Just before Christmas, I spotted a very unusual sign hanging on a wall in The Cobblestone pub in Smithfield. It was an old painted advertisement for ‘Graduation Pale Ale’ which was “brewed especially for the Belfield Bar”. I put up an appeal for information on my Hidden History of UCD blog but as of yet have not been able to track down the backstory of the ale or the sign.
Today, I private messaged a Boards.ie user called BeerNut after I read a very interesting post of his on the epic Historic Dublin Pictures & Videos thread that showed he had an interest in the history of Ireland’s “lost” breweries. For the last two years, BeerNut has been collating information on Ireland’s many forgotten breweries. An aspect of Irish history that is greatly under researched. His work is available to read on the Irish Craft Brewer site.
Though BeerNut couldn’t tell me anymore about ‘Graduation Pale Ale’, he told me that Kieran from the Big Hand Brewery might be able to help. Kieran, formerly of the Dublin Brewing Company, now runs The Cobblestone, Sin É and The Dice Bar. I’m hoping he might know a little more.
A link on the Big Hand Brewery website brought my attention to a unique new service. Text Me A Drink allows people to buy drinks for their friends online. All a person has to do is insert their mate’s mobile number or email, select the drink in the bar of their choice, pay via paypal/credit card and hey presto, their friend will get a text or email which they then can show at the bar to receive their drink.
At the moment, the only pubs that offer the service are the Bia Bar on Lower Stephens Street, Brackens Cornerstone on Wexford Street, the Dice Bar on Queen Street and Sin É on Ormond Quay. 21s, Flannery’s and Buskers are coming soon. The service also has some decent deals e.g. a pint of Heineken in the Bia Bar for €3.50 or a pint of Miller in Brackens Cornerstone for €3.50.
Is it a gimick? Of course. Is a bit of fun? For sure.
All this talk of alcohol got me thinking about BYOB venues. How many are there in Dublin? I can think of only four. The dazzling Seomra Spraoi which has weekly gigs, the basement of Clarendon House which runs irregular art and music events, the RedSpace artist studio/gallery on Parnell Square and the basement karoake part of the Melody Bar on Capel Street. Are there any more?