Last week, with five free prints from Dublin-based Jam Art Factory (including ‘Dublin Pubs’ by Maxi above) on offer, we asked you to name your favourite Christmas Eve watering hole.
You answered in your tens.
But there could be only one winner
Ste: “The Goat Bar and Grill [Lower Kilmacud Road, Mountanville, Dublin 14]. Always filled with young and old all in a joyous festive mood.”
DOC: “The Hole in the wall, Blackhorse Avenue [Dublin 7] Just off the Phoenix Park this 400 year old pub it is a winter wonderlandGreat Pints Food Atmosphere The longest pub in Europe and it takes a lot of time to put up all those decorations.”
Saranne Devlin: “The Royal Oak in Kilmainham, lovely atmosphere and right beside my house so I can stumble home in the wee hours :)”
S MCNALLY: “Cronin’s Bar and Lounge in Ballinagh, County Cavan as I have very happy memories of being there with many loved ones and much loved times.”
Pookakie: “It has to be Neary’s of Chatham Street, Dublin 2. It’s the perfect setting for creamy pints after grabbing a few last minute Christmas presents. Sitting down there to finally relax after all the December madness is unbeatable.”
Joe: “I have an unshakeable love for the Dawson Lounge [Dawson Street, Dublin 2] on a Christmas Eve. Sure, there’s no elbow room to be had, shopping bags a-plenty underfoot and a stray fart could dispatch half the room…. but there’s something magic about the chats with friendly, festive strangers. Flushed cheeks and cold pints. Cramped into a tiny space with no excuse but share tables, stories and cheer with those that braved the madness of town (‘yer wan says Bono is around the corner!’) and found shelter together in that cosy cave!”
Liam Deliverance: “Stag’s Head [Dame Court, Dublin 2] has long since been my go to Christmas Eve pub, I usually cut the shopping short, opt for books for presents and if you cant’ find books then vouchers will do the job. In previous years they have been open until 10pm so plenty of time to put away a gallon of tasty Guinness to tide you over until the 26th. Season Greetings y’all!”
Elle Mc T: “Walsh’s in Stoneybatter [Dublin 8] – a grand cosy spot. Free cheeseboards on a Tuesday too so it’d brie a great shout for Christmas Eve!”
Brother Barnabas:” Surprised nobody’s mentioned Grogan’s [South William Street, Dublin 2] – the quintessential Christmas Eve pub.”
“I’m not suggesting a specific one, but rather an ideal which does exist at a few locations, and which I have no intention of spoiling their charm by listing:
A village pub where the proprietor is behind the bar and draws your pint from a barrel just below the counter.
There’s a real fire in the grate, a mixture of logs…and turf for the aroma.
The clientele are all ages and backgrounds. The solicitor from up the street is in deep conversation with a small farmer from just outside the village.
There’s a modest TV, strictly for news and major sporting occasions.
There is a complete absence of background music, except possibly a bit of shush for the news on the radio.
Any paraphernalia used as decoration are genuine local items once used in that very premises – as opposed to kitsch pseudo junk sourced from some interior decoration warehouse.
It may not open until five or six and is all the better for that. The host is well rested and fresh for the evening to come – and there’s less likelihood of a resident bore who’s been sipping since lunchtime.
A few old photos on the wall may even include yourself and a few friends…alongside some newspaper-cuttings patched with selotape and yellow with age.
There are no cutesy signs such as “A stranger is just a friend you haven’t met”.
There may be impromptu music sessions featuring some local musicians who’ll be happy to let the well-behaved join in – but there will be no amplification.
Closing time is solely at the discretion of the boss.
Now, tell me you wouldn’t like to spend Christmas evening there?”
Last week: Jam Art Today