There’s always that one place that you become obsessed with, that one place you constantly want to visit, peruse and hopefully take a little piece home. The Considered by Helen James section of any Dunnes Stores location is just that for me right at this moment in time. I have to be honest that I’ve become completely obsessed with the range James has created and having just signed a new apartment lease here in Dublin, I'm eager to get my hands on every single bit of the range for my new abode (considering I am starting again with absolutely nothing having just moved back from Melbourne).
The range consists of everything from dinnerware, kitchen utensils, preserves and bakeware to some of the most deliciously scented candles currently on the market. All of which are considerably more affordable than one would expect from products of such high quality. This is accessible luxury from a retailer than traditionally hasn’t been associated with that term; but over the years since I first moved to Melbourne I have noticed that with the Paul Costelloe, Carolyn Donnelly and Helen James collections – Dunnes have struck with a chord with those looking for high quality stylish products without the hefty price tag.
The team behind Considered also extended their evident talents towards the opening of the Considered Café on Drury Street. Situated next to Kaph and Cocoa Atelier, its right next to some rather strong foodie hotspots in the capital however this place smashes both of them out of the park in terms of coffee, food and those little sweet treats that we all deserve every so often.
I have been visiting the café every few days for lunch over the last three months as its just a stones throw from my office in the city. Beautifully presented the café is full of light, beautifully merchandised and has enough seating to make it cosy without being overcrowded. Upon entering its hard not to miss the large island in the centre of the retail section that is covered with large bowls of freshly prepared salads, dishes full of cakes such as flourless polenta, orange and almond cake, flourless chocolate cake or traditional homemade biscuits.
Each day there is a different soup available and the selection of sandwiches that are on offer differ from time to time. Over the last few weeks I have had the opportunity to try the carved ham, cheese and braised leek, the turkey with bulger wheat, soups such as the tomato & basil and the mushroom and celeriac as well as the flour less chocolate cake. All of which are beautifully presented upon receipt. The team at Considered really understand their target audience and that one initially eats with their eyes, so everything is executed perfectly.
What I really love about this place is that firstly, Helen James has a great eye for detail. She is obviously very talented from a retail perspective as the range she has designed for Dunnes Stores is sensational, but that eye extends further to the café as well. The food is without doubt the star of the café, as it should be. The coffee is excellent and far excels that of which is sold next door in Kaph or Fallon & Byrne nearby and the service is attentive and extremely friendly. I literally leave this place happier than when I walk in first and that my folks doesn’t happen all that often if I am being honest. Helen James & Dunnes Stores, thank you.
35/36 Drury Street