If you are expecting to get our take on cycling in the UK, I hate to disappoint, but that’s not going to happen. We are on a cycle-free holiday for two reasons. First, it’s cold and we don’t fancy riding in such weather and second it’s dangerous: have you heard that they ride on the wrong side of the road here? Merely crossing the street is an adventure. I can’t imagine trying to make our way through a round about in reverse!
Last summer we went to Brussels (at the start of our trip to France) to drink Belgian beer and we had such a smashing time that we decided to visit Dublin (ahead of our trip to England) to visit the Guinness Storehouse and to drink beer and whiskey.
Since it’s my nature to keep track of things, you’ll be shocked to learn that I’ve been keeping track of every beer we’ve had. Those of you who prefer to see pictures of beautiful landscapes and exotic sights will have to wait because for the most part, while in Dublin, we saw the inside of pubs.
What follows is our timeline. We arrive in Dublin at a little after 8am local time. Although we were unable to get a wink of sleep on our flight, we are on the go. We are lucky enough to check into our hotel early in the day, so we can drop off our bags, freshen up and start racking up some serious steps for the day. The sun is actually out and we must feed the Fitbit!
Noon: Lunch at O’Donoghue’s. Half pints of Guinness Porter Draught to go along with our Irish stew and Dublin Mussels in wine and cream sauce.
2pm: Our tour at the Irish Whiskey Museum begins.
It’s very interesting, but we are sleep-deprived and struggling not to nod out during the educational part. About 40 minutes in, we hit the tasting bar and the real lesson begins.
We try 4 different whiskeys. Powers Irish Whiskey, Teeling, The Irishman and my favorite of the four, the Knappogue. All together this is probably about a shot of whiskey.
3:30pm: The Palace Bar, famous locally for having the freshest and best pour of Guinness Draught in the city. We each have a half pint and a great visit with a bartender who could have come straight out of Irish central casting!
5-6:30pm: Nap time. We need it.
7pm: The manager’s reception at our Doubletree Hotel. Complimentary beer, wine, heavy appetizers. Can’t miss it! We each have a Crean’s Irish Lager (12 oz bottle), and discover the Guinness tap when we are about halfway through.
We make a version of black and tan by adding about another 4 ounces of Guinness on top of the Creans so we’ll call it an even pint at the reception.
Totals for day one: 30 hours with no sleep followed by 90 minutes of shuteye. And 36 ounces of alcohol. 20,276 steps for me and 15,116 steps for Roger.
Day two 12:30pm: Lunch at Bruxelle’s. It’s a step away from Grafton Street, they call themselves a cosmopolitan bar, and I agree.
At our whiskey tour we learned about Irish Coffee and now we have to try one, so chalk up about an ounce of whiskey split between the two of us at lunch.
2pm: Several months ago we booked the Connoisseur’s (and can skip the line) Guinness storehouse tour.
Now we are cashing in those chips. Whatever we paid for this experience, it was worth it! We are in a private bar with a group of a dozen beer lovers. We have our own incredibly knowledgeable bartender/tour guide/Guinness expert for 90 minutes.
During this period of time we are served 4 half pints of 4 different beers followed by a full pint of Guinness Draught (which we pour perfectly ourselves).
And then we have a ticket for another full pint of Draught which we cash in after we actually tour the museum. So yes, during our 4 hour visit we each ingest 64 ounces of beer. That’s a half gallon of beer each. Fortunately, 40 ounces are only 4.2% ABV which allows us to continue to function.
6:30pm: Dinner at The Porterhouse Brewing Company. They make their own beer here, it would be an insult if we didn’t taste it. I order a 12oz glass of Oyster Stout. Roger acts sophisticated and orders a glass of Greenspot Whiskey on the rocks.
Saturday morning is exercise and prep for departure. We have to catch a bus to the airport and be on a 1:50pm flight to Liverpool. In total we are in Dublin for 56 hours. During that time we each enjoy 112 ounces (or just under a gallon…or only 2 ounces for every hour in town) of alcohol. Mission accomplished.
Apologies to those who are not beer fans. I promise future posts will feature the sights and sounds of Liverpool and London.