Barfly: The Black Sheep, Capel St, Dublin 1

There’s always good humour among the punters in the Black Sheep

 

I’m in the Black Sheep on Capel Street in Dublin to try Brutus, a great new beer from O Brother Brewing in Wicklow. My luck is in – they have possibly the last keg of this great beer on tap. I know because I checked with the brewery itself and they thought all the kegs were gone.

It’s best to hunt this 9.1% double IPA in bottles from now on but finding it on tap is the kind of simple pleasure that the Black Sheep is great at – introducing you to new Irish and international beers stuffed with flavour and attitude. And they do it all with an enthusiasm and knowledge that’s hard to beat.

There’s always good humour among the punters in the Black Sheep. They come across as confident, savvy, open to new ideas and the kind of people who like change and flavour and process. Wrap that up with a great beer selection, terrific food and a friendly welcome and you have a simple strategy for a great night out. Or just a few quiet board games in the corner with a friend. It’s that kind of place: read a book, drink a beer, eat some food, relax – no one’s looking.

It’s no surprise that this is a Galway Bay Brewery bar. The nine bars in the group (two in Galway and seven in Dublin – the latest being the Beer Market at Christchurch Cathedral) have a deserved reputation for excellence.

Their own taps and the rotation circuit they employ for micro-brewers like O Brother just keeps bringing you back for more. There’s a race right now to harness all the great buzz about craft beer in Ireland and drive it deep into the heart of Irish pub culture.

Our tastes are changing and it’s leaving us hungry for more. The staff at the Black Sheep are more than ready to deliver.

@GaryQuinn_IT

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