Food & Drink

The Lime Tree in Limavady is a terrific restaurant that you have to visit - Eating Out

The Lime Tree Restaurant may not have changed its name to Eden but the food is still heavenly

Lime Tree The Lime Tree Restaurant in Limavady (Margaret McLaughlin Photography / 07711 932889)

The Lime Tree Restaurant,

60 Catherine Street,


Co Derry,

BT49 9DB

028 7776 4300

The evening did not start well. My wife called and said she had to work late, so wouldn’t be able to come out to eat with us. I was fine with that. I mean, it wasn’t like I was going to miss dinner.

My daughter and brother, however, didn’t take it so well, and sulked all the way from Derry to Limavady. Turns out they prefer her to me, and only tolerate me for my wife’s sake.

So we weren’t the cheeriest of trios when we turned up at the restaurant. I was nursing hurt feelings, while they stared at the table’s empty fourth chair, as if willing my wife to fill it.

Thankfully, we were distracted first by the menus, and then by the food itself, which was so good that we all forgot she wasn’t there.

Let’s start with the bread. This is just standard restaurant practice, isn’t it, to bring out a plate of bread before the food arrives? So no big deal there.

This is a lovely place – a brief menu focused on high quality food in a lovely, cosy, warm, family environment

What was a big deal was how good it was. Deep, rich, soft, and fresh, with proper butter, not some fancy, whipped-up stuff. The bread was devoured, and the message received: this was a place that took what it did seriously, and knew what it was doing.

Which was confirmed by my daughter’s sausage and mash. No afterthought here, no thinking we can give the kids anything. Beautiful, meaty sausages, smooth, creamy mash, and full-of-flavour gravy.

The skin on my cod could have been a bit crispier, but the fish itself was perfectly cooked and nicely seasoned. The sauce it came in was delicate and gentle, with a nice hit of lemon, and some sharpness from the capers.

My brother always orders either chicken or a burger, so his choice of duck came as a surprise. It’s a choice he might well make again. Perfectly pink slices of delicious, melt-in-the-mouth meat, with spiky pickled onions and a rich, syrupy, sweet, sharp cassis jus.

The chips were great – crispy, soft, sweet – but we could have done with more, not because the portion wasn’t generous, but simply because we loved them. Good, crunchy vegetables, too, and a nice variety, even though the cheese sauce on the cauliflower was a touch meagre.

I’m not the world’s biggest brownie fan, but I really enjoyed this one. It wasn’t too gooey, so conversation remained possible, but it was gorgeously chocolatey, with nicely biteable chocolate chips, a touch of toffee, and a crunch and a saltiness from the cashews.

Really good, especially with the keen mint of the ice cream. My brother was pleased with his pudding. The sponge was light and sweet, run through with a variety of distinct fruits, and the custard was so good we had to ask for another pot.

Faults? Well, maybe the service was a little… not slow, exactly, but relaxed, say, but no complaints other than that. This is a lovely place – a brief menu focused on high quality food in a lovely, cosy, warm, family environment.

The Lime Tree Restaurant in Limavady (Margaret McLaughlin Photography / 07711 932889)

One thing, though. There’s some confusion about the name of the place. For years, it was the Lime Tree. When the new, current owners took over, they tried to change it to ‘Restaurant Eden’. They had a couple of false starts, with Covid followed by ill health, and then they found that, for whatever reason, changing the name wasn’t worth the bother.

It still says Restaurant Eden on the Facebook page, but they’ve decided to stick with Lime Tree. Shame, because I had a truly hilarious paradise lost joke lined up, and working in the lime tree of knowledge proved too much of a stretch. I can’t even say I had the devil of a job finding it.

Anyway, no matter what the name is, it’s a terrific little restaurant that’s well worth a visit. Call it whatever you like, just make sure you call it, and soon.

The bill

Roast Greencastle cod fillet, Atlantic shrimps, lemon, baby capers, brown butter, soft herbs

Crisp breast of Silver Hill duck, pickled pearl onions, rosemary, jus of cassis

Child’s sausage, mash, and gravy

Chips and seasonal vegetables

Apple, apricot, and blackberry sponge pudding, custard, vanilla ice cream

Warm pecan and caramel chocolate brownie, mint ice cream

Child’s ice cream with caramel sauce

Diet Coke - £2.40

Coca-Cola – £2.60

Two courses with sides for £32.00

Child’s two courses for £10.00

Total: £79.00