinks before taking the green line to a Sox game. Yes, I just endorsed the T. Lord have mercy.
Last week I had the opportunity to brunch at Kinsale with Blog and Tweet Boston. Their brunch is a well-kept secret. Not only are the food pairings unique and delicious, but the city hall area is typically quiet on the weekends, making Kinsale a great option for busy brunch days when tables are few and far between. Pictured above is the restaurant’s French 75, a refreshing blend of champagne, gin, and lemon juice. I’m typically a mimosa girl but the 75 had the perfect blend of bite and smoothness.
My first course was this warm goat cheese salad that I haven’t stopped dreaming about since. These types of salad are big in France and it immediately transported me back to my last Paris trip, where I ate many such a dish on the banks of the Seine. The Kinsale version featured a balsamic glaze, caramelized pears, walnuts, arugula, and a sizable piece of warm, fried goat cheese. This is the kind of elevated cuisine that sets Kinsale apart from your typical Irish bar.I followed the Parisian style starter with an all-American breakfast dish: Eggs Benedict. Kinsale has a few iterations including a crab cake version and a vegetarian spinach and tomato option. I went classic with roasted potatoes, hollandaise, and thick slices of ham. There are two tests in my book for a good brunch place: pancakes and benedict. The benedict passed with flying colors, just the right amount of creamy, salty, and crunchy. As for pancakes, Kinsale offers a blueberry mascarpone buttermilk version. I think you can see where this is going.
Brunch is nothing without dessert and I abandoned my typical chocolate-seeking instincts in favor of this blackberry, cabernet cheesecake. I am so glad I did. The subtle, moist cheesecake served as a perfect backdrop for the sweet berry compote, and the cabernet flavor kept the dish from going too saccharine.
In the blogger tradition, I’m a frequent and critical bruncher. Kinsale lived up to all my high expectations. The food was delicious, and the decor exuded both an intimate Irish pub, and a hip new spot with ample outdoor seating and large windows. The meals are very reasonably priced, with every brunch dish clocking in under $14 and dinner entrees capping at $16. Add in the free parking and you’ve got yourself a steal. For you social butterflies, Kinsale has trivia every Wednesday at 7pm and karaoke every Thursday at 8:30pm.
Photos are mine.
I was provided with a complimentary meal by Kinsale, however, all opinions expressed are my own.