February 23, 2024
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Award-winning restaurant opens its doors in Thomastown


ONE of Kilkenny’s finest restaurants, the award-winning Barrow’s Keep, opens the doors of its new venture in Thomastown to the public this evening.

Owners Morgan VanderKamer and Stephen McArdle (pictured below) have spent the past few weeks setting up shop at the beautiful stone building at the end of Marsh’s Street, previously home to Bassett’s Restaurant.

Speaking to KilkennyNow.ie ahead of the grand opening, Morgan said the Thomastown restaurant will have the same vibe and feel as their critically-acclaimed diner in Graiguenamanagh, which closed earlier this month.

“We’re really excited about tonight and looking forward to welcoming people to the new restuarant,” says Morgan. “It’s been a fairly hectic few weeks, but thankfully all has gone according to plan and everything is ready to go.”

Aside from the main dining area, Barrow’s Keep Thomastown also boasts a wine bar with its own “slightly paired back” menu, but with the same “locally-sourced ingredients and focus”.

Steak tartare, fresh prawns and olives are among the lighter fare customers can look forward to, along with a “great glass of wine to go with it”, according to Morgan.  She also announced the restaurant’s pizza oven is staying, and will “come to life shortly”.

The menu and ethos of the Thomastown fine diner will be similar to the fare and ambiance Morgan and Stephen served up in Graiguenamanagh, which earned the couple the accolade of Best Wine Experience in Leinster at the 2019 Irish Restaurant Awards, albeit with a few “new twists”.

Barrow’s Keep prides itself themselves on sourcing quality, locally produced foods, “bringing farm to table”.

Morgan sums up their philosophy: “A sense of community drives our restaurant setting and menu ethos, a love and a passion for excellent hospitality is what we bring to the table.”


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