Last night myself and a few mates decided to go on a bit of a pub crawl, it was the first night of a paid week’s holidays from work. Considering I’m saving up to do some travelling next year, I haven’t had much in the way of a holiday this year so find myself looking for ways to get the most out of Dublin when I can.
It’s inevitable that you will at some point in your life find yourself going to the same pub, with the same people to talk the same ol’ bullshit. So, a concious decision to check out some bars we’ve all walked past, but never actually gone into was made. Here’s how we fared and which came out on top.
Stop 1. The Garage
The Garage is a rather new bar situated on Essex St in Temple Bar opposite the Project Arts Center. The name of the bar is something you hear from word of mouth because there is no sign or name above the door. Red and black interiors with garage paraphenalia on the walls, it has fast become a bit of a hipster hive. There’s bit of a minimalism going on with no tables but giant wooden spools on their sides instead. Sixties movies showing on two TVs and the DJ spinning the best Motown and Rock&Roll gave the joint a great atmosphere. It’s not a place I’d stay all night and there was a bit of a lack of seating, but a nice spot all the same. Extra kudos for accepting Laser and giving cashback. Was not expecting that from a place so new / small.
Stop 2. Turk’s Head
This was a bit of a cheat as some of us had been before and others hadn’t. Tonight was Spanish acoustic folk night. The bar was packed with actual Spanish who were singing along and clogging the arteries leading to the bar. The €5 Mojitos were hit and miss with some being very sugary and others too bitter they did the job though and it was onto the next venue.
Stop 3. 4DameLane
4DameLane was my contribution to the evening’s proceedings. Having frequented the place for college class parties before I was sure it’d go down a treat with the present company. Two flame torches light the way down Dame Lane to the bar which had a fair crowd in it. The walls are adorned with the best of today’s modern pop art including Shepard Fairey and Will St Leger. There’s a great vibe and it’s a great place to have some drinks and a chat without roaring over music. The music was particularly good that night; ACDC and Van Halen both being played if I recall. Also, their €10 bottles of white wine are always a happy mistake to make.
Stop 4. Dakota
Dakota was by far the hit of the night. I’d never been before but I’d heard great things. I’d also heard of it before when Foursquare enthusiast Niall Fagan organised a tweetup to help him win his millionth Foursquare badge. The place was really, really nice. Huge booths, palm trees and delicious cocktails (I tried a black Russian and a red Russian). It may have been because it was nearing the end of the night but it really was the most enjoyed bar of the night by all. Definitely scheduled by all for a repeat visit.
We had also planned on hitting the No Name bar on Fade St but, alas, last orders had set in, so our plans were dashed. We’re planning on visiting Pygmalion, the Library Bar and getting to No Name next time. Where do you think we should include next time? What is your favourite hidden gem bar in Dublin?