Heineken back on Wetherspoon’s menu - but not in Ireland

UK pub chain resolves row with Heineken group but certain drinks are still off the menu in Ireland

UK pub group JD Wetherspoon has resolved its row with Heineken International, and the Dutch brewing company's products are to be put back on the menu at the group's 926 pubs across the UK and Ireland. However, while Beamish and Fosters will be available to Irish drinkers, neither Murphy's nor Heineken will be served in Ireland.

As part of the agreement announced on Monday, Wetherspoon will start serving Heineken, Fosters, Kronenbourg 1664, Strongbow, John Smith’s Extra Smooth and Amstel at its UK outlets again. However, while Beamish, Fosters and Symonds Ciderwill be put back on the menu at the chain’s Irish pubs in Blackrock and Dún Laoghaire, Irish drinkers won’t be able to sup on a pint of cut-price Heineken or Murphy’s, as the agreement does not extend to these brands.

"We are pleased to have reached agreeable commercial terms with Heineken. In the Republic of Ireland we will serve the three Heineken products at prices in line with our other products," said commercial director Paul Hine in a statement.

In December last year, the UK group controversially dropped Heinken and Murphy’s stout following a row over the supply of beer to its new Dún Laoghaire pub.


The company, which operates 926 pubs in the UK and Ireland, had claimed that the Dutch brewer refused to supply Heineken lager, the Republic’s biggest-selling draught beer, and Murphy’s to its newly revamped Forty Foot pub in Dún Laoghaire. Wetherspoon had been selling Heineken lager and Murphy’s at under € 3 a pint in its other Irish pub - The Three Tun Tavern in Blackrock - substantially undercutting the € 5 price usually charged in Irish pubs.

At the time, Wetherspoon said Heineken demanded personal guarantees from chief executive John Hutson in order to supply any other products to its newest Irish outlet.

The chain, which has plans to open 30 outlets in the Republic as part of a major expansion drive, does not serve Guinness either after a disagreement on price with drinks group Diageo.

JD Wetherspoon will shortly open a further four outlets in Ireland in - three across Dublin (Swords Blanchardstown and Camden Street) and one in Cork city.

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan is a writer specialising in personal finance and is the Home & Design Editor of The Irish Times