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Go Fork Yourself: Aussie BBQ, Portobello, Dublin

Posted July 6, 2012 by Seán Earley in Eat in
photo 1


Ramp Rating


Type: , ,
Where?: South Richmond St, Portobello, Dublin 2
Value: Budget
Choice: Meat mainly (one veggie option)


Big chairs, Open til 5am, Cheap


Poor service, Dirty tables, No Prices, Greasy Chips

Ramp.ie visits the new Aussie BBQ in Dublin 2 and experiences some teething troubles. Mostly caused by the burnt chips.

by Seán Earley
Full Article

Opened three weeks ago and only a drunken stroll from The George Bernard Shaw, The Aussie BBQ has set a few chins wagging across Dublin. Or at least it’s garnered a very glossy recommendation from LeCool, which would have you wondering if they actually ate at the same Aussie BBQ that we did.

Our party of two dropped by for a quick Saturday dinner that went from meh to meh. While standing in the restaurant, waiting to be seated at the boothed area towards the back, we checked out the menus which are angled towards hungry punters from placards on the ceiling. Burgers, wings, pulled pork wraps and yet strangely no prices on anything! We continued to stand, waiting to be acknowledged by any member of staff for just under ten minutes, which was beyond rude, considering that there was only a mid level of custom.

When we were eventually escorted to a booth, it was covered in the previous occupants’ salted residue. Our server made no effort to clean up and presented us with two A4 printed sheets of paper headed ‘Temporary Menu’. Nice. I ordered the wings with chilli sauce, my dining partner, the pulled pork wrap, and we split a ‘Billabong’ fries.

Ooh fancy wooden board

Save for an Aussie flag, the ‘Billabong’ fries and some altogether random framed photos on the wall featuring who I can only assume are Australian celebrities, the entire place is not very ‘Summer Bay’ at all. Not a single antipodean waiter as far as we could tell, despite a huge population of Aussies in the city. The menu choices? The usual Eddie Rocket’s style, hamburger joint fare, with no alligator or kangaroo in sight. And the atmos? Zilch.

The food, on arrival, was gimmicky and underwhelming. The wings came in a bowl with the pointless addition of a knife and fork. For wings I’d have preferred any of the following: extra napkins, a water bowl, any additional garnish. The wrap came on a wooden board, which looked impressive but turned out to be less than practical. The ‘Billabong’ fries were somehow slightly soggy and simultaneously burned.

For an establishment open three weeks, the fries tasted like they’d been fried in grease that hadn’t been changed in about three years. Reaching for my ’33% Extra Free’ Heinz ketchup bottle on the table, I discovered it was unopened and had to unscrew the lid and remove the film myself. OK, not a huge deal but I’d expect stuff like that to be sorted. Our soft drinks, two ice-cold Pepsis, were the only thing spot on. The wings lacked any real flavour other than hot. The pulled pork wrap, which tasted like regular ol’ pork according to my companion, leaked a rather unappetising ‘pork juice’ all over the gimmicky wooden board. Reader, I can palpably feel you lustful jealousy.

Now, don’t get me wrong. If you’re going for a cheap burger, diner, post-boozing thing then consider the nail hit on the head. What I don’t understand is why Aussie BBQ titles itself a ‘restaurant’, is open during the day, has table service, makes you wait to be seated, has wooden boards and real cutlery and tries in some part to be a restaurant while serving up takeaway fare and neglecting to clear the tables.

The Aussie BBQ is open til 5am and serves beer. This is probably what will keep it going. I’m sure there’s some loophole that says you can keep selling alcohol until crazy o’clock with food purchases. I predict a riot. Several of them in fact, at around 4.30am, over who stole whose chips. Another plus is the price. You’ll fork out only €15 for the kind of slap-up meal we had, which is decent.

@Aussie_BBQ would be delighted to hear your experiences I’m sure…

About the Author

Seán Earley

  • http://twitter.com/martynrosney Martyn Rosney

    Damn it Earley, I’ve been fantasising about going in there for weeks… Now I won’t.

    Ramp is my new Trip Advisor. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/michaelrichard.corcoran Michael Richard Corcoran

    Howdy, Ah Sean, this makes me sad, I have gone there for my ‘Friday Meat Treat’ a couple of times and whilst I agree on the sloppy service and tables each time I was in they told me things are only been built and better service been put in place. 

    At the end of the day your right, it is a grill/dinner and is NOT a restaurant. One plus, all meat can be cooked on a charcoal BBQ which is nice and clean eating for a takeaway.

    If your like me a healthy eater who wants a weekly treat keep with the meat only no chips,cheese or sauces.

    A Meat Box for one includes 1/2lb Burger, 1 BBQ Chicken Fillet, 1ft 100% Pork Sausage and a portion of Pulled Pork all for 8 yo yo’s not bad for poor men like me.

    Have faith and come have a late night Meat Box with me!! You too Martyn. 

    Keep up the good hunting Team Ramp! 

    • http://twitter.com/martynrosney Martyn Rosney

      You lost me at “have a late night Meat Box with me!! You too Martyn” 

      Flattered Michael but I like chicks. Yeah, I said “chicks” to show how much of a heterosexual man I am!  

  • John Bailey

    ‘Now, don’t get me wrong. If you’re going for a cheap burger, diner, post-boozing thing then consider the nail hit on the head’  – But you gave them 1 star. Pretty harsh Sean as you said ‘
    For an establishment open three weeks ‘ as someone who has worked in kitchens its likely the staff are on trial give them a break, the place is great and as Michael says the Meat Box is a fantastic item on the menu and as a no carb(gym ratz) and gluten free option its one others don’t do. They obviously put thought into this and for one of my friends it was great for him as he can only eat gluten free. I on the other hand do not and the Great White is the meal of choice for me (I think the pulled pork wrap is for women) and its unbelievable for €8 1 pound of handmade beef burger and the chips with the garlic dip are just as nice.
    You are right though Aussie need to let people know they are not a restaurant because they will get reviews from people like you judging them as one and its wrong. Also I have been served by an Australian guy a few times so I guess all the ‘summer bay’ staff were not on the day you came in.

    I think you need to give them another try Sean, I had a quick look for other reviews online and any on boards, rate my area etc…. are singing their praises. Try their burger man for god sake 1 pound of beef available until 5am….. I’ll prob end up leaving the clubs early on a Friday night thinking about it.

  • Seathru

    Think you’ve missed the mark here entirely! Staff were friendly, I was seated instantly (instead of standing around waiting to be taken care of) and the food was unreal! The queue out the door, the vast majority excitedly discussing their last meal in the place, suggests you need to spend more time trying the food and less time mocking the boards it’s served on.

  • Rosiero

    I went here with two friends last week, all in our 50′s and we couldn’t fault it.  The food was very good, the burger was really good quality.  One friend had the pulled pork sandwich again very good, the hot dog was absoulutely fabulous.  We had a portion of wings and a portion of ribs to start, I could have eaten a ton of the ribs.  Our waitress was very pleasant and bubbly.  I would not hesitate to go back and it is great value for a girlie saturday lunch.  I think you have been a bit unfair, and your review does not seem quite balanced.  Ah well each to their own I suppose

  • http://twitter.com/seanear1ey Seán Earley

    Things may have changed since our visit, but filthy tables, burned/soggy foul tasting chips and minus atmosphere really did nothing for me guys. You’re all entitled to form your own opinions. The waiting staff didn’t know much at all, let alone seem passionate or recommeding on the food.

    A burger until 5am it may be, but hey, so is McDonald’s.

    Sorry guys but this is a far, far cry from a nice evening out at a reputable restaurant. I’ll have to stand firmly by the very disappointing experience I had at Aussie BBQ. I’d completely regretted not spending my scheckles down the road at Zaytoon that particular dinnertime. Completely honest.

    • John Bailey

      ‘Things may have changed since our visit’ ‘
      I’ll have to stand firmly by the very disappointing experience I had at Aussie BBQ’   - Wow you must be one of Irelands top critics. 

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