The Beach Park, an outdoor food market that is now open in Bray, is stocked with some of our favourite eateries from around the country.
If you live in County Wicklow or within 20km of Bray, then we think you might want to plan a visit to this seaside town soon. While there are already heaps of great restaurants to enjoy a takeaway from, including staples like Ripasso, Platform Pizza and Box Burger, a new market-style addition of food trucks has opened today and offers something for everyone.
Beach Park is a new outing from local business owners Shane O'Farrell and Donal Byrne, who also own a number of other establishments in the area, including gastropub Butler & Barry. Set in the courtyard of gastropub The Anchor, which is currently closed, overlooking the town's famous promenade and bandstand.
Although there is quite a bit of saturation in this area, the owners came up with the idea of Beach Park to help bring something new to the town, while supporting local businesses.
"It's been such a tough year for hospitality," They said, explaining the venture. "So we thought that the best way to try bring some momentum to the area and keep The Anchor in people's minds was to team up with other businesses and create partnerships that benefit everyone. It helps us by getting people into the property, within the guidelines of course, while generating income for the vendors we have on site. We opened today and we're doing it softly, softly at the minute with six vendors there to start but we might add a few more in the future - it all depends."
The six vendors include a mix of local favourites and popular offerings from further afield. Known for its iced coffees and treats, family-run coffee shop Glovers was one of the first to join forces with Beach Park, having set up a pop-up in The Anchor ahead of the market's opening. The café's original premises is still open in Bray while some of the team work from the stall at Beach Park.
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Another local favourite at Beach Park is Dirt Birdz, sister restaurant to The Anchor. The fried chicken joint operates on a takeaway basis from a location in Bray town, but is also popping up at the beach to serve up signature chicken, loaded fries and much more.
From further afield, legendary grilled cheese vendor Griolladh now also calls Beach Park home, serving up simple, but delicious toasted sandwiches complete with an Insta-worthy cheese pull. We expect that this truck will be particularly busy, so be prepared to queue.
Little Dumpling, the tiny Asian-inspired restaurant that caused queues aplenty when it first opened in the city centre, has also joined the Beach Park crew. With a menu that includes a mix of traditional and inventive flavours - try the Nutella and marshmallow dumplings to see what we mean - the Little Dumpling pop-up menu has something for everything.
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Straight from Dublin's Tara Street, the team behind Gaucho's Dog bring something completely unique to Beach Park. Imagine a classic hot dog, then picture it loaded with bespoke toppings and you might have some sort of idea about the Gaucho's menu. The restaurant has proven super successful in the city centre, so we think that this new pop-up is a great way to introduce the wacky Gaucho's menu to a whole new audience.
Last, but certainly not least, Póg rounds out the Beach Park set up. Initially, Póg started as a cool pancakes joint, but now has four locations across Dublin city and county, with the Bray pop-up its fifth and newest outing. Always busy and always delicious, the Bray location include Póg's famous pancakes and froyo, as well as loaded fries and drinks.
Beach Park is now open seven days a week from 12-6pm, but as restrictions ease and the days get brighter, O'Farrell and Byrne hope to extend the opening hours. While there are six pop-ups in place at the moment, more are set to join as time goes on, so keep an eye out for new vendors at @beachparkbray on Instagram.