Peddler’s Daughter serves up Irish comfort food

With its understated décor and kicked-back atmosphere, The Peddler’s Daughter, located at 48 Main Street, Nashua, stakes its reputation on serving great pub fare with few of the pretenses.

Owners Michael and Mags Conneely grew up in the restaurant industry, and yes, they’re Irish and it shows – from the food to the surroundings.

The room itself offers small intimate tables, seating in the middle of the dining area, or hidden off to the side, like private dining quarters.

Their menu is relatively simple while still offering a host of authentic Irish food with their own local twist. The prices are modest.

Patrons adorned the seats around the bar as Europop music played through the sound system. Ironically, no U2 but songs by Soft Cell and Big Country (the latter, a Scottish band) lofted above the busy room.

It probably goes without writing that their beer selection is extensive, from simple brews to Irish standouts. And there’s plenty of Irish whiskeys to sample.

We tried some a few appetizers, including a Scotch Egg (a hard-boiled egg wrapped in Irish sausage, rolled in panko crumbs and deep fried- great with mustard) and an order of chicken wings finished in with a maple and Guinness stout BBQ glaze. Messy, but worth it.

Other curious starter finds included Irish Nachos (think Kettle chips), and vegetarian flatbread featuring basil pesto, roasted tomato, corn, peppers, zucchini and goat cheese.

Our server was efficient and attentive, and our food arrived promptly.

We tried the traditional beer-battered fish and chips: fresh, white flaky haddock and hand cut fries, served with the peddler’s housemade ketchup and tartar sauce. The kicker: the whole thing is served, wrapped in a newspaper (the comics, from The Telegraph, to be exact).

The Ped’s corned beef sandwich featured big eye swiss, Dijon and whole grain mustard on Pullman bread, was the perfect antidote. Other sandwiches included a turkey pastrami Rueben with house cured turkey pastrami and spicy thousand island cole slaw; and an Irish Cuban -roasted pork, corned beef, picks, Irish curry mayo and swiss on a pressed baguette.

The Peddler’s Daughter isn’t coy about their burgers, either. The Hangover, speaking of antidotes, features a fried egg, bacon and cheddar; and the Caprese Burger reinvents itself with mozzarella cheese, basil pesto and beef steak tomato, finished with a balsamic reduction. Perfect and plentiful.

The desserts are clever whims of the chef: the bread and butter pudding has caramel sauce and fresh whipped cream; and the chocolate lava cake is everything you’d expect, served with vanilla ice cream.

A landmark on Main Street, the Peddler’s Daughter succeeds where other imitators have failed by keeping up appearances while not slacking off on dependable food and service.