Lunch, December 2014 Originally we wanted to have Christmas Brunch at Balfes, but unfortunately they were fully booked. We went to the Cellar Bar & Restaurant at The Merrion Hotel and were lucky. They had a table available for us. The Cellar Bar is located in the cellars of the main building of the hotel. It is an 18th century Georgian house and the cellar is magnificent, looking rustic with exposed bricks, arches and very thick walls. We had a large table for two. The bar was already full, but the staff managed the crowd well. Fellow diners were other couples and families, some with very small children, others with teenagers. All of them were well behaved and the atmosphere was good. Our waitress was attentive and no matter how busy it got, she was there when we needed her. We ordered a large bottle of still water, a Red Nose Reindeer Cocktail, an Espresso Martini and a Cappuccino. The Red Nose Reindeer was a Christmas special and contained Makers Mark, orange juice, grenadine and lemonade. The Espresso Martini was made with Illy Coffee Liquor. It was delicious. The Cappuccino was creamy and smooth, so very good as well. He had a three course meal, while I had a two course. He started with leek and potato soup. It was smooth and tasty. Next came the pasta with aubergine, ricotta and tomato sauce and the steak sandwich. When ordering the sandwich I was offered fries or crisps. Since I'm not a fan, I received a generous portion of salad instead without prompting. We liked both dishes. The steak sandwich was moreish and especially delicious thanks to the roasted onion and saffron mayonnaise. Our desserts were a slice of Coolattin Cheese with condiments, mango sorbet and a glazed chocolate dome with clementine coulis. As always the dessert was the highlight. The friendly staff found also time for a quick chat, but was never intrusive. That's how we love it. The bill came in at 76 Euro (ca. 95 USD). Would we return? Yes, it was worth our time and money. Would we recommend this Restaurant & Bar to a friend? YES! Would we visit again for lunch or Dinner? YES!