Photo: Forget Patrick/Sagaphoto.com/Alamy
Dublin has emerged as Europe’s new tech center, with Google, Facebook, Slack, and more setting up shop near the Grand Canal, in an area that’s been dubbed Silicon Docks. Now, post-Brexit, banks from London are following suit. In other words, if you’re not already traveling there for work (or, you know, for St. Patrick’s Day this month), you will be soon.
Start your day simply with a big piece of toast and jam at the yeasted haven Bread 41, celebrated wholesaler Bread Nation’s café offshoot, which opened opposite Trinity College’s new business school building in 2018. Cave and order a sausage roll, too—you need protein, right?
Stroll across campus and over to the Little Museum of Dublin, located in a Georgian townhouse on St. Stephen’s Green. A tour here amounts to an hour-long standup set performed by a loquacious guide who tells the whole of Irish history while slowly leading you through two rooms jam-packed with historic signs, pictures, books, and, of course, a Bono statue.
Pop into the National Museum of Ireland—Natural History to take a gander at the Dr. Dolittle menagerie of 10,000 animals, which has been frozen in time in these glass cabinets for 100 years. Locals call it “the dead zoo,” which might not sound like an endorsement, but it’s remarkable to see all of these species in one small space.
Pay your respects to the Oscar Wilde statue in Merrion Square, and then walk 15 minutes to The Winding Stair, a homey restaurant and bookshop overlooking Ha’penny Bridge. Indulge in savory panna cotta with figs and caramelized onions, followed by roasted trout, and afterward pick up a copy of Dublin writer Tana French’s Faithful Place.
Catch a cab to The Liberties, the historic whiskey district, and Teeling Distillery, which became Dublin’s first new distillery in 125 years when it opened in 2015. On the tour, learn liquor trivia (did you know that before World War I, about 60 percent of the world’s whiskey was exported from Dublin?) and then do the four-pour Distillery Select Tasting.
The 20-seat communal table at Frank’s on Camden Street may be the city’s best place to dine solo. Chat with your tablemates over small plates such as mackerel with gooseberry and horseradish or duck liver with preserved strawberries. The wine list is mighty, but pace yourself: A nightcap awaits.
The Vintage Cocktail Club is in the beer-soaked Temple Bar area, but this swanky speakeasy, hidden behind a black door marked VCC, is a respite from all the rowdiness. Order a Pear & Mary, made with poitín (a traditional pot-stilled Irish spirit), Poire Williams, citrus, and bitters, and take a seat by the fireplace for a cozy end to a great day.