I was feeling a lot better the next morning so we decided to take advantage of that and head to Guinness to do a tour and tasting. Once you turn the corner and you’re on the street front of Guinness, horse and carriages are lined up and it looks like an old Irish movie scene. The whole place was a production, they have 7 stories to their building which makes up the shape of the world’s largest pint glass and to tie it all together they must hire marketing geniuses. They work through the whole process of brewing the beer, give you a small taster while describing the exact three step process to properly drink a Guinness, have endless merchandise, three restaurants (which we had the most delicious Irish Guinness stew), a cafe, and at the tippy top of the building there is the Gravity Bar, where you get your very own pint of Guinness and get to enjoy an all glass panorama of Dublin. It was well worth the money, and definitely lived up to the hype. You could say I’m a Guinness fan now (Scott already was, it’s all he drank in Ireland).
It was particularly rainy while we were in Dublin, but it seemed to fit the Irish scene. I kid you not, Dublin looks exactly how you would picture an Irish town, pubs, streetcars, old castles and buildings, gingers. To keep up with the local culture, we decided to take a nap before we headed out to the pubs for the evening. On our way to the Temple Bar (most famous drinking area in Ireland) we grabbed a burrito to pre-game the bars. If you know me well, there’s nothing more “Hali” then a burrito/snack/(or better yet pizza) in hand on the way to the bars.
We checked out the most iconic bar, Temple Bar, and walked through the maze of people and bar inlets, there were subsections of the bar I couldn’t even understand, it was easy to get lost in there. Every pub had some sort of live music so we bounced around, but the one we liked most and kept coming back to was on the corner towards the end of the busy street called, The Auld Dubliner. This place had the best music and atmosphere, by far. Both nights we went they had a local guy singing mash-ups of top hits from the last twenty years and everyone was able to sing along and dance. We had the best time belting out old and new songs.
The next day was a similar thing except we went to the Jameson distillery and began our bar evening with nachos AND a burrito. Anyways, the Jameson distillery tour was even better than that of Guinness. At Guinness we were on a self-guided tour, but at Jameson we got our own tour guide who was hilarious and quick-witted. We were walked through the history of Jameson, got to do a whole taste test comparison with Irish, Scottish, and English whiskey (of course Jameson was the crowd favorite), and we even got to enjoy a free drink at the end of our tour in their elegant bar. A production, much like Guinness, but with a more local feel. We finished our time in Dublin with a trip to the pub to listen to some local Irish tunes and sing-a-longs and then we were off early the next morning to Amsterdam. A short, but very sweet trip to Ireland.