Best International Bar Nomination: VCC

t is that time of year when Tales of the Cocktail requests nominations for the best bars and bartenders from around the world. This year I will enthusiastically tip my hat to the Vintage Cocktail Club in Dublin Ireland. So why I am so enthusiastic about VCC? Well, read on and find out.

In February 2015, my girlfriend and I decided that a trip to Ireland would be a fun way to escape the brutal cold of a Canadian winter. Sure, Ireland is not quite tropical, but it is a green island that was about 25 degrees warmer than Canada at the time, close enough. One of the non-climate related perks was Dublin’s fast developing cocktail scene.

As per modern standards, I posted said trip to Facebook requesting sites and destinations to visit, at which point Pat Thomas, VCC’s bar manager, asked if I could stop by VCC and do a little talk to the staff. Since part of my plan involved taking my girlfriend, Anna, to VCC on her birthday to experience excellent cocktails (she’s new to the modern cocktail scene), I saw an opportunity to make her birthday a little more memorable.

I won’t go into extensive birthday planning details, but part of the plan was to just do an omakase style cocktail night where everything was taken care of by Pat to create a memorable experience. Mission accomplished. Pat and staff did an excellent job making some fantastic cocktails, some from the very thorough VCC menu and some experimental “on the fly” cocktails.

Why does VCC deserve to be the best bar in the world? Because when you put your trust in a bar to impress a girl, on her birthday, from 5000km away, and that bar executes it beyond your expectations and said girl post to Facebook “best birthday ever”, that simply requires acknowledgement.

The staff at VCC are friendly, they execute their drinks really well, the space is cool and there isn’t any pretentiousness though I’m sure they will accommodate if you request it. That’s everything I personally like in a cocktail bar.

And of course Pat gets bonus points for naming one of the experimental cocktails the “mAnnahattan”.

The mAnnahattan

6-7 dash Acid Phosphate
Pinch sea salt
20ml Pedro Ximenez Sherry
1 barspoon La Fee Absinthe
60ml Connemara Irish Whiskey
4 dash Fee Brothers Walnut Bitters

Combine ingredients with ice and stir. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe.

As for Best American Bar, I will suggest and vote for The Last Word in Livermore, CA. Why? Because it’s a proper cocktail bar that eschews pretentiousness for fun. An evening out should be fun.

Anyone can vote, so just head over to the Tales of the Cocktail nomination site and fill in the form, for the people and places you think deserve to win. The deadline for submissions in April 30th, so get on it.

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