Upon completion of the Howth famous Cliff Walk, I had the taste for the Irish lunch specialty fish and chips. Walking along the pier in historic downtown, I found that the restaurants didn't open for lunch until 12.30. I had plans back in Dublin and wanted to eat before I left, if possible, and found Leo Burdock's right by the DART station that fit the bill to a T.
Waiting in line, I had the opportunity to enjoy reading what they've posted about the history of this 100-year-old establishment and read a sample of the many famous people who've eaten here previously.
In the beginning, Leo Burdock's was opened in 1913 by Patrick and Bella Burdock in Christchurch. Their son, Leo, in his horse-drawn buggy, was the early morning riser attending fish markets to pick the freshest fish, then farms to pick up fresh potatoes and then coal, the way the pans were heated until 1991. Coal is not common in Ireland and these pans are thought to be the last in the world to be coal-fired.
This popular chain served witness and fed the people of Ireland through the Easter Rising, the War of Independence, and part of World War II. Although Ireland remained neutral during WWII, shortages caused Leo Burdock's to close temporarily during WWII and then resume as the single, original shop in Christchurch. We're fortunate that more stores have opened again.
There was just enough time in line to read from the list of famous visitors: U2, Sandra Bullock, Sir Ben Kingsley, Charlize Theron, Russell Crowe, Alan Rickman, Daniel Day-Lewis, Aidan Quinn, The Wolfe Tones, and the cast of P.S. I Love You. The Howth Cliff walk in spots does look suspiciously like part of Dun Laoghaire from the movie.
Served in a sustainable paper container with a thin wood fork and knife, a napkin, a wedge of lemon, and a single container of tartar sauce, the plank of cod and small additional circle cover a large serving of chips that even after the morning's hike I couldn't finish.
Stay and eat within the restaurant, decorated with fish nets, shells, happy signs, and even an (artificial) shark head staring at you eating what should be its dinner. Or ask for take away and enjoy at the end of the pier listening to one of the musicians or catch the seals in front of the Celtic Voyager. I have a feeling these seals are accustomed to this spot for lunch.
It was fortunate for me that my apartment is between the DART line and bus line to head on my next tour. I dropped the rest of my lunch serving and had it for my next meal. It was as good after being oven warmed, and I had ketchup with my fries. Yum!
There are many restaurants along the pier in Howth but if you're in the mood for fish and chips or are on any kind of time restriction, I highly recommend Leo Burdock's.