The Winding Stair Bookshop & Cafe is, ironically, the perfect place to unwind. It’s a famous Dublin landmark and has been for a long time. It’s named after the Yeats poem, ‘The Winding Stair’ because of its long, winding staircase and it’s a hotspot for book lovers.
Tourists and locals alike come to The Winding Stair to enjoy both the bookshop and the restaurant. Downstairs, the bookshop stocks plenty of classics alongside new releases. You’ll find novels and poetry from Irish writers and poets alongside the works of international authors and it’s easy to get lost in the shelves of this place.
There’s also a backroom where you’ll find loads of pre-loved, second-hand books. Shelves of second-hand books are always a treasure trove, in our opinion.
It was in the 1970s that this place really became famous. Writers and creative minds would meet to debate, talk through ideas and write. There have even been film scenes shot in The Winding Stair, besides many poems and novels which have been written there.
From the restaurant upstairs you can also see another location where many, many movie scenes have been filmed: Ha’penny Bridge. The restaurant offers a stunning view of this iconic location, offering creative inspiration in spades.
The restaurant hasn’t always been there. In fact, in 2005 the bookshop closed for a year but in 2006 the restaurant was created upstairs and the beloved bookshop reopened downstairs. This charming pairing of food and literature really works and the place has been open ever since.
So, now you can buy some books from downstairs and head upstairs to enjoy a delicious meal whilst you excitedly stare at whatever it is you’ve just purchased. You can expect proper Irish food made from proper Irish ingredients.
Think Dingle Bay crab, smoked haddock, and pork cutlets. You can enjoy a 9oz black, Irish strip loin or cod caught in Irish waters with potatoes, pancetta, and seaweed butter.
It has to be one of the best places in the city to enjoy Irish food and a set dinner costs €65 for three courses. A set lunch will set you back €50 per person for three courses, too. However, you can also choose from the a la carte menu.
All of this delicious food can be paired with beers, ales, and wines from local and international microbreweries and producers. Care and attention go into sourcing everything that is served at The Winding Stair and that’s why it’s such a popular and beloved Dublin spot.