Sunday Jazz Brunch at The Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin.

What to do for a special family birthday celebration can be a dilemma. For once I had planned in advance, so there was little chance of being disappointed with the chosen venue. After all it was a special day as our first born was celebrating her 40th Birthday. It was scary having a child reaching this milestone so I made sure to opt for something really trendy so that the older generation could feel young! The Sunday Jazz Brunch at The Shelbourne Hotel ticked that box in style.

There were two sittings (one at 12 noon and the second at 2.15pm) for the Jazz Brunch at the No 27 Bar & Lounge in The Shelbourne Hotel. Getting all the family, aged from one year upwards, there on time was a feat and yes we arrived just before the doors of the Lounge were thrown open to diners. We were allocated a gorgeous high counter with stools located at the centre of the main bay window overlooking St. Stephen’s Green Park – a premium position to watch the world go by outside. The gleaming shiny black lacquer octagonal counter top was complimented by an over large matt silver candelabra at one end. Whilst there was not a huge amount of space for glasses, plates etc. it was definitely very stylish and trendy. Those facing towards the central bar had a view of the two superb commissioned murals of the hotel from St. Stephen’s Green. These were painted in strong vibrant colours reminiscent of filter lighting used so profusely in film making and added an art deco feel to the room; a famous haunt for Dubliners over many decades.

The Brunch: The Menu was well devised with a variety of breakfasts on offer and a roast of day. Some of our party opted for the full breakfast. Those who chose the fish and chips left not a scrap behind. I opted for traditional Roast Beef with Yorkshire pudding. Despite being warned that they didn’t do rare they still managed to provide a very acceptable rare beef which had texture and taste that lived up to its 5 star surroundings. The Yorkshire pudding was a little chewy around the edges but I forgave this minor transgression owing to the quality of the horseradish sauce which was creamy and full of flavour. The champagne was a little on the expensive side but the Prosecco on offer was good value and a great option for lunch.

There was no shortage of trained and pleasant staff on hand to assist with various requests such as changing stools to ones with backs to accommodate the younger folk in our party. The excellent Bar & Lounge Supervisor, Graham Flanagan, conducted his orchestra of staff ensuring that everything ran seamlessly; with two sittings there was no room for error and we did not feel rushed at any point during the Brunch. I had only one real quibble (rare for me!) and that was the high chair for baby, which was two feet at least below counter level. Perhaps some commissioned high chairs might be a good idea as we did have to play pass the parcel with the baby!

The Music: And so we come to the jazz itself; the very relaxing music was provided by Cary Posavitz and the Players. Their chocolate smooth repertoire was pitched at an enjoyable volume, neither too loud nor so low as to relegate it to background music.  Looking forward to another treat in the not too distant future.

The Sunday Jazz Brunch is a weekly fixture and details are available on the Shelbourne Hotel’s website.