Irish Pubs and Folklore 2016 Day 1 Dublin #cietours #ireland #TourismIreland #dublin #teelingwhiskey #galwaybeer

Ireland 2016
CIE Tour-Irish Pubs and Folklore
March 19-26, 2016

Friday March 18-Saturday March 19
We dropped off Riley at Willow Farm and head to Boston-Logan. Travel to the airport was uneventful. Parked the car and hit Durgin Park for dinner before our overnight flight to Dublin. We saw the CIE group in the airport but we didn’t book our air with them so we needed to get our own transport to the hotel.

We meet Dermit and head toward the taxi. Dermit parked illegally and convince the copper not to give him a ticket. He drove us to the hotel, giving us a brief tour of the city streets near our hotel. Like most Irish, Dermit was quite a storyteller. Our folklore part of the tour had begun.

We got to our hotel, the Ballsbridge Hotel, on Pembroke RD right near the Aviva Stadium. Our hotel was apparently rugby central for the Scotland versus Ireland match (last March we were in Scotland for the Ireland vs. Scotland Rugby match!) Our room wasn’t ready so we went to Roly’s Bistro for a quick bit to eat.

We passed the American Embassy; nice building; I snap a few photos.

At Roly’s Jay ordered an omelet with café American and I ordered a fruit plate and a café mocha. The place was small and quaint. We spoke with an older Irish couple on holiday about American Politics. I had on my Bernie 2016 tee and we all agreed that it would probably be Trump and Clinton in the fall. They seemed concerned about a Trump Presidency. We told them we lived in Vermont and could head to Canada if need be.

After breakfast we thought we’d check on our room again, before exploring the city and they had one for us. Room 334. The lobby is insane with tour groups and sports fans. A quick nap and shower and we’re in the lobby for 2 p.m. to meet our tour group-rugby fans are everywhere! We are introduced to Dennis O'Sullivan our coach driver/tour guide for the week. He handed us over to our city tour guide and coach driver for the afternoon, Dougie and Stoney.

First stop, the newly opened Teeling Distillery. They are bringing back whiskey to Ireland and to Dublin. They just won a bunch of awards. Read about them here. We get to meet John and Deirdre, the owners whose sons now run the business, they shake hands and thank everyone for visiting the distillery.

I volunteered to taste test three varieties: Bourbon/Whiskey/Whisky. The Scotch Whisky-too peaty for me, Maker’s Mark-American Bourbon (OK, not great) and the Teeling 5 year oak-very smooth.

We’re told that Teeling teamed up with Galway Bay Brewery for a special beer, Two Hundred Fathoms (which launched on March 3) an Imperial Stout aged in Teeling Whiskey barrels. Rumor has it that Galway Bay will give Teeling back those barrels and Teeling will age their whiskey in them for a special whiskey. Sounds very interesting. Might just have to go back to try this Whiskey aged in whiskey barrels that aged an Imperial Stout beer.

Back to the hotel we meet Dennis for our tour briefing and welcome cocktail or beer before heading out on our own for dinner. The rugby match is on the TV in the group meeting room and every TV in the hotel lobby and lounge.

Jay and I bolt for The Gasworks (A Galway Bay Brew Pub) on the Grand Canal near Aviva Stadium for dinner. Jay gets the Stormy Port and tries the Chocolate Stout-Buried at Sea. Unfortunately no dinner is being served at the pub because of the big rugby match but the attached hotel is serving a buffet style meal. Jay gets fish and chips and I get Chicken Curry. Both were delicious. The Gasworks allows beers to leave the pub for the restaurant so we’re quite happy.

We leave the pub with 10 minutes left in the match, Ireland is up 35-20 so we hustle back to the Ballsbridge before the fans let out. Lots of Scots wandering the street. Kilts and all.

A quick check of email and downloading of the day's pictures and it’s off to bed. 

Alarm set for 6 a.m. Luggage outside the room for 7:15 a.m.-painful!

More images from Dublin:
More Tour images:
More Travel images:

Next up Guinness Brewery Tour-this was schedule for Friday March 25 but it's Good Friday and the pubs are closed in Ireland (pubs close on Christmas Day and Good Friday!) so we're scheduled to tour the brewery at 9:30 on Sunday morning.

Guinness the Breakfast of Champions!

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