Remember when I mentioned my roommate and I were off an adventure to eat at every restaurant in Downtown Disney? Well, we began our gastronomical voyage last night, and let me say, we had quite a fantastic start.
Located in the middle of Downtown Disney, Raglan Road is a family-friendly Irish pub. They have an outdoor patio usually accompanied by live Irish music that draws a crowd outside the dining area. The singers are quite talented and have enrapturing, authentic Irish accents. Best of all, they play nightly, so there’s no way to miss out on the entertainment.
We called to make reservations, noting how busy it had been lately with all the summer tourists. The man on the phone, in his uptalking, cheerful accent, informed us our reservations were for nine-fifteen and told me to have a lovely day. I will admit I was so happily distracted by his accent that I forgot what time our reservations were for. (Luckily my roommate was listening in!)
Raglan Road also has Irish step dancers on the hour! As an Irish dancer of six years myself, this was one of the best parts of the evening. Combining Disney, dance and dinner? Sounds like paradise!
The restaurant offers reasonably priced, hearty Irish meals like chowder, fish and chips, beef stew and shepherd’s pie. Meals are prefaced by a small loaf of Irish Soda Bread with a sweet, thick dipping sauce. The waitress explained it was a reduction of Guinness beer and sugar served in a pool of olive oil, an original house favorite.
And, of course, the main dish was delicious. I ordered the shepherd’s pie, and it was served with a ‘contemporary twist’ indeed! It was plated upside-down with a creamy mashed-potato layer and hearty finish of cheese. The presentation was original and unique and delicious to boot!
The pub was expectedly loud and boisterous as the live music played a selection of Irish favorites and the dancers demonstrated their jigs. It was a lively atmosphere, a really fun joint. The interior was decorated to perfection–simple, but very clean and distinctly Irish, fortunately decked in colors other than green.
We had so much fun! What a great place to dine. It will definitely be making a repeat appearance in my repertoire of restaurants. Best of all, I managed to get the Guinness Dipping Sauce recipe. Serve it with Irish Soda Bread. Enjoy, and take the luck of the Irish with you!
Raglan Road Bread Dipping Sauce
Equal parts Guinness and brown sugar (A pint of both, more or less depending on how many servings you’d like)
1. Combine Guinness and sugar in a medium saucepan. Simmer on low, stirring occasionally, for about an hour or until liquid is reduced by half.
2. Remove from heat. Cool completely.
3. Serve equal parts reduction sauce and olive oil in a small serving dish or shallow bowl. Serve with Irish Soda Bread.