Shhh, come here.
I almost don’t want to tell you about this. The food was delicious and the shop was so lovely and quiet, almost like a secret. If you find out and tell two friends, and they tell two friends, and they tell two friends, well, you get the point. But I think Tuula would like to see you.
We have been meaning to stop into Tuula’s European Cafe for quite a while now and I’m so glad we finally did. It’s a little spot in Dublin in the same shopping center (gasp!) as a Kroger’s, Pei Wei and Hoggy’s. But Tuula’s seemed worlds away, which was very nice.
A group of eastern Europeans were sitting, drinking coffee, discussing what I can only assume was international politics outside at one of the wrought iron cafe tables in the sunshine. I took this as a very good omen. Inside, the cheerful and helpful Tuula herself was manning the counter. She is a busy woman, making all of the pretty quiches, stratas and pastries herself daily.
I chose a pick two lunch special for $9 and had the vegetable strata and the pumpkin and fennel soup.
The strata was beautiful with a lovely cool tomato fondue spooned over the top of the warm strata. The strata itself was layered with pesto, spinach, cream cheese, feta, and tomatoes. To pair with the strata, I had the pumpkin fennel soup. The tender pieces of fennel in the creamy pumpkin soup gave it a lovely freshness. The soup was topped with two gorgonzola croutons for some crunch.
Also at the table was a fig and prosciutto salad with blackberries and goat cheese. The strong goat’s cheese really stood up the sweet figs and the prosciutto was top-notch.
Although we didn’t avail ourselves of the pastries, cookies and cakes she had on display, I can see coming back here very soon for another great cup of coffee, a sweet snack and a peaceful moment to try to decipher some of the reading material available, which is right up my alley: Edible Columbus, Martha Stewart and a Finnish House and Kitchen magazine. Tuula’s also has free Wi-Fi if you’re looking for an off-the-beaten path to drink some coffee and do some work.
If you’re way up Sawmill sometime and are feeling peckish and want to stop somewhere that’s not a chain, give Tuula’s a shout, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Tuula’s European Cafe, 3856 Hard Road, Dublin, 614.923.3083