Day 3 was pretty chill. This is the day that we left good ‘ole Dublin for greener pastures. We had our bags packed and were ready to board our bus at 8am. That’s where Barry (the bus driver) entered our lives and he’ll be a better man for it, I’m sure.
This bus is the coolest place you’ll ever experience for several reasons:
1) It is not uncommon to start popping bottles of delicious beer by 8:15 am
2) There is no class system on the bus. Unlike high school, everyone is cool
3) We’re got some pretty funny people so the laughter is boisterous and often.
Our first stop was Carlow Brewing Company, better known as O’Hara’s. This is a family owned brewery that opened in 1996 with the vision of brewing traditional Irish styles with quality ingredients. This isn’t a hard task as the brewery is located in the heart of Ireland’s malt and hop-growing “Barrow Valley” region.
The O’Hara’s team was extremely welcoming with a table of food and beer flowing freely from the taps. My favorite style was the Irish Red. The sweet caramel notes balanced nicely with the maltiness. At 4.3% ABV it’s an easy drinking beer with lots of flavor. A perfect combination! You can check out the complete O’Hara’s line-up here.
After about an hour of riding, we arrived in Wexford, Ireland. This small town is located in southeast Ireland, at the mouth of the River Slaney. We didn’t have much time to explore before dinner but I fell in love with its windy, cobblestone streets and vow to return one day.
Dinner was at Simon Lamert & Sons Pub and Brewery. This pub features its own beers, which are brewed on site. The brewery is called Yellowbelly and produces award-winning brews that can be found all over Ireland.
I had already tried several Yellowbelly beers at bars across Dublin and was an instant fan. I honestly had not had one beer of theirs that I didn’t like. My favorite was a Berliner Weisse called “Jack Bauer’s Power Shower” – aside from the awesome name this was a very mild, approachable sour with hints of orange peel. You can check out Yellowbelly’s full list of beers here.
After a delicious dinner and many beers, we took the bus to check out Yellowbelly’s brand spankin’ new brewery. Just a few minutes drive from the restaurant, the new digs were coming together nicely. They had yet to begin brewing so that “new brewery smell” was ever present with squeaky-clean fermenters and a canning line ready to be fired up.
They were scheduled to begin production shortly after our visit and I think I can speak for the entire group in saying that we wish them the best and hope everything is running smoothly.
Fun Fact: This month, Simon Lamber & Sons Brewpub was named “Pub of the Year 2017” for Co. Wexford at the Irish Restaurant Awards. Congrats!
With a full belly and heavy eyes, we headed to our hotel. The next day we were headed to Galway to see old friends and make new one’s. Stay tuned!
If you’d like to go on a super cool beer adventure led by the one and only Owen Ogletree then find out how here.