Cocktail bar BAR 1661 has taken the top prize of Ireland’s Bar of the Year at the Bar of the Year Awards 2022.
The winners were revealed at a gala awards ceremony hosted by Alan Shortt on Monday, 22nd of August, at the Clayton Hotel, Burlington Road.
Now in their 17th year, the Bar of the Year Awards are the premium awards for the licensed trade and were held after a pause of two years due to Covid.
BAR 1661 Celebrates Award Wins
Along with winning the overall prize, BAR 1661 also won gold for Innovative Bar of the Year and bronze for Cocktail Bar of the Year.
Named for the year poitín was banned in Ireland, the bar opened its doors in April 2019, and aims to create a permanent home for Ireland’s original spirit.
Dave Mulligan, owner and founder of BAR 1661 said, "This is a huge reward for our team, who have worked tirelessly for over two years to bring BAR 1661 to unrivalled standards. A shared love of cocktail bars and Irish spirits drives us to be the best we can be and shining a spotlight on poitín makes it all worthwhile. Winning Bar of the Year is an amazing result for independent cocktail culture."
"When we opened in April 2019 our mission was to give our sometimes-maligned national spirit the home it deserves, to elevate Irish cocktail culture, and to create a place for locals and visitors alike," added Mulligan.
New Cocktail Menu
This September, the team at BAR 1661 is launching a new menu consisting of 32 signature cocktails, each drink created around a landmark date in the history of Irish drinks
These include the Belfast Coffee (€9), which reclaims the year poitín was banned, 1661.
The house serve is a mix of Bán poitin, cold brew coffee, demerara, and nutmeg.
1785 is celebrated with the Gibney (€14), a drink inspired by the year the tax on malted barley was introduced.
To avoid the tax, distilleries started upping unmalted barley to their mash, which led to the ‘single pot style’, giving the liquid a thickness and spiciness.
The Gibney is a mix of Redbreast 12-year-old whiskey, rum, pineapple, black cardamom, aromatised wine and olorso.
This is barrel aged on site by the team at BAR1661 in a Spanish Olorso cask.
These drinks are available from September along with a wide range of Irish-focused and world produce.
© 2022 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.