Oct 052009

I sent this email to Brendan Howlin TD, and I hope he writes back.


Dear Deputy Howlin

I wonder if you could describe the meal you had in Shanahan‘s Restaurant with Deputy John O Donoghue, Ceann Comhairle?

I know it cost €237, but I’d be interested to know what each of you had for starter, main course and dessert, and whether you would recommend the restaurant. Was there any aspect of the meal that you enjoyed more than all the rest?

I will pass the information to an old-age pensioner of my acquaintance who lives for a week on approximately the amount your meal cost. Unfortunately, he also has to pay for shelter and heating out of the money, as well as food for the entire week, and therefore will probably not be able to sample Shanahans’ fine cuisine, but I know he’ll enjoy your description of the food and surroundings.

Did you have a bottle of wine with the meal? If so, could you perhaps let me know what it was and how much it cost?

Many thanks


Shanahans Menu


For starters, I think I’ll have the crab salad for only €25.75.

I’ll follow that with pea and ham soup for a piffling €10.50.

That T-bone steak sounds delicious at only €52. I think I’ll have it with the whipped potatoes for only €9.25, and some vegetables on the side for another €8.25. Oh, and a few mushrooms for €9.50 and some chips for another €9.25. A steal.

I’ll finish that off with a cheese board for €12.50

Yum Yum. Only €137 all in.

What are you having?


I also wrote to Éamon Gilmore, leader of the labour party, asking him for a comment, and if he replies I’ll bring his comments to you. Éamon is a fairly straight dealer, and I doubt if he’ll be too impressed.


On the positive side Shanahans do offer an affordable fixed menu (though not suitable for pensioners, obviously)

Trio of Irish Salmon: Oak Smoked, House Cured and Pastrami with a Giant Blini, Creme Fraiche and Caviar

Sizzling Black West Coast Mussels with Shallots, Garlic, Herbs, Fresh Lemon and Butter

John Shanahan’s Split Pea & Ham Soup

Caesar Salad with Reggiano Parmesan and Garlic Crouton

Petit Filet (6oz / 170g)
A smaller cut from the most tender of all strips

New York Strip Sirloin (8oz / 227g)
A little firmer, yet tender with a rich flavour

Crisp Pork Shank and Cracklings
with Melted Cabbage and a Spiced Apple Sauce

Roast Cod wrapped in Pancetta
on a Spicy White Bean Stew

Hot Chocolate Fondant with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream

* Omelette Soufflé Rothschild on a (sic) Apricot Pureé Coulis and (sic) Caramalised Gingered Rhubarb

Shanahan’s Bread and Butter Pudding with Whiskey Butterscotch Sauce

Shanahan’s Select Blend of Coffee & Tea

Petits Fours

All for €55.00

Isn’t that fantastic value?

I’m going to print this out and stick it on the notice boards of dole offices around the country.


Now.  What about breakfast?

Well, the Shanahans breakfast is hard to beat for value.

For only €55, you get this:

Orange Juice

Brown Bread & Blueberry Muffins

Fillet Steak with Scrambled Eggs


Hash Browns, Grilled Tomato, Sausage, Mushrooms and Black & White Pudding

Fresh Fruit

Tea or Coffee

So there you have it.   For only €55, you can have orange juice, a bun, some sausages, an apple and a cup of tea.

Imagine that.

All for only €55!

Where would you get it?

And they say Gobshite Ireland is dead?

Bock Pretentious Gobshite Award of 2009 hereby awarded to Shanahans without further ado.


Coulis?  Isn’t that jam?

It’s far from coulis John O Donoghue and Brendan Howlin were reared.


  30 Responses to “Dining With John O Donoghue — Letter to Brendan Howlin TD”

Comments (29) Pingbacks (1)

    The Menu looks absolutely super, this sounds like the kind of place I should dine, bet I wouldn’t run into any Poor or Middle class (the new poor) in there. Fantastic, now where is this Shanahans & where is the credit card, can’t afford it on what I earn, I work in the private sector so the tax payer wont pick up the bill for me, bastards.

    Still I can mix with the poor afterwards, I’ll pop into O’Donohues for a pint, wonder if John will be in, doubt it.


    Don’t think you will get a reply but you may surprise us!! Recently had to go social welfare office and there was signs up telling you that you could not bring any food or drink in, despite the fact that you could be there for hours, maybe this is because there are no public toilets there? wouldn’t like to be standing in a queue there for hours and reading that menu,feeling peckish just reading it now and wandering what in God’s name did they actually have to eat!!!!


    Jesus-God-All-Fucking-Mighty – AGAIN!

    Do you k now what really pisses me off about all this? Well it’s not Shanahan’s restaurant and it’s not their pricing policy. That’s their business and fair fucks to them for pulling it off.

    No, it’s this. That every citizen of this country has a fucking brain and; allegedly, the ability to think as well. I cannot imagine a life without both; apart from the lowly amoebas of course.

    BOCK, a citizen with a thinking brain, capable of adding two and two has figured this out while almost the entire brain addled population sits back and watches TV shows happily ignoring the calamity about to befall us all. Ostriches, heads in sand etc………

    Excellant post BOCK.

    God help us all.

    It makes my blood boil.


    As Sheriff of Nottingham I find this quite simple. We shall screw the peasants for more Tax. King Brian shall back us up. Where is the wine list?


    J.O’D: I would sincerely love to comment on this story but AS YOU KNOW, I am constitutionally prohibited from doing so.

    Plain People: Er, I don’t actually see anything which would prevent you from…

    J.O’D: ARE YOU A CONSTITUTIONAL LAWYER? Then shut up–no comment. (Ah, more caviar, Brendan? Of course it’s Beluga. Yes, north of the Caspian, naturally.)



    New York Strip Sirloin..I lived in Manhattan for a while..couldn’t get off the subway without getting mowed down by the herds of rampaging cows..desperate state of fuckin affairs….shower of cunts…….


    Its simple they (the political class) know they will get away with this crap because they all back each other and we are too apathetic to really do anything about it other then moan


    FG, Labour and The Greens are all complicit in this. None have gone for O’Donoghues head because of the can of worms that it will open. They all enjoy lavish expenses and if O’Donoghue is taken down because of it others will be exposed and the gravey train will be derailed. He will not resign, his resignantion will not be sought, the system will be reviewed.


    Fair comment No.8,but if the pressure is kept on these fuckers then maybe,that gravy train can be derailed.


    Shanahan’s? I bet they swore the steak moooed… (at least that’s what the Aer Lingus in-flight magazine has been saying since I started flying)


    Beef should be properly hung, not fresh.

    The Bull ODonoghue, for example, is exceptionally well hung, by the look of things.


    Quite so No8.. if Ireland has not had its expenses scandel yet, then its soon to come.. I watched with frenzied glee as the british mp,s got the bloodied snouts they so richly deserved, and big suprise, not a one stuck a knife in the other.. It was only a matter of time before the next party would get a royal drubbing at the hands of the daily telegraphs whistle blower.. among stories of moat cleaning, duck islands, and house fulls of very yummy furniture and decor paid for by an unknowing british public, one beauty stood out.. MP Jaquie Smiths husband ( on her payroll as personal secritary no less) got fingered for watching porn on satellite tv and charging it out to a government account… ah, bless him!!.. But ill tell you what, it got the indifferent british public interested in politics again.. and we havnt stopped since….


    Got fingered for watching porn?


    And He’s Off, runs the headline in today’s (Wednesday) Irish Sun, picture of a horse alonside him on the front page. He’ll steeping down next week it has been announced, five days left t put in another few claims.


    Actually all he has to is hang on until after the Weekend . When the Greens will pull the plug and he shall be returned automatically to his “entitled” position by the Grace of God and the will of the People King of Kerry. And fuck the begrudges. He and his Lady wife are “entitled” to at least a month in five star accommodation in Bermuda. At our expense of course. After all they have been through.


    Johnny boy well done. Milk the system until it bleeds and then ride it. What a hero of the Republic we have here. I am myself am above Politics and therefore can not comment any further. Not to worry the sheep shall put them back in the trough , next time round. Serves us all right I suppose? Not me . The Guillotine would be too good for them.


    Re Bock 14.. yes, porn.. obviously not nasty hard core stuff [ not that thats any excuse ], this showed up on a satellite pay per view billing later presented to the claims authority.. As much as i would like to give you more detail of the case, we [ well I, ] were [ was ] being bombarded with [ treated to ] a new expenses claim each day, each one topping the one before.. It truely boggled the mind.. What with your man from FAS having dipped into the public purse [ James, i cant recall his double barreled sirname ], it looks like a case of history repeating…


    And then the motherfucking bastards went back to J’s pad and wrapped themselves up in the 11 grand fucking curtains for 1 window only, and had a great laugh at all of us.
    Sorry folks but I am just seething with anger this charming crisp evening, spent most of to-day in the hospital where i witnessed something that has brought me to a place of total fucking despair about this joke system, i tried my usual long fast walk when i got home………..no did’nt work, i’m fucking furious, know i’m ranting, too angry to even tell you what i saw, maybe when i calm down…………? if i had accidently bumped into any of those bastards this evening, i swear i would have had to be either arrested or straitjacketed. What they are doing to this country is beyond criminal.


    We were listening to claims that lovely Johnny didn’t gain anything personally, didn’t do anything wrong etc… etc…
    My 12 year old said, out of the blue, “He might not have gained, but the tax payer definitely LOST”.
    Out of the mouth of babes, eh?
    He was spot on.
    He saw what lovely Johnny, FF and the supporters down in Kerry will never see.


    Yeah. There’s no personal gain in living like a king, is there?


    Now ,Now Folks , His most Nobel Majesty John by the Grace of God and the will of the People King of Kerry and first Lord of Leinster House has decided to relinquish the chair. At a cost to the Tax payer of a mere €125,000 over two years. Given his apparent lifestyle Himself and his missus would be through that in a week. Not to worry his subjects shall re-elect him next time with a landslide. They shall not allow “that shower of whoers up in Dublin “ to put down one of their own.


    My comment: My experience of life in Ireland (76years). Old people have terrible things to say, if only we had the energy to say them. This is a very dishonest country. How could anybody spend all that money.?
    I could understand having a “splash” for one turn but not on a regular basis. I was reared in Ireland and the Irish culture ( home, school, state) injected guilt into every vein of my body. How did he avoid that injection? I would like to know the answer. He was reared in Kerry where a lot of people lived off the wild birds’ eggs as part of their regular diet along with the sea weed. Not a thing wrong with that menu. I wonder did he eat wild birds’ eggs!! If he did, he should know better. If he didn’t, he might have to eat them on some future date.
    To conclude ” no fly flies higher than the fly which rises from the cow dung “


    “no fly flies higher than the fly which rises from the cow dung”, awesome. +1

    Don’t suppose you can give us that as gaeilge?, I would love to know what it is.


    Frank; Thank you, that is so insightful, Its someone like you that this country needs to listen to, as per my post last night, i was so full of useless rage that left me exhausted and got me nowhere, This morning i read your post and felt so much better that there are people like you out there.
    I think we are so shocked and appalled at what is going on, Previously we have, as a nation been whipped into shape via guilt, ignorance and fear, Now we appear even more helpless in spite of addressing and rejecting the causes of those feelings, we are educated, well housed, technology savvy, well travelled, fairly sophisticated, so why why why are we allowing this to happen ?
    Has that guilt you speak of permeated the veins of generations to such an extent that now we stand by while our elderly wise population, our young sick and vulnerable are forced back to foraging for survival in a country that looks like it has no sustainibility in its economic , health or social reality.
    Every single day a new shocking reality of greedy careless vipers comes to light, every day the media and blogs like this one are saturated with our revulsion and fraustration, we talk the talk so well, but are we no longer able to walk the walk.
    I am no different to anyone else, I too don’t know what to do next, but i do know that everything that has pushed this country forward has been taken and used to furnish the ignorant desires of the people of whom we trusted to wear the mantle of the future, there was no future for them, just the steady indulgence and disgusting consumption of what they had only dreamed of as the stories filtered down from their forefathers while gathering those wild eggs and seaweed, What was their moral code “go forth my son and grab what you can from your fellow man and fuck the begrudgers ” that must have been the mission statement ringing in their ears as they begged their neighbours to assist them enter the doors of Leinster house.
    I sincerly hope you keep tapping your keyboard !
    Incidently i could’nt care less whether or not JO’D retires or not, it’s too little too late, just pay the money back, just pay back what you beg borrowed and stole because it was’nt yours it was ours, It was for me the survival of my grandchild, how dare you John compromise her future and the future of this nation, I don’t know whats next but some way some how i will not allow this to happen.


    It seems the Bould O’Donohue will receive a severance payment 75% of his salary (7,800 per month) for the first six months, this will reduce to 50% for the next 12 months and finally 25% for the final six months. This , of course, is ON TOP OF HIS FUCKING TD’s SALARY !!!!! And who decides these severance terms for our hard working TDs ? Yes, you’ve got it in one, it’s the TDs themselves ! Wouldn’t you just love to able to decide the terms of your employment. There’s a storm a-brewing, dust off the guillotine


    I dunno, I’m a bit conservative in my tastes. I’ll stick to the Country Kitchen on Gerald Griffin Street which serves the above for €7. Mushrooms are not included.


    i don’t know how in the name of hell can martin cullen call politics a profession, they are having a joke if they call themselves professionals, what do they profess to be professional at? the delivery of third world standard hospitals, a wrecked economy, an education system in dire need or funding, the wastage and golden handshakes given to wasters of public money. if thats professionalism they should be shot.


    I am here in the states and people are eating out of skips, so the middle classes are the new poor. I know it
    does not help anyone, my parent live in Ireland and they say it is so dreadful there, it is the same here.
    No jobs, food prices 3x what the were 3 years ago, organic food is so expensive, you can eat here if you eat dirty food like mc etc.That is why they are all so obese. The water here is full of flouride, and metals.The banks are literally stealing money from people in sly charges to pay back the bailout and repossessions are just out of control.
    Who invented work just so that we could pay taxes? Throw out the TV, time for a revolution.
    Rant over. But, it too makes my blood boil, when are we going to say enough is really enough and end this slave existence?


    Re. “No fly flies higher than the fly which rises from the cow dung”
    Ref. Steve (24) I haven’t got this …. as gaeilge just now. Will talk later
    Ref. Norma (25) Great reading!!
    I can’t write at the moment. I am too hungry!! It is the truth.
    Frank Conry (23)

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