Most Dublin Pubs Expect to Grow in 2019 as Gin Trend Continues, but They’re Worried about Brexit

Dublin’s pub sector soars while Brexit looms.

New figures released prove positive with the majority of Dublin pubs forecasting growth in 2019.

As a city which is famous for its watering holes, these facts are probably not all that surprising, however, as Brexit looms there is tension in the air.

The long drawn out process of the UK leaving the EU has proved to strike uncertainty in many businesses minds in Ireland and Britain.

While Brexit’s goal posts continue to be shifted on a daily bases, businesses are sceptical of the long-term effect of the looming political change-up.

The Figures

A recent report by the Licensed Vintners Association (LVA) entitled The State of the Dublin Pub Trade 2019 outlines the projected growth for Dublin pubs throughout the year.

A promising outcome showed that 48% of Dublin pubs expect to see a growth of 1–10% this year. 18% of pubs in the capital city cited a projected growth of 11–24%, while 2% of pubs are expecting a swell which will see business increase by over 25%.

On the flip side, many Dublin pubs expect to see a decline. 10% of Dublin pubs are preparing themselves for a 1–10% drop in business while only 1% forecast a decline between 11–24%. 21% of Dublin pubs are expecting there to be no change in growth.

Dublin Pub Trends

Other elements of Dublin’s unique pub culture have been taken into consideration in this report.

It was revealed that six out of 10 pubs feature live music in the Dublin capital, while drinking trends also were established. Craft beer was singled out as being a new wave trend with over 40% of Dublin pubs offering at least six different types of craft beers or more.

Gin was also highlighted as being a major trend in Dublin bars. Where once the focal point was Guinness and Irish whiskey, now over half of Dublin bars offer at least ten various types of gin.


While Brexit looms, a very real threat hangs over the hospitality sector. A whopping VAT increase from 9% to 13.5% for Dublin pubs could potentially be swaying projected figures of growth, as business owners eagerly await their fate.

In regards to the stance on Dublin pub growth, the LVA said it is “in contrast to the uncertainty experienced by hospitality and tourism businesses based outside the capital, with difficult trading conditions being widely reported”.

Donal O’Keeffe, Chief Executive of the LVA went on to say that pub owners and those in the hospitality sector are “worried about Brexit and what impact that will have on the tourism trade… The decision to hike the hospitality VAT rate is deeply worrying in terms of our tourism competitiveness.”

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