Category Archives: Co. Dublin

Art & Heart at Grogan’s Castle Lounge, Dublin

Grogan's sign close-up

Grogan’s is near several speciality shopping centres; including the Westbury Mall

The Literary Pied Piper

The sign outside notes Grogan’s – or more officially, ‘J.Grogan’ / ‘The Castle Lounge’ to have been established in 1899, but in fact it is much more recent history that has been pivotal in shaping the unique atmosphere for which Grogan’s has become renowned. In 1972, the well-known barman Paddy O’Brien came to work in Grogan’s, having left his role in nearby McDaid’s pub. Paddy had tried to purchase McDaid’s and on being unsuccessful, severed all ties, in due course joining the team at Grogan’s. Paddy was quite a legend within the Dublin pub scene, serving and regaling a host of McDaid’s regulars and genius literary types including Patrick Kavanagh, Brendan Behan, Flann O’Brien, J.P. Dunleavy and Liam O’Flaherty. Continue reading

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The Long History of The Long Hall

The Long Hall's gilded & mirrored bar

The Long Hall’s gilded & mirrored bar, decked with a variety of whiskies & spirits, glows softly against the cascading daylight

What Bliss with a Paper & Pint!

Ireland’s plethora of fine pubs offer many a rare delight, but to those in the know, the serenity & grandeur offered up by the ornately decorated ‘The Long Hall’ of George’s Street in Dublin city centre is something truly special. This is a dark, charming bar with a relaxing atmosphere Continue reading

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Worship a Pint at McDaid’s Chapel-Pub

Guinness sign outside

A glowing Guinness sign hangs high above McDaid’s front door, flanked by tall chapel-like windows (Photo by Angelika Appelqvist)

A Great Friend or A Great Find

Even though McDaid’s has prime of place in Dublin’s city centre – just off Grafton Street, the city’s showcase shopping boulevard – it still feels like a trade secret when you slip into it for a sneaky late afternoon pint. This is how McDaid’s is best enjoyed; on the off-chance, ‘on the Q.T.’, with a drinking buddy, or without one, for a pint and a few moments of peace but most importantly, when it is not jam-packed, which it regularly is on weekend nights or during a big match. During these off-peak moments, the pub’s cavernous charm, smaller crowds and view to the street through its huge windows make it the perfect place Continue reading

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O’Donoghue’s, A True Dubliner

Outside O'Donoghue's familiar black & white exterior

Outside O’Donoghue’s familiar black & white exterior

O’Donoghue’s, Our Old Friend

O’Donoghue’s is our go-to pub. There, I said it, there’s no mystery to it. Rail, hail or shine, no matter what the occasion, O’Donoghue’s can cover it. It’s not the prettiest, the most comfortable nor the most steeped-in-history of Ireland’s pubs but by god, it is one damn fine boozer. If you’re looking simply to pop in somewhere for a drink over the newspaper or while catching the match on T.V., O’Donoghue’s is ideal. If you’re peckish, the guys there will whip up a toasted sandwich for you. If you’re after a proper, full-on night out among a lively, mixed crowd, O’Donoghue’s guarantees it, with a bustling, varied clientele heaving all the way from the old bar on one side, through the beer garden across to the newer part of the bar. Continue reading

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Toners’ strikes golden tone among great pubs of Baggot Street

Toners Pub, Baggot Street, Dublin 2

Toners Pub is a perennial fixture of the busy Lower Baggot Street social scene

200 Year Old Formula

A few plain facts point to the wonder of Toners pub of Baggot Street, Dublin 2. The pub is almost two hundred years in operation and yet it remains largely unaltered, working off the same successful formula it always has. Bearing in mind that it is within a stone’s throw of other truly great pubs, not least Doheny & Nesbitt and O’Donoghues, its longevity and simultaneous resistance to change are all the more impressive. Granted there have been a few additions over the years such as a beer garden out back and an upstairs function room, to cater for the larger, occasional crowds but the kernel of the pub is essentially unchanged, with a single television parked high in the corner, the only hint at modernity. Continue reading

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Filed under Co. Dublin, Dublin 2