I’ve had Dublin 4 Gastropub bookmarked for a really long time. Too long. Therefore, I was so pleased when a fellow foodie — who absolutely adores this place — agreed to have lunch with me here. Those of you who don’t know how the name “Dublin 4” came about will be interested to know that it is actually a postal code (similar to our zip codes) and services an area which houses University College Dublin, as well as several foreign embassies. In current culture, “Dublin 4” or “D4” is used to represent the more affluent lifestyles of the residents in that area.
So with that out of the way, I am excited by the menu, as there are so many things I’m eager to try. I consult my friend who has dined here numerous times on our menu for the day.
So many things piqued our interest so we decided to order as many we were able to put away starting with D4 Reuben Rolls ($13), egg rolls stuffed with house cured corned beef, house-made sauerkraut and Blarney Irish cheddar. I wasn’t sure I would enjoy these but I was wrong. They were absolutely delicious.
D4 Seasonal Soup Selection ($9) was mushroom bisque and it was delightful. Earthy and so umami-filled, each spoonful was relished with pleasure.
I love smoked salmon and the House-Cured Smoked Irish Salmon ($16) caught my eye. It was even better than I had expected. Succulent slices of luscious salmon were served with dill creme fraiche, chopped egg, pickled onions, and slices of rustic wheat baguette. I didn’t need any of the accoutrements because the fish was incredible on its own.
I wanted to try a sandwich and the lamb burger was a highly recommended suggestion, however, I wasn’t in the mood for a burger, so we selected Niman Ranch Pork Belly BLT ($16). Thick slices of pork belly, wild arugula and heirloom tomato were topped with house-made sweet onion and bacon marmalade. The flavor profiles were great, but the bread was a tad soft bordering on mushy — maybe toasting it a little longer would help.
I had heard so many great things about the Dublin Lawyer Lobster Pie ($21) and I was glad it was a lot smaller than I had initially expected. Chunks of Maine lobster are bathed in a cognac cream sauce dotted with fresh shucked peas. The pastry is nice and flaky while the filling is perfectly seasoned with the right consistency — not too thick and not watery. Well worth the price!
Fish & Chips ($20) is always a favorite of mine, but few restaurants do it well. The one here is good, but not perfect. The fresh Norwegian cod is incredible, flavorful and moist. The Avery White Rascal beer batter was too greasy and caused the bottom of the fish sitting on the plate to be wet and soggy. The crushed garden peas was absolutely stunning, I wonder if they offer it as a side.
This little unassuming spot is a definite winner, offering hearty and comforting food that will surely appeal to all. Its location is convenient, located right off the freeway. I will be back!
Dublin 4 Gastropub
26342 Oso Pkwy
Mission Viejo, CA 92691