In pubs and bars across the city the conversation is slowly changing from Why aren’t you drinking? To what are you drinking? Shamim de Brún cracks open some bevvies and shines a light on a new non-alcohol bar space for Dublin drinkers planning an alcohol-free start to the year.
MVP on Harold’s Cross bridge has shuttered and will be replaced by Board, a new non-alcohol space with over 200 board games to enjoy. The Virgin Mary paved the way in testing this market but sadly folded last year. However, with the peeps behind The Bernard Shaw taking this punt, perhaps it’s time has come with the added twist. Open from January 3.
Open Wednesday to Sunday, 8am – late.
29 Clanbrasil Street, Dublin 8.
Leitz Eins Zwei Zero
This sparkling rosé is like the saviour of Dry January, especially for those who dig the classic pink prosecco vibe. This non-boozy, bubbly pink magic is 100% pinot noir. The grapes soak up the party vibes for a solid 6 hours before they get the press treatment.
The Leitz family have been rocking the winemaking scene since 1744. Johannes Leitz, the captain of this ship, took the wheel in 1985 and turned that 2.9-hectare patch of earth into a sprawling 40-hectare wine wonderland. His mission? To whip up elegant, fruity, and fresh wines of the highest quality, and yes, that includes the zero-alcohol wonders.
Mikkeller Drinking In The Sun
Non-Alcoholic Wheat Ale
Mikkeller’s Drinking In The Sun is a testament to the wild minds at this Danish brewery and quite possibly the best non-alc beer on the market, at least in my opinion. They teamed up with Belgium’s De Proefbrouwerij to birth this ale that’s more unique than a three-legged unicorn.
The secret ingredient is a special yeast that anchors it with just a 0.5% alcohol to keep the beer flavour going. You can get it in indie off licences all across the city and in any Galway Bay bar.
Finally, the booze-free beer gods have answered our prayers to Saint Jude, or at least mine. The holy grail of non alcs has arrived in the form of Guinness 0.0. Nothing replaces the creamy G of a Friday in January like it. After a brief stint in 2020 (cue the recall over potential moldy beer), Guinness 0.0 returned in August 2021, now microbiologically sound. Diageo’s ‘cold filtration’ technique, akin to a beer spa day, removes alcohol through reverse osmosis.
Previous nolo attempts by Diageo, like ‘Pure Brew’ and ‘Kaliber,’ were a mixed bag, but with Guinness 0.0 take two, they’ve nailed it. Crack open a can, experience the nitrogen ‘pschhttt,’ and savour the roasted malt, chocolate, and coffee notes, plus a bitter-sweet finish. It’ll keep ya on the dry a lot longer than white knuckling through it, that’s for sure.