Barfly: Kavanagh's The Temple
71 Upper Dorset Street, Dublin 1. Telephone: 01 8788308
Mooching down Dorset Street towards Croke Park -- or, if you're a real sucker for pain and suffering, Tolka Park -- you could easily pass Kavanagh's The Temple without really noticing it.
That would be your loss. Located at the top end of one of the northside's most multi-cultural thoroughfares, this sprawling boozer is a proper institution. Wall-to-wall mahogany testifies to an early-90s make-over, but, in character, the place feels far older than that.
In fact, in its current incarnation, Kavanagh's has been trading for 33 years. It was in 1977 that Donal Kavanagh purchased the premises from a Mary Sheery and gave it is present name. Tragically, he passed away suddenly in 1986 -- leaving widow Maureen and son Denis in charge. To this day, you'll still see members of the extended clan pulling pints.
There is also an emphasis on high-class dining -- Sunday dinners are especially popular. But it's on big match day that Kavanagh's truly comes into its own. And, unlike certain city-centre pubs we could mention, the owners' love for the GAA goes beyond mere lip-service intended to pull more punters in. As the paint scheme outside makes clear, this place is true blue to its boots.