We stayed at the Prairie Townhouse and did not at first think about checking out the wine bar downstairs until, after dining in town, we came back quite early and I stopped off for a nightcap and to check emails (the wifi signal in the guest house was terrible). The Spanish Tempranillo I ordered was so good, and the complementary plate of olives so tasty that I resolved to return next day for dinner. In short, my partner and I had 2 dinners and one lunch after that and everything was fabulous. The Gambas (with chorizo) are spicy and filling, and with a side salad (beautifully presented and with many leaf varieties and other vegetables) and some homemade bread, make a perfect meal. We tried the beef cheeks (tender and flavoursome, although the cauliflower puree could have been a bit more generous), the Black Cat pasta (on the recommendation of one of the friendly staff)- superb black spaghetti with fresh seafood, chilli, spinach and a creamy wine sauce- very, very filling and satisfying. Our final lunch- a superb mushroom and tarragon soup with homemade seeded soda bread, and a crispy calamari sandwich on ciabatta with harissa (yum!) were just perfect. Everything is beautifully presented, comes out quickly, the prices are reasonable and the staff wonderful. In short, I think this is one of the best places I have ever eaten for consistency, service and value. Located in a rather downmarket bit of Salthill, but very popular with locals and should be on everyone's map of Galway! On our first night we ate in town for a much higher price, and it was OK but Black Cat is better all round! Definitely not your bog standard meat and potatoes, but a refreshing take on Mediterranean cuisine using fresh, local produce.
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