After making the requisite joke's about how funny Irish city names like Dingle sound to Americans (ah, to be single and mingle in Dingle) we walked down the quaint, pub-lined street of the small seaside fishing town on the West coast of Ireland to Fenton's, a restaurant with a description that sounds like it could be straight out of Williamsburg. The menu features local seafood—some of it, like the periwinkles, hand picked by the chef's family—and Irish-meats produced on the smallest of small scale farms (by our standards, pretty much every farm in Ireland qualifies as small scale), all simply prepared and reasonably priced. It was easily the best seafood meal we had during our 10 days in the country.
The photo above is a snapshot of the glory that is Irish seafood: freshly shucked cockles, lightly steamed Dingle bay mussels, live oysters, picked crab meat, those hand-harvested periwinkles, lightly seared scallops (with their beautiful orange coral), poached langoustines (so much sweeter and more flavorful than your standard shrimp), and half of a European lobster which look very similar to Maine lobsters, but differ in their coloration. Look for the white tips at the end of the claws to make sure your lobsters in Europe are really local. Maine lobsters have red tipped claws.
Click on the photo above to see it in HD glory!
About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Chief Creative Officer of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.