La Peniche (French for The Barge), is the name for the MV Riasc, a beautifully restored classic cargo barge moored between locks C4 and C5 on Dublin’s Historic Grand Canal.
After a storied history being part of Ireland’s transport backbone, the MV Riasc was laid up after the canals closed to commercial transport in the 1960’s. She was brought and lovingly restored to the highest standards by her current owners and she now rests in her tranquil moorings on Dublin’s Mespil Road, only 10 minutes from St. Stephen’s Green.
I was fortunate enough to visit La Peniche last Friday afternoon. I’d walk by it regularly but never thought to dine there. I was really missing out. La Peniche is a very different style of dining anywhere around town. The fact you are onboard the MV Riasc on the canal in the first place is unique enough, but the quality of the food and wines is what I was surprised about. The space on the boat is small but these guys manage to still pull off fabulous meals.
La Peniche have a lunch and dinner menu. They have a variety of things on the menu from pan fried fillet of seabass to grilled lamb brochette. I went for the lamb brochette. It was a lovely tender piece of lamb marinated in greek yogurt, ginger, garlic, mint and lemon juice.
The wine menu is also super. I was quite familiar with the wines as I have a background in wine and was quite impressed with the selection. A recommendation for you if you dine in La Peniche iechilerings the Gidondas Grand Montmirail from France. It has a carmine red colour with aromas of overripe red fruit with a touch of mineral and vanilla. A full-bodied flavour, with good and silky tannins. An elegant and harmonious wine.
The service at La Peniche really builds to the character of the evening. Everyone there is so friendly and happy to help at any moment. Quick and efficient.
We dined on the top deck due to covid restrictions which was unfortunate but not la Peniches fault. The interior of La Peniche is stunning. Old memorabilia and picture almost bring you back in time. The room is small and the tables close to each other which build a very exciting and bubbly atmosphere. Which the friendly staff combined it sounded like a fabulous evening.
Top deck is lovely also, a bit more spacious and tables being more spread out if you are looking for a more quiet evening.
Overall I had a spectacular experience at La Peniche and I strongly recommend attending soon, I know I will be.
Book your table here now.