Sundays on Sandy Road

The Maldron Hotel on Sandy Road is a modern building on the the fringes of the city, a landmark with its glazed exterior and its location opposite The Menlo Park Hotel in an area not lacking in hotels. The glass front points you towards the Headford Road, and inside, the high-vaulted reception space combines international airport chic and modern design which has been nicely updated since opening over a decade ago. Set back from the busy road that encircles the city, it also has the advantage of being just minutes from the centre of town with free underground parking. The grey and gold decor runs throughout and recent improvements keep the look low key and elegant.

Attentive service starts at the front desk and you are directed to the Grain & Grill bar and restaurant area to one side, a darker, more cosy, space in contrast. The bar is always buzzing at the weekend, it is a popular lunch spot for people working locally. The new coffee dock makes good use of the space, and the computer hub is a welcome addition for a hotel aiming to attract business clientele. The restaurant is quieter and more conducive to a relaxed meal. It is popular with families and there are usually a few couples with young children in tow, and you always seem to bump into a few colourful locals. The menu reflects the Sunday clientele, compact but well-judged featuring a traditional Sunday roast or two with other favourites on offer. It represents good value and is also served in the bar area.

Friendly and smartly dressed staff preside over the spacious room and you will be quickly seated, maybe in the comfortable banquette seating beside the extensive window. The menu offers a balance of crowd pleasers such as turkey and ham, chicken parmigiana, or grilled silver hake. It is a user-friendly general bistro menu anchored in traditional food, with some more innovative options. Whether you want the Sunday special roast or the fish of the day, they will both be great value with a price tag of under €16.

The children's menu at the Maldron is good too — soup, half portions of the day's roast, and the all important selection of good quality ice-creams are offered, and the portion sizes are spot on. The penne arrived perfectly cooked with plenty of sauce, covered with as much cheese as a nineties boy band. And on Sundays children under 12 eat free — happy days!

The list of desserts is short and sweet, made mostly in house and served with vanilla ice cream and freshly whipped cream on elaborately decorated plates. We finished with an apple pie and, at only €5.50, well, why not?

There was care shown to every dish sent out from the kitchen, all presented by a competent, efficient, and charming staff. If you want to take a break from your normal Sunday routine, and enjoy good food in a relaxed atmosphere, then The Maldron on Sandy Road is some of the best value you will find.

Maldron Hotel, Sandy Road, Galway. Phone:(091 ) 513 200. [email protected].


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