You can really turn any space into anything these days - Allta's art gallery/cocktail bar Glovebox is located in the Trinity Street carpark, turning an otherwise empty space into a magnificent centre for drinks and culture.
There's no telling how long Glovebox plans to stay where it is, therefore it was integral to get a booking while we could. A friend who's emigrating decided it was a must-visit spot before she makes her one-way trip across the pond, and I can honestly say the space did not disappoint.
Why you should go?
If you're sick of going to the same kinds of bars and restaurants, Glovebox is fantastic for somewhere a bit different. You feel like you're experiencing something as you search for the entrance, and that you're extra special for having secured a booking. If you've got an occasion to celebrate, a birthday, an anniversary, or a going away drinks like I did, it's an ideal spot as it feels like you've made more effort just for having chosen such a unique location.
Set the scene
It is literally a carpark; there are no cars on Level 5, but there are the outlines of spaces. The other car park levels are in fact for parking; our designated driver parked on Level 3, which was handy. From there we walked up to Level 5, where we fumbled around a little trying to find the entrance to Glovebox (it is not sign-posted at all) until finally a friend who had arrived already took pity on us and sent us pictures of the series of doors she went through to get to our destination. It almost has that speakeasy sort of vibe.
The Glovebox website describes the experience as: "a new playful and fun home for contemporary culture in Dublin" and I can definitely agree with this. It acts as an accompanying cocktail and snack bar for Allta Winterhouse.
Inside acts as an art gallery/cocktail bar, with long wooden seats and benches with fluffy rugs thrown over them. The toilets have a sort of open plan feel to them (don't worry, you will actually pee in a cubicle) and no mirrors, although a friend did manage to expertly touch up her makeup in the frosted glass.
The art was well spaced out and each piece was given its own moment. There was artwork by the likes of Alfie Kungu, Ronan Dillon, Sarah O'Brien, and many more.
My only complaint would be that the music was very loud, making every conversation a bit of a shouting match (luckily anyone who knows me will tell you I have a gift for being loud).
If you're into cocktails, they take these seriously. I went for the Apple Mule with vodka (also comes as a virgin cocktail, which our designated driver opted for and loved) and it was delicious. The care into making these cocktails was intense, and could be viewed from our table. The presentation was simple, with a solid cuboid of ice in the centre (which was cool (literally) but made it somewhat difficult to drink). I liked it so much that I ordered a second.
We recommend ordering
The cherry sour was also delicious, coming in martini style glasses. As someone who's not a big gin drinker (I normally despise the stuff) I can honestly say it wasn't overpowering in taste, and the bitter-sweetness of the cherry easily masked it.
What we also wanted to order
If I'd had time for a third drink I would've gone for the raspberry spritz. We had food booked at another venue, but next time I would want to try the snacks, particularly the shitake miso butter sourdough.
The location is stunning - even moreso than the drinks it's just mesmerising the whole time you're there. The art was quirky and thought-provoking, and added a nice juxtaposition to the carpark setting.
The service was very efficient and timely - it wasn't overly friendly but equally wasn't unfriendly. Our last round of drinks arrived quite late as the venue got busier, but nothing too crazy - we were heading onto another venue so that was the only reason this was a slight issue. Overall we were attended to consistently for the two hours we stayed, and never had to flag someone down to get another drink or the bill. Which came in this lovely little jacket.
There is a lift up to Level 5, and plenty of space between tables and around the gallery.
And the question on everyone's lips - is it freezing?
I'm not going to lie, walking up towards Glovebox in a light shacket and scarf, I was initially concerned that I had not worn appropriate clothing. However there are heaters on Level 5 so no, it's not freezing. However, I wouldn't say it's roasting either - at one point I did put my shacket back on as I was a little chilly (although bear in mind, Storm Eunice had just passed, and there had been literal snow on the drive over as well). If Glovebox sticks around into the warmer months, I think you'd be perfectly comfortable temperature wise.
Where is it again?
Glovebox is located on Level 5 of the Trinity Street carpark.
How to keep up with them?
You can follow their socials HERE.
The drinks ranged from €7 to €13, which is not too bad when it comes to drinks out in Dublin. Considering the effort that went into the cocktails, I was surprised by their €12-13 price point. However, the wine was a little pricier than most spots, starting at €9 per glass, and costing as much as €13.50.
Would I recommend it?
Overall yes, I would recommend a visit to Glovebox. Mother's Day is coming up next month; if your mother is one who loves a cocktail, or a fancy setting, then Glovebox will win you significant points for effort. I'd love to see more spots like this in Dublin, and will absolutely be back to Glovebox.
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