Insider Tips

Cocktail Bars Dublin: It's All in the Mix

By Visit Dublin

5th January 2019

Whether you’re looking to sip on a Pina Colada in a swanky hotel, step into speakeasies of the past or slurp down a Mint, the capital’s cocktail bars have you covered. Some tourists are under the impression that upon arrival in Dublin you immediately surrender all hopes of anything in a highball in favour of pint after pint of Guinness. As the recent influx of top-quality cocktail bars has shown, there is a plethora of more upmarket options available...

If you’re a diehard cocktail fan who won’t take ‘Jägerbomb’ for an answer then there are some exciting watering holes to choose from in Dublin's fair city. We suggest you begin by sampling a cocktail that is quintessentially Irish. Head to Bar 1661 on Green Street where you'll find a menu packed with vintage Irish whiskeys and superbly crafted cocktails featuring Ireland's traditional spirit, poitín. It's no coincidence that the Irish word for hangover is póit, so be warned!

Give The Blind Pig a call and you’ll be escorted to a secret location where award-winning mixologist Paul Lambert has created his very own speakeasy with an emphasis on great drinks paired with good, prohibition-era manners. In that same spirit of secrecy, try knocking on the inconspicuous door of the Vintage Cocktail Club and you’ll find an impressive menu with everything from punchbowls to strong shorts. Around the corner you can kick up your heels at The Liquor Rooms, a basement bar that’s bringing back the ambience of the 20s as everyone takes to the dancefloor while sipping from coupes. Fade Street’s No Name Bar also plays on anonymity – though by now its excellent range of cocktails is one of the city’s worst kept secrets.

If all that drinking is making your head spin, why not pair your cocktail with a meal? Over at 777 the food of choice is Mexican and the spirit of choice is tequila. Nothing washes down taquitos better than a margarita, and if you want a little extra spice try their Violencia Rojo. A quick jaunt out to the seaside suburbs will bring you to Kinara Kitchen, a Pakistani restaurant that’s also making use of Paul Lambert’s mixology mastery. Back in town, Hang Dai on Camden Street is another place you'll find a poitín-infused cocktail, along with a delicious menu of Chinese food and a generous serving of funky disco music. This is a great option if you're looking for Instagram-worthy surroundings - you'll be seated in a retro-style booth that feels like you're on the top deck of a bus. 

If the weather permits,  you may want to pair your cocktail with a view over Dublin Bay on the rooftop terrace of  the swanky Marker Hotel. Both the Morgan and Dylan Hotels also offer the chance to soak up stylish surroundings, whether you happen to be staying there or not. For some old-world charm, head to Peruke & Periwig on Dawson Street to enjoy an award-winning cocktail menu and plush Victorian decor that will make you feel like you've gone back in time.

If you're looking for all the deliciousness of your favourite cocktail minus the alcohol, you're in luck. Head to Capel Street's The Virgin Mary, a newly opened bar dedicated solely to non-alcoholic cocktails. There you'll find all types of tasty tipples that are kinder to both your waistline and your wallet. We recommend the Heat Wave - MeMento aromatic blend, Green tea, watermelon, lime and za'atar. So refreshing!

On the ground floor of Ranelagh's Devlin Hotel you'll find Americana Bar, where some of the best bartenders in Ireland serve up expertly crafted cocktails and even bottled cocktails, if you're open to trying them. Expect modern cocktails that use "cutting edge culinary techniques", and enjoy soaking in the hotel's rather chic decor.

Finally, if you’re part of a gang who are more concerned with a hanging-out atmosphere, set your stall up at the Bernard Shaw and grab some great cocktail deals or head to their sister club Wigwam which opens until the wee hours. Powerscourt Centre watering hole Pygmalion is also a top spot to get your drinks on ice.

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