I have a confession. I have never ‘done’ twelve pubs in a night. That said, here are a few suggestions of pubs around the country where you’re guaranteed to find a warm welcome, a roaring fire or good food. They all have fantastic beer and some of them tick all the boxes!
1) The Salt House, Galway
My favourite pub in one of the most fun parts of the country. This cozy spot has an amazing selection of beers and is always full of life. The staff are friendly and really know their beer.
2) Brewery Corner, Carlow
Here you’ll find the full O’Hara’s range on draught as well as some other fine Irish and international beers. If you’re lucky there’ll also be some live entertainment.
3) The Blind Pig, Limerick
This very cool bar has regular DJ nights and the finest of beers.
4) The Bierhaus, Cork
This bar has a BIG array of taps, guest beers on cask and a bewildering choice of bottles. It being the People’s Republic, you’re guaranteed to be included in the conversation which will largely involve slagging.
5) Furey’s, Sligo
Another cozy spot, you’ll be made feel welcome and if you don’t fancy the Irish craft beers on offer (you should) they’re also known for a quality pint of the black shtuff.
6) The Malt House, Athlone
A favourite haunt of mine, they host Athlone Beer Club meetings, there is always a relaxed atmosphere and you’ll find Black Donkey and Metalman beers on tap.
7) Don’s, Moate
I could hardly forget my local, the Bo Bristle Stout on draught is always a winner here and they have bottles from other local breweries like St. Mel’s. And you could clink glasses with me!
8) 57 The Headline, Dublin
This pub boasts the largest selection of Irish craft beer In. The. Country. They also serve delicious food.
9) L. Mulligan, Dublin
Speaking of delicious food, Mulligan’s does a line in tasty grub and has a fine selection of beers including their own Brown Paper Bag Project.
10) JW Sweetman’s, Dublin
The only brewpub in the city, has a great core range as well as seasonal specials, they will also fill a growler for home consumption which is nice.
11) JJ Harlow’s, Roscommon
This pub is great craic and you never know what beery surprises you’ll find within. Also has an open fire!
12) The Spirit Store, Dundalk
Right on the docks, this pub has large live music venue and a more intimate bar where you can take shelter from the coastal weather.
This list is by no means exhaustive but try and check out one or two of them over the festive season, you won’t regret it. Sláinte!
Simon Broderick aka Simon Says… You Really Should Drink This! Simon started his blog in September 2013. Since then he has built up a large audience of readers. He can also be found on Twitter. A passionate Advocate for Great beer, he set up the Athlone Beer Club in January 2014 and this has proven very popular with publicans and members alike in the Midlands. The future? Ireland’s second craft beer book perhaps! And a lot of beers.