Lotts & Co, Dublin

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“A mighty little shop with the best of everything.” William Barry grabs a basket and heads into Lotts & Co.

When brothers Barry and Paul McNerney, along with Julie Gill and John Byrne, opened Lotts & Co in a former car showroom on the South Lotts road they announced that the store would be a “Greengrocer, Butcher, Fishmonger, Deli, Rotisserie, Winery and much more all under one roof”.

The store does indeed fit a great deal into a small footprint. Aesthetically it is delightful, and there is a certain “Avoca-ness” to Lotts & Co which makes shoppers want to buy everything in sight.

The Silicon Docks are on the doorstep of the store, meaning plenty of well-paid and interested residents living in the vicinity, which made this opening a smart move. The brothers spotted an opportunity for a retail business at a time and in a place when people have become more interested in the food they eat, and it counterpoints the growing disinterest and apathy towards the multiple retailers, with their horse burgers, mind-numbing uniformity and sharp commercial practices. This disenchantment has driven people back to the independent butchers, bakers, fish/cheese mongers which are springing up again across the country. Long may it last, because people like to buy from people, not from corporations, and I know I personally like when it when the owner is behind the counter. Recently we have seen Dunne’s Stores make moves to bring some independent retailers in-house in a concession format, so could this be a case of “Can’t beat em, join em”?

This isn’t the first outing for the McNerney brothers: they are the most established operators in the Beggars Bush area with three more food businesses including Juniors Café and Deli, Paulie’s Pizza and part of The Old Spot pub. All of these have excellent food offerings, with The Old Spot, in particular, being a favorite of this writer. 

Sourcing is sound at L&C, with the Bretzel Bakery, FX Buckley butchers, Sustainable Seafood Ireland, Cloud Picker Coffee and Sheridan’s cheesemongers among others supplying much of what lines the shelves and fills the displays. Fruit, veg, sandwiches, pies and treats are all of the highest order and resident butcher Drew Kenny is on hand to advise on all things meat related while General Manager Rory English (ex Fallon & Byrne) is on board as a steady hand in the tiller. 

Similar to many of the great food stores that have gone before them, like Ardkeen Quality Food Stores in Waterford, Country Choice in Nenagh, Manning’s Emporium in Ballylickey, Lotts & Co has enriched the neighborhood in which they have opened and delighted the customers who flock to their store. 

Photographs credit Leo Byrne

12 Bath Ave Pl, Dublin 4 (01) 669 7800 lottsandco.ie