I visited this pub a few years ago, but I thought that Liam would want to visit one of the most traditional pubs in Dublin this weekend. We tried to get into this pub on the Saturday evening, but they were full, so we visited on Sunday afternoon and we managed to be the first customers in for the day.
Not quite as atmospheric as the previous evening when the pub was full, but the barman was welcoming and conversational, so it all felt inviting. The barman scanned our NHS Covid passes successfully and mentioned that this was changing soon as the rules in Ireland are being relaxed next week. As I’ve mentioned elsewhere, there’s something quite convenient for customers in being welcomed at the entrance though…..
Lots of heritage here and once frequented by James Joyce, the pub has been at this Poolbeg Street location since 1854, although it has been expanded a couple of times. There’s no television or other modern distractions, although the pub does now take credit and debit cards, so there’s some progress. As for modernisation, there’s no point moving towards the craft beer market and on-trend interiors, this is a pub which is based on Guinness, conversation and crisps. OK, perhaps not the crisps, but they do sell them and I think that’s pretty much the only food offering here.
We went for a pint of Guinness each, which was reasonably priced, was at the appropriate temperature and tasted just as it should. The reviews on-line are all generally very positive, mostly mentioning the engaging service, the quality of the Guinness and the heritage of the surroundings. There have only ever been four 1-star ratings on TripAdvisor for this pub and two of them relate to a different venue with the same name, showing just how bloody useless that web-site is…. Anyway all really rather lovely and I can see why John F Kennedy is said to have enjoyed his visit here and I like the thought of him walking towards the bar.