BarSnob – Simon Lambert & Sons, and The Sky & The Ground, Wexford

BarSnob – Simon Lambert & Sons, and The Sky & The Ground, Wexford

After threatening to visit Wexford for so long, Janice and I finally made the trip down to Ireland’s sunny South East.  Probably helped that Declan from Yellow Belly, goaded us into it while we were over in Holland, at EBBC16

Wexford is a traditional harbour town, with narrow streets, and lots of history. We made the drive from home in just over two hours, but the traffic in Enniscorthy had me thirsting for a beer as soon as we got there.


Our first stop, just had to be Simon Lambert and Sons, on South Main St. The home of course of YellowBelly Beers, we just had to pay here a visit.  Upon landing we spotted young Danny, he of The Bottle Podcast Fame, and we immediately ordered a drink. I didn’t know they did food too, but that was a welcome surprise. I opted for the Citra Pale Ale, which I can only say was brilliant. Everything you’d expect from citra, and given the pedigree of this brewery’s pale ale, I wasn’t disappointed. Janice had the excellently named, if a little bit of a tongue twister, Jack Bauer’s Power Shower Sour. The guys here are getting a name for ace sours, and this was no disappointment.

For food, I’d a Toasted Special and Chips, and Janice had what was a delish Seafood Chowder. The food was reasonably priced, as was the beer. Extra marks for the fact a half pint, costs exactly half of a full pint measure. Infact they also had their own infused spirits which look really tempting.

The fact the beers are made on sight, the Pale, Lager, and Sour, means they are all mega fresh, and rotate often. There is Guinness & Carlsberg for those who want that kinda thing, but there is plenty of choice from Irish and International Craft Breweries. They also have a Cask Engine, which they tap up every Thursday, and once the cask is gone, it’s gone.


Later on that evening after we had a lovely meal in Mi Street Food we decided to hit up The Sky & The Ground which is just a little further down the Street than Simon Lamberts.

We’d met Enya from here earlier to record the podcast, and I really liked the look of the place, it had totally transformed when we went in and there were some lads playing traditional Irish music with a rapt audience. The skill of the young lad playing the flute was something that had to be witnessed.

Similar enough they have a good range of craft on draught, plus plenty of the other stuff to keep everyone happy. I noted however though they had a really impressive spirit selection. Lots of interesting whiskeys and gins to try.

Upstairs they have a bottle bar that is only open at weekends, but over all I was very impressed with this bar too.

So if you’re in Wexford, and looking for good food, good drink, and good craic, you’ll be hard pressed to find anywhere better in my humble opinion.

BarSnob – The Swagman, Sligo

BarSnob – The Swagman, Sligo

Recently I had the pleasure of being up in Sligo to help The White Hag celebrate their second birthday.

The after party was to be held in The Swagman in Sligo town. This was an opportunity for me to visit a bar that’s been on the radar for a long time.

A pint of Púca my good man!

There is literally something for everyone, something I like to see in a bar. People who’s taste is still aligned to the industrial monoliths are looked after, those with a hankering for great beer, have ample choice, both on draught and bottle etc to keep them interested.

The pub was very busy on account of it being Saturday evening, but there were no undue delays in getting served. There is a large beer garden that could easily host long sessions during our brief summer.


My favourite beer of the evening was The Pale Ale by Yellowbelly which was served on Cask. I’m pretty sure that was an old Tetley’s handpump. Either way it was delicious.

Served in a proper dimple pint tankard

The guys also serve food, which sadly I didn’t get to try. On our next visit we will make sure to get there for some soakage.

A bar like this is in my opinion has to be viewed as a template for what to do with pubs in large regional towns, where maybe the market couldn’t sustain say a Craft Only bar. Serving food, having regular entertainment, and a great team working behind the bar are key requirements to having a successful bar. No doubt Dale and the team will continue to be a beacon in the North West for those who love great Irish, and international craft beer.

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