Becky Kelly gives us the inside drop on Dublin’s only bring your own cocktail bar and what to expect from a night in this small piece of 1950s Americana
Nights out in Dublin can get a bit repetitive. If you are a frequent visitor to Harcourt Street, the dance floors can all blur into one. From some €2 drinks in Diceys, to the haze of a late night Coppers encounter, to the winding down in Babylon or Zaytoon, we’ve all experienced deja vu more than once. Then occasionally the day comes when we decide to ditch the pre-drinks ritual and head in early for some cocktails, two-for-one Pygtails even, accompanied by conversation and nibbles. Even at that the decision can become an overwhelming struggle between the new, the familiar and not letting the savings take a nose-dive. If its cocktails you’re after, sometimes you can find yourself deliberating between cheap and not-so-cheerful or a price tag that doesn’t allow for multiple purchases.
If you find yourself in this struggle for something different that won’t make you avoid checking your bank account the next day, Drop Dead Twice is the place for you. Located on Francis Street, Drop Dead Twice is a cocktail bar with a difference. Sporting an illusive speakeasy vibe, in this bar having a sneaky naggin in your bag will not result in your demise, but rather it is the condition of your entrance. In this bar, you bring the main ingredient, your spirit of choice, and they do the rest.
Once you make your way up the stairs to the bar you will be met by classic 90s RnB music and your private bartender for the night. The decor is described on Lovin Dublin as having been “created by Mick Jennings, who is also one of the bar’s mixologists, the artwork adorning Drop Dead Twice’s walls draws inspiration from 1950s americana, heavily influenced by Saul Bass, who was responsible for hundreds of iconic movie posters.”
Once you’ve handed over your drink, simply let them know the flavours you love, scents you can’t stand and they’ll do the rest. From white chocolate espresso martinis, to coconut grapefruit infusions, their creations are pleasant and plentiful. While you also have the option to order classic cocktails such as a Cosmopolitan or a Mojito, half of Drop Dead Twice’s charm is the mystery of what drink will come next.
Open Tuesday to Sunday, their student friendly Wednesdays will only set you back €15 per person. Bookings come in the form of two or three hour slots, costing €25 or €30 respectively. Two hour slots require a naggin (Irish for 200ml) and you’ll receive up to four cocktails. Three hour slots ask for a shoulder (350ml) and provide you with as many as six cocktails.
I know the idea of starting off the night with up to 6 various cocktails and no food might seem like a recipe for disaster for most, so luckily Drop Dead Twice have that sorted too. The sharing platters included classic tasty dishes such nachos and chicken wings, with the veggie option of cauliflower wings. Alternatively the rest of their menu ranges from smaller bites to full fledged meals to accompany the range of cocktails you will experience.
Although it is located in a somewhat remote location from other bars in Dublin, it is a short walk to Dame Street and the Temple bar area. Its more intimate location makes for a relaxed atmosphere and menu-less bar creates a truly unique experience for a Saturday night date or even mid-week drinks with friends. As noted on their FAQ section of their website, if you choose to travel in a pack, vary your choice of spirits to allow the bar tenders even more leeway to concoct some creations for you and your pals. Another bonus point, any leftover drink after your visit will be given straight back to you. If Drop Dead Twice sounds like your next night out, head to their website to book your slot!