Ah the snug. The skittish joy of scoring one (not to mention in one). The relief of the direct line of communication with beseiged barmen. The abandon with which we encourage more and more friends that there really is room to pile in. The silent echoes of all the private conversations held within over the years, all the illicit manoeuvrings instigated and coordinated within those short walls. Even their slightly seedy origins – as a hidey hole for women with a quare thirst but a modicum of modesty about it – has a curious appeal.
Where’s your favourite? It’s a tough call. For years it would have been Kehoe’s hands down for me, before the management changed and set their sights on a better ‘suited’ clientele. Toner’s is still a favourite, though never after Wednesday, unless it’s before teatime. The Royal Oak in Kilmainham would probably be top of today’s list, even if the whole pub feels pure snug. (Yes, all mine are in Dublin, jackeen that I am.)
Seriously though, where are your favourites? Powers Whiskey want to know.
They launched the search for Ireland’s Best Snug last year (Toner’s came out tops) and are now looking for votes for this year’s title. Seventy snugs from around the country have been shortlisted, and voting is via the Powers website, www.powerswhiskey.com from 5–31 October with five regional finalists, as chosen by the public, announced on 2 November. A special judging committee will chose the All Ireland winner from these five finalists, with the winner announced on 15 November.
This may call for some dedicated research before we all rush out and cast our votes. Meet you in the snug.