The topic of ‘the best Guinness in Dublin’ is one that tends to cause a fair few arguments.
It’s also one that tends to raise a few eyebrows from non-Guinness drinkers. “Eh, it’s a pint… they all look and taste the same, pal..!”
If you, like me, are fond of the black stuff, you’ll know well that many… many pubs in Dublin (and across the world) plop out a poor pint.
And let’s be honest – there’s nothing worse than looking forward to a velvety pint and then having a jug of slop thrown at you that tastes like a 2 euro coin.
So, in the guide below, we’ll be showing you a clatter of public houses where you’ll find the best Guinness in Dublin. Agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments below!
1. John Kavanagh’s (Glasnevin)
It’s widely considered that the Gravediggers in Glasnevin is the G.O.A.T when it comes to Guinness. The pub, which was established in 1833, is quite literally built into the wall of Glasnevin Cemetery
If you’re visiting, expect no music, no television, an old-school interior, mighty service and a pint that you’ll return for time and time again. This place ranked high in our guide to Ireland’s best pubs.
2. Brogan’s (Dame St.)
If you read our guide to 39 of the best pubs in Dublin City, you’ll recognise Brogan’s. This is a brilliant no-nonsense bar a stone’s throw from the Olympia.
If you’re in town with a group, get in here early – there are some lovely big seating areas towards the back with nice squashy couches to flake out on.
I’ve been here a good bit over the years. To be more specific, I’ve absolutely had at least 30 pints from here and can vouch for them being consistently brilliant every single time.
3. Ryan’s (Parkgate St.)
I know a lot of people out there that say the best Guinness in Dublin can be had in Ryan’s of Parkgate St. You’ll this pub a stone’s throw from the front gate of the Phoenix Park.
Now, although the pint here steals the show, the interior is also magnificent. It’s one of a number of Dublin pubs that still boasts a beautiful original Victorian interior.
Keep an eye out for the gas lamps, the traditional snugs (you’d do well to nab a seat in one of these) and the other ornate features when you visit.
4. The Royal Oak (Kilmainham)
Next up is a bit of a hidden gem in Kilmainham, not from the historic Gaol. The Royal Oak is another no-nonsense pub which has a bare decor with plenty of wood veneer.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. The photo above is testament to that (look at the bevel on the head…) There’s not a whole lot else to say about the Oak aside from that it’s nearly 180 years old and well worth a visit.
5. The Palace Bar (Fleet St.)
Photo by Gareth Byrne via Failte IrelandThe Palace is hands-down one of the best bars in Dublin. Similar to Ryan’s, the Palace has managed to retain all of its original Victorian glamour, so you can enjoy 189 years of history with your eyes while you enjoy a pint… with your mouth…
That sounds a bit weird, but anyway! I had my first pint in the Palace last year and I’ve had many more since. You’ll get some of the best Guinness in Dublin here along with top-class service.
6. Tom Kennedy’s (Thomas St.)
Tom Kennedy’s is one of those pubs that we used to nip into years ago before heading into nearby Vicar Street before a gig… back when I used to drink pints of Bulmers…
The Guinness from this place is heavily reputed to be some of the best in Dublin. Expect a smooth pint with a nice plump head every damn time.
7. The Boar’s Head (Capel St.)
The Boar’s Head on Capel Street is a solid little pub that’s often missed by those that tend to only frequent pubs south of the Liffey. I used to have a mini tradition every payday when I was working around the corner from the Boar’s Head.
I’d nip in at lunch, order a bowl of stew (served from a massive pot on the bar) and wash it down with a pint. A mighty little pub.
8. Walsh’s (Stoneybatter)
Writing this guide is killing me. The want for a pint is strong. Our next pub, Walsh’s of Stoneybatter, could be the one that pushes me over the edge!
I know a lot of people that say they’d go to Walsh’s if it was more central… this is a pint that worth travelling for (and it’s a handy 20 minute taxi from Grafton St.)
9. The Clock (Thomas St.)
The Clock on Thomas Street is another one that knocks out a memorable pint. This spot is linked to the Irish rebellion of 1803 – it’s said that the pub was a regular meeting spot for the United Irish men.
I’ve a friend that lives in the Liberties who swears by the pint from the Clock. It’s another no-nonsense pub that’s also said to do a decent bit of food.
10. Harold House (Clanbrassil Street Upper)
You’ll find the Harold House on Upper Clanbrassil Street. If you’re in search of a great pint and a decent spot to watch a match, get yourself here (look at the heads on the lads above!)
The Harold House has a cosy feel to it. I’d go as far as saying that there’s something homely about the place. I’ve been here once (last October) and the pint was delicious.
11. The Lord Edward (Christchurch)
The Lord Edward is a bit of a mad spot. I was here last year (initially just legged it in to use the toilet) and I copped a lad being presented with a glorious looking pint.
We stayed. Ordered. And I was very happy until we had to run and catch a bus. This is a brilliant little pub and the pint is top-notch. There’s a heap of seating space as well so it’s perfect for a catch-up with mates.
12. Gaffney & Son (Fairview)
I love this place. You’ll find Gaffney’s in Fairview. Savage service (the barman drops the pint down to you), loads of seating and it’s spotlessly clean.
I’ve been back here 3 times in the last couple of months. The pint is absolute perfection. The one above was the first of six on a recent visit. Consistently deadly!
13. The Confession Box (Marlborough St.)
I’d heard a lot of good things about the pint in the Confession Box over the years, but I didn’t get in to try one myself until last December. This is a proper old-school Dublin pub.
The kind of place where the heads all turn as you stroll in the door. The interior isn’t impressive like some of the other pubs in this guide, but the pint is great (see above) and the service is quality (pint dropped upstairs).
14. Grogan’s (William St.)
Grogan’s is another old reliable when it comes to a great pint of Guinness. The only issue you’ll have is finding room to stand inside (it’s pokey as f**k).
If you visit here on a fine day, try and grab a seat outside. This is the perfect place for enjoying a pint while doing a bit of people watching.
15. Mulligans (Poolbeg Street)
If you read our Dublin Pub guide, you’ll have heard me rant (and not in a good way) about this place. However, the fact is that the pint from Mulligan’s is pretty damn good.
Known for its colourful history that spans over 200 years, it began its life as an unlicensed drinking venue until it began serving up pints legally in 1782. If you can, nab the little seat just to the right of the second bar and perch yourself for the night.
16. Kehoes (Anne St.)
Kehoe’s is one of the great Dublin pubs. And it’s home to some of the best Guinness in Dublin. First licensed in 1803, it stands as a Victorian shrine, its interior decked out as it was after its 19th-century renovation.
I drink in Kehoe’s quite a bit. I’ve found in the past that the pints downstairs are far tastier than the ones upstairs. The heat upstairs can also be a pain.
17. The Stag’s Head (Dame Court)
The Stag’s Head is one of my favourite ‘summer pubs’ in the city. If you finish up work on a sunny day, get yourself here, grab a pint, and find yourself a bit of standing room outside.
I’ve had many great pints from here over the years. I’ve also had a handful of bad ones (on recent visits). If you can, try and secure yourself a couple of seats upstairs on the ground floor.
18. Peadar Brown’s (Clanbrassil Street)
So, when we published this guide originally, we received a tonne of emails about places that we missed – the majority of mails mentioned Peadar Browns.
This is a traditional pub in the Liberties that’s a handy ramble from the likes of St. Patrick’s Cathedral and the Teeling Distillery.
I’ve been flicking through Instagram for the last few minutes looking at pints poured in Peadar Brown’s… I need a good kick up the hole for missing this place the first time around.
19. Searson’s (Baggot Street)
If you read our guide to the best snugs in Dublin, you’ll have come across Searson’s of Baggot Street before. This pub is home to a mighty snug where you can kick back and enjoy a fine pint.
Searson’s was frequented by the late Patrick Kavanagh during the 1940s and 50s (he actually mentions Searson’s in a poem titled ‘The Bank Holiday’).
The Guinness in Searson’s is top-notch. Dodge it if you can on Fridays, as it’s wedged with an after work crowd.
20. Bowes (Fleet Street)
Bowes is another spot that I was lashed out of it for missing. You’ll find this place on Fleet Street near Temple Bar, a stone’s throw from the Palace.
This little boozer has been licenced since 1880 and it’ss one of a handful of Dublin pubs that still boasts a fine old-world charm.
The Guinness here is said to be insanely creamy and, judging by the photos I’ve seen online, it’s worth travelling for.
21. J. O’Connell (Richmond St)
I first came across J. O’Connell when we did a guest post with Dublin by Pub titled the best cheap pint of Guinness in Dublin.
They raved about the pint here (and I completely forgot). I’ve been buried in an O’Connell’s wormhole for the last 20 minutes on Instagram.
The pints here look delicious. Plumps heads with cream that sticks to the glass. There are also insanely good reviews on Google!
The best Guinness in Dublin – have your say!
Have you been to a Dublin pub that knocks out a great pint? Let me know in the comments section below – Cheers!