Talk about “the times are changing”: Dublin’s first alcohol-free bar is set to open in the capital, next month.
The Virgin Mary Bar is set to open on Dublin’s Capel Street next month, and resident’s of the Irish capital are curious to find out what is in store.
The bar was conceptualized by Vaughan Yates (Director of the consultancy firm, 1751) and Oisín Davis (a Drinks Consultant at Great Irish Beverages). The venue aims to fill a much-needed gap in the market for those who wish to enjoy a social atmosphere or night out in the city, without alcohol playing a defining factor.
The space will mimic a trendy bar, fitted-like and kitted-out in the usual style, but will serve an original menu of alcohol-free cocktails and alcohol-free beers. The idea is to offer those the desired buzz of a bar without the pressure to drink alcohol.
The Virgin Mary Bar will be a permanent establishment and the first of its kind in Dublin.
Gap in the Market
This concept bar fills a desperate gap in the Irish market. Whilst Ireland is packed with bars and pubs on every corner, it seems that the obvious meeting point for any social gathering is a watering hole.
By inventing an establishment that still meets social needs, minus the alcohol, patrons are encouraged to enjoy all the benefits of bar-culture, without the hangover the following day.
Davis explained: “If a fellow Dubliner wants to catch up with mates after 4pm in the city but doesn’t want to hang out in a pub, the only options available to them are multi-national cafes that largely lack any atmosphere. I’m really looking forward to finally giving people an alternative.”
Business-partner, Yeats added: “When you combine this with the decreasing level of alcohol purchases in Ireland year-on-year, there is strong evidence to back up a venture that might appear at first to be quite avant-garde.”
Irish Drinking Trends
And, the duo is correct, with the relationship between people and alcohol changing, now 25% of the adult population in Ireland does not drink.
A new venture like The Virgin Mary Bar not only offers an alternative spot to not-drink alcohol, but they make it trendy, too – something which has never been done before.
With new alcohol-free beer campaigns dominating the airwaves, and it becoming more-and-more common for adults to choose to “go easy” or “sit the night out”, it seems that this bar may be entering the market at the perfect time.
A newfound obsession with healthy lifestyles and nutrition has a massive part to play in our modern-day relationship with alcohol, and, should these trends continue to define current social culture, we may start to see more alcohol-free bars popping up around the country.