Resourceful person of dubious character.
15.07.2017 - 23.07.2017 18 °C
(Title of the blog is also a beer)
Well we brought yesterday evening to a close with a fabulous Indian dinner (the food here has been great we have tried everything from Sushi to Pizza) and the continuation of our quest to visit all 20 of the pubs listed in “20 Things to do in Dublin before you grab a Feckin’ Pint” (fabulous guidebook). We started with Cobblestone’s, not on this list but on Bourdain’s and a recommendation from our cabbie on the way from the airport. Cobblestone’s is a small traditional Irish pub with free music (actually like a jam session) every night.
Random Musicians gather in the reserved area at the front of the bar and play traditional Celtic music (lots of fiddles, banjo’s, flute like instrument, guitars). Was a really fun place to catch some traditional tunes.
From Cobblestone’s we headed back to the south side of the river to McDaid’s, once home to Dublin’s morgue. McDaid’s was a frequent stop for the likes of Brendan Behan, Patrick Kavanagh, Flann O’Brian (well known Irish writers essentially who I think were basically drunks because they frequented a lot of watering holes). The bar had really high ceilings and the oddest toilets I have ever encountered. Anyone who knows me knows given my tiny bladder I am a self-proclaimed expert on toilets. McDaid’s actually has toilets that are designed to fit in a corner (I wish I had a taken a picture). The tiniest bathroom fitted with two stalls and two sinks seemed unconceivable but this place managed to make it fit and comfortable.
We crossed the street (literally) to Bruxelles, which has been a pub since 1886 but only in its present state since 1973 when Ireland joined the ECC. It had a much more lively (or drunk, take your pick) crowd listening to the loud rock music. It was said some of its patrons include Oasis, Iron Maiden, Snow Patron, 50 cent and so on. The bar is big with one large room upstairs and two other room/bar areas downstairs (bathrooms here were pretty typical and warrant no comment.)
A saunter down the lane brought us to the Bailey, which unfortunately (or fortunately for our livers) was in the process of closing for the evening. We did manage to pop in for a look and the original décor is all but gone and is a trendy and chic establishment now. Given the ambiance we decided the pop in warranted a check in the box as visited.
From Bailey’s we decided it was likely time to head home but stumbled across O’Donoghue’s, also on the list. One last drink. Turns out there are multiple O’Donoghue’s so we aren’t confident this is the one in the book even though there was a musician packing up his guitar, which is what O’Donoghue’s, is known for.
Thankfully for us today, our local merchant wine store was closed when we stumbled by (yes, we wanted just one more…) but the pizza joint wasn’t so we sourced a pizza headed home.
We were grateful this morning the wine store was closed last night when the alarm went off for our early morning tour of the Kilmainham Gaol (the historic Dublin prison). Kilmainham was one of the first “reform” prisons and has become one of the most powerful symbols of Irish nationalism as many of the leaders of the ‘1916 Uprising’ or ‘Civil War’ spent some time within its walls or worse were executed in its yards. It was a fascinating way to spend a couple hours this morning.
We spent the rest of the day wandering the parts of Dublin we had not walked yet (which isn’t much). We finally wandered through Dublin Castle (which isn’t really a castle as only one original part remains). The buildings itself look very British (which the Irish still hold a fairly significant grudge against it would seem, one guide commented that 2011 was the FIRST (emphasis here on how rude it was it took her this long) the Queen of England had visited since they handed over power to Michael Collins in 1922). The Irish/British relationship is even harder to understand when you think about the fact that 6 counties (Northern Ireland) remain under British rule. It’s complicated. Useless fact, there used to be a dark pool on the site of Dublin Castle gardens. In Irish Dark pool translates to ‘ Dubb Linn’ and thus, came Dublin.
From Dublin Castle we headed to St. Patrick’s Cathedral, the place where Gulliver’s travels began (yes, Jonathan Swift & Oscar Wilde are Irish not English). Seemed wildly inappropriate to be in Dublin for a week and not spend some time in St. Paddy’s.
After obtaining some cultural it was time to check another pub off the list so we headed to Doheny & Nesbitt (and walked by O’Donoghue’s which tipped us off to we were likely in the wrong one last night) for a traditional Irish lunch, baked potato with a burger topping for me (Irish nachos?) and Sheppard’s Pie for Ger (also served with a side of fries, if you don’t like potatoes don’t come to Ireland!).
After a beer and a belly full of carbs we sauntered past the Oscar Wilde monument, consisting of a statue of Wilde lounging on a large rock and two other pillars with busts covered in his quotes, my favourite “We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”
The rest of our afternoon consisted of a well-deserved nap and a stop at another local gym to burn off some of our pints. It was the coolest gym (and busiest) I have ever been in, with large windows overlooking Dublin Castle!
Tonight’s activity will be light on pub-crawling I think, we are headed to a play at a historic theater close to us. It is crazy busy in town (which says a lot because this town has been crazy all week) due to the concert tomorrow plus both Ger and I have think we have done a decent job of visiting a variety of pubs and may or may not have had enough beer for awhile.
Super excited for tomorrow, plan is to sleep in, due a couple other sites we haven’t explored thoroughly yet (maybe the Revenue Museum at Dublin Castle) and head out to the concert. We have received email notifications to expect security delays so we are prepping to walk to Croke Park again for door opening at 6 pm.
Until next time,