A new café with a cause, and the end of a beloved childhood destination.
We have an equal amount of Dublin openers and closures this week, with the arrival of a new café, a new bar, and the whisperings of a new taco spots, and the closing down of a tapas bar, a beloved aquarium, and the temporary shutting down of one of Dublin's most visited breweries.
Hard Ground Café
We're no stranger to a new café opening in Dublin - these days we're blessed with speciality flatties and accompanying morning buns on every corner, providing ample opportunity to support small, independent businesses instead of bigger chains.
But the city's latest opener is one with a difference - Hard Ground Café is working to disrupt the cycle of homelessness, by providing work and training for people who are homeless and feeding profits right back into a great charity.
An initiative of Mendicity, the oldest working charity in Dublin, Hard Ground serves up coffee carefully roasted by JJ Darboven at the extremely reasonable price of €2.75 - with all proceeds going towards the charity's healthcare, food, advocacy and shelter services.
Casa Del Toro
Casa Del Toro in Drumcondra have taken to social media to announce that they have closed with immediate effect.
The tapas bar suddenly closed on Sunday October 29th, much to the dismay of locals and their loyal customers. In their social media update, they thanked everyone for their unwavering support over the years, as well as all the fond memories they have cultivated in that time.
Guinness Open Gate Brewery
If you were planning on a trip to the Guinness Open Gate Brewery this side of Christmas, you will need to rethink as it has officially closed for the remainder of 2023.
The brewery took to Instagram to share the news with their followers, saying that due to some "exciting renovations" they would be closed until 2024, assuring that this was not goodbye, but simply a see you later.
Bray Sea Life Aquarium
It's the end of an era. If you've ever walked the Bray seafront, which many of us frequent particularly in the warmer months, you will be familiar with the Sea Life Aquarium. Many of us will have spent rainy afternoons inside, the aquarium synonymous with our childhoods, which is why we're gutted to hear that it will be closing soon.
While there is currently no exact date for the closure, we do know it will happen before the end of 2023, which gives you just two months to pay one last visit.
MASA 2.0 is on the way it seems, according to an announcement on their socials.
While we have no further information on when exactly the new restaurant is opening, or where, if it's anything like the OG location, there's going to be one more Dublin restaurant with queues spilling onto the street in anticipation.
Pen & Player
If you've been looking for a new cocktail bar to check out in the Dublin landscape, look no further, as new spot to Harcourt Street Pen & Player is just the place.
This new space is the exact kind of spot you'd hope to find for a tipple on a rainy evening, which is lucky given the near-continuous rainfall we have been experiencing as of late. The setting is warm, made up of plush furniture and bright colours, accented by art-deco style gold hardware.
Header images via Instagram / Pen and Player & / Casa Del Toro