The Boa Beer Blog is back from a five-day trip to Ireland. I’m home, fully recovered, and ready to post my beer travelogues.
TUESDAY, APRIL 23 — We landed in Dublin, Ireland early on Tuesday morning after our overnight flight from Newark. It was an easy flight, but we were tired, tense, and thirsty!
Our hotel room wasn’t ready so we settled for coffee since the pubs were closed. We killed time drinking coffee at Bewley’s, walking down Grafton Street, and scouting the Temple Bar district. By the time we got back to the Hilton Dublin our room was ready — time for a quick power nap.
Bolstered by a couple of hours of sleep, we strode out through the afternoon sun to begin exploring the pubs of Ireland. We started at Porterhouse Temple Bar, which opened in 1996 as Dublin’s first pub brewery.
Where it’s Located: 16-18 Parliament Street, Dublin 2, Ireland
When Visited: Early afternoon on Tuesday, April 23, 2013
How I Heard About It: Porterhouse Brewing Company surfaced in my pre-trip research on RateBeer.com. It stood out because they brew their own beer.
Occasion: After our long trip from Maryland to Dublin we were ready for a hearty meal and some local brew. Porterhouse was at the top of my Irish beer to-do list and the Temple Bar location was an easy tram ride and walk from our hotel.
We arrived after the lunch crowd so there were plenty of open tables in the large multi-level pub. We settled into an open table and ordered our beers and traditional Irish grub.
Beers Sampled: Porterhouse Temple Bar offered a Sample Tray – 7 oz. glasses of three different beers for only €5. After looking over the menu…
I worked through two sample trays:
- Porterhouse Red (4.2%)
- Brain Blasta (7.0%)
- Hop Head (5.0%)
- Plain Porter (4.2%)
- Oyster Stout (4.6%)
- Wrasslers 4X Stout (5.0%)
Best Beer: Tough call, but I’d have to go with the Brain Blasta, “a fulsome, winsome strong ale” according to Porterhouse Brewing Company (Confession: I’ve never heard a beer described that way and had to look it up).
I also really liked the Hop Head and Plain Porter, which was actually a Stout.
Food: For our first meal in Ireland, we decided to share two dishes of traditional Irish pub fare: Fish & Chips and Bangers & Mash. The filling pub grub was just what we needed.
Later in the trip…
THURSDAY, APRIL 25 — I only tried six out of ten Porterhouse brews on my first visit, so a return visit was in order. Instead of going back to the Temple Bar location, we went to the more convenient Porterhouse Central (45 – 47 Nassau Street, Dublin 2, Ireland).
After a guided bus tour of Dublin city, highlighted by a visit to Saint Patrick’s Cathedral, we had lunch at the bar at Porterhouse Central. I wanted to try the Porterhouse brews I didn’t sample on our first visit. The only problem was that they were out of two of the very beers I wanted to try! On the other hand, this location had a seasonal Porterhouse brew and guest taps.
I had two more sample trays, and four of my six beers were new to me:
- Temple Brau (4.2%)
- Chiller (4.2%)
- Chocolate Truffle Stout (5.0%)
- Metalman Pale Ale (5.0%), a guest draft from Metalman Brewing Company in Waterford, Ireland
The Chocolate Truffle Stout was one of the best chocolate beers I’ve ever had. It was silky smooth with an amazing chocolate flavor. It was like drinking chocolate milk!
Lunch was a shared appetizer platter of chicken wings, onion rings, cocktail sausages, chunky chips, and garlic bread. We also got an order of Prawns Pil Pil (apparently the appetizer platter wasn’t enough).
Even later in the trip…
SATURDAY, APRIL 27 — It was my last day in Dublin and there were still two more Porterhouse brews that I wanted to try. I went back to Porterhouse Central for Round 3 of Porterhouse beers. I found the Hersbrucker (5.0%) on tap. But I guess the TSB will have to wait for a future trip to Dublin…