Perfect day in Dublin 8: Why the Liberties is enjoying a moment
The Liberties are enjoying a moment.
BRUNCH AT TWO PUPS
Dublin 8 is a district on the rise. Think cool little cafés, bars and restaurants popping up all the time, along with a surge of new hotels in the works. Kick off your day with brunch in Two Pups Coffee, a hipster magnet with eclectic furniture and a cool, Bowie-esque façade. The Square Mile coffee is excellent, and the food is even better - try the avocado toast with spicy peanut butter.
How: Brunch c. €8.50; facebook.com/twopupscoffee
MAKE FOR MARSH'S LIBRARY
One of Dublin's finest attractions is tucked away just next to St Patrick's Cathedral. It mightn't hold the Book of Kells, but Marsh's Library is every bit as striking as Trinity's Long Room in its own way - with fewer jostlers at your elbow. Small, atmospheric, and barely changed in the three centuries it's been around, the library holds more than 25,000 rare books (see if you can spot those with bullet holes from 1916).
How: €3, closed Sundays and Tuesdays; marshlibrary.ie
BYO COCKTAILS AT DROP DEAD TWICE
I'll admit, I wasn't too swung with the concept when I first heard of it - why would you walk into a bar and provide the most expensive ingredient? But after trying a few of the creations from the talented bartenders (no "mixology" notions here), I was converted. How does it work? You book a session, bring a bottle with you (Teeling whiskey would be location-appropriate), and up to four cocktails are whizzed up according to your tastes.
How: €25pp for two hours; dropdeadtwice.com
DINNER AT CLANBRASSIL HOUSE
It's one of the hottest new restaurants to hit Dublin in recent years. Clanbrassil House is a neighbourhood joint and firm favourite among local Liberties foodies, with gorgeous, hearty dishes served up family-style. Unusual cuts of steak (onglet, for example) come from a charcoal grill, and honestly, it's worth a visit for the hash brown chips alone.
How: Family-style menu €40pp; clanbrassilhouse.com