Can you keep a secret? Good, neither can I.
There is a secret pop up bar in Dublin that can be found down on Dame Lane that goes by the name of Bar 1661 for the next 6 weeks.
Side note: 1661 is the year Poitín was outlawed in Ireland.
So what is it all about, I hear you ask?
Well Dave Mulligan, owner of Bán Poitín, wants help over come the perception most people would have of the once prohibited drink, that was once known to be distilled in your granddad’s shed or a field in the back end of nowhere far from the interference of the law, by showcasing the best of Irish Poitín in the form of modern cocktails. The bar is also shining a light on local produce from such places as a farmers field in Finglas, foragers gatherings in Fivemiletown
and a distiller in Dún Laoghaire.
The cocktails are all priced at a fantastic €10, barr one, the Leprechaun Zombie, SERIOUSLY TRY IT! I’d also recommend an Emerald City Sour & The Gaeilgeoir. Also on the menu you’ll find wine, stouts and porters which change weekly but are all Irish.
One item on the menu that really stands out is a Poitín by the name of Knockeen Hills Poteen which is 90% ABV. Don’t be worried about that 90% ABV, it’s exceptional and will blow all preconceived ideas of the drink outta your head. It’s fragrant with citrus, fruit salad and ground mixed nuts. Served in measures of 7ml, try it! Thanks to Dave for bringing this one to my attention and letting me have a taste.
Bar 1661 each week will have guest speakers and bartenders. On my visit I had the legend James Goggin from Maverick Drinks presenting their Forward Drinking presentation for bar staff as well as Andy from Cask in Cork talking about sustainability, sourcing, stocking and promoting Irish produce.
Open Thursday – Sunday’s, 5pm – late for the next 6 weeks. With seating for only 35 people you’ll need to reserve a table by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, though if you want to take the risk, limited seating will be available for walkins also. The bar can be found on Dame Lane underneath the Berlin Cafe by entering the door with graffiti as seen in the first image.
Again thanks to Dave Mulligan & the team at Bar 1661 for having me down.
Until next time folks, keep safe & keep drinking whisk(e)y.
Over & out.
Jamie. Whiskey JAC