Thundercut Alley

Where: Thunder Cut Alley, 7, Smithfield, Co. Dublin

If you’re in Smithfield, this is the place to eat. Maybe ‘The Generator House’ if you’re looking for a burger, but absolutely bypass the shitfest that is ‘My Meat Wagon’, and take a trip in time, back to the 80s at Thundercut Alley.

This is also where you’ll find ‘Gutterball’, a bowling themed restaurant specialising in meatball subs, from the people behind the nearby ‘My Meat Wagon’. I ate in My Meat Wagon back in 2014 and have held a 2 year grudge since, it was truly the worst BBQ I had eaten in Dublin, never will I forget the sawdust dryness of the brisket, I vowed never to return. It’s hard to deny the appeal of those hoagies though, and I will get around to see if they’re as tasty as the instagram pictures suggest.

Anyway, on this particular day, we were looking for something a bit more substantial and ventured to the rear of the building, where Thundercut Alley is located. This small space has a dingy, retro, dive bar interior with old video games, graffiti and PacMan-playing TVs on the ceiling. In fact, it was so dark and intimate that we were sat beside a slightly older couple shifting the faces off each other for an hour, which could’ve been detrimental to our appetite. The place exudes cool. However, the dim lighting made for a shit picture;

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The menu reads like you’re in Eddie Rockets with all the usual suspects; sliders, nachos, some version of mozzarella sticks amongst others and another more interesting section of flatbreads, which in the end, neither of us went for. I opted for the trio of tacos pictured above. These were anything but the American diner shite you’d find in a chain restaurant. The first taco was packed with moist pulled chicken, fried chunks of chorizo and topped with some kind of pickled onions and fresh red chillies, it was the best of the 3. The second was a pulled pork taco with what I think was a sweet yogurt-based dressing, cheese crisps, a blackberry and salad. This too, tasted great. The final taco would’ve been perfect if it weren’t for my aversion to blue cheese and guacamole. I feel like everyone worships avocado and I’m struggling because to me, it tastes like wet compressed grass, but nobody will listen and I’m all alone in this world. Unfortunately, guacamole had been used as an adhesive to keep my taco fixed to the plate. The innards of that taco contained huge chunks of braised pulled beef, topped with pickled red cabbage and the dreaded blue cheese foam, not the fault of Thundercat Alley, it just wasn’t to my taste. I got these beauties with a side of ‘disco fries’ – fries presented in a bread pan, covered in gravy and topped with cheese. Amy got the sliders and a mini saucepan of gravy on the side for dipping with fries. I vouch for the fact that these were pretty good too, after taking a sneaky bite.

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We ordered a couple of cocktails for €12 a pop alongside our food. Amy choose wisely with an espresso martini, while I ordered, less wisely, a forgettable hibiscus flavoured concoction topped with prosecco, overly bitter and dry – again, just wasn’t to my taste. If you’re in Smithfield, this is the place for food, it was surprisingly good!

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