Not a supergroup like the traveling Wilburys, or whatever you whippersnappers are listening to these days, but rather one of the largest pub and bar groups of its kind in the country. This isn’t the type of article we would usually write on Publin, but I feel it’s an interesting topic to cover when we’re discussing the absence of ‘chains’ in Ireland.
A lot was made of Wetherspoons entry into Ireland and the homogeneity of their products and look across their bars. They have mixed up the look of their bars a bit, but there’s definitely still a feeling of sameness across them all. Contrast that with an Irish pub group, such as this new formation. They have 12 venues and none of them could really be said to share similarities in terms of look or substance. There’s a diversity in a group like this that you don’t get in other countries when the same people own multiple venues.
The 12 venues controlled by the new group are The Mercantile, Whelans, East Side tavern, Marcels, Opium, Pichet, The Green Hen, Howl at The Moon, Soder + Ko, and a new venue on South William street that was Lost Society.
It’s safe to say that British chains wouldn’t be capable of providing live music entertainment like Whelans, or exceptional food like Soder + Ko. Irish groups or ‘chains’ just seem to do it better and respect the diversity of choice that the public has grown to demand.