During the almost-decade I have been in Bangkok, Thailand I have eaten at The Dubliner, an Irish pub on Sukhumvit, several times. Every time, I have wanted to enjoy the food and the drink but, unfortunately, I didn’t. It’s a pity as the pub has a cozy, fun atmosphere, is in a good location and the staff is lovely. I just wish the food (and the price of it) could catch up.
Location of The Dubliner – Just down the street from Emporium mall, The Dubliner is easy to get to. Take the sky train (BTS) to Phrom Phong station, go down onto Sukhumvit Road and, with the Emporium mall on your left walk towards Royal Benjasiri Park. Just passed the park, on the left, you’ll see a typical-looking Irish pub all decked out in Irish green. That’s The Dubliner.
Atmosphere at The Dubliner – If you just look at atmosphere, The Dubliner is up there with the best of them. From the minute you walk in the door, you feel at home. The decor is full of dark wood, Irish street signs and posters and Irish musicians like U2, The Corrs and Van Morrison playing in the background. The staff is welcoming, the air conditioning is pumping and, if you didn’t look out of the window, you might feel you were in Ireland at an authentic Irish pub.
The Dubliner has three floors, the main downstairs floor crammed with tables and a bar seating area, the second floor has a Mezzanine area that seats more than 70 people and still has great views of the big screen TV for all the sporting events, and the pool table area on the third floor. Perfect for all tastes, including the kids.
Food and Drink at The Dubliner – Unfortunately, this is where The Dubliner fails. They do have a large menu with many of the old Irish and British favorites like fish and chips, fish pie with cheese mashed potatoes,
beef and Guinness pie, sausages with bubble and squeak, and crispy chicken and chips but, the taste you’d expect just isn’t there and the prices are ridiculous.
With an average entree around 430 baht ($14.50) that’s more than three times what you would pay for a similar meal at many other Bangkok restaurants and double the average Thai daily salary. For that much money, I’d expect a superb meal. Instead, what I got was uncooked battered fish, cold french fries and a beer that needed extra ice added as it just wasn’t cold enough.
In case you think this is an isolated case, be clear, I ate at The Dubliner six times over a three month period. The last few times, I didn’t want to eat there but friends insisted.
On only one occasion was the food decent, and that was when I finally gave up on the Irish/British food and ordered an Indian curry. What The Dubliner does have going for it is the portions are large but, as I wasn’t enjoying the food, that was the last of my concerns.
As far as drink goes, I’ve had Guinness there a couple of times and, like all Guinness outside of Ireland, it doesn’t travel particularly well. However, it was drinkable and slightly better tasting than the couple of beers on tap I also tried.
Christmas Dinner at The Dubliner – The worst food experience I had at The Dubliner though was Christmas dinner a couple of years ago. Sure, the portions were enormous and it all looked wonderful. But…..the potatoes were undercooked, the turkey dry, the Christmas pudding like a lead weight and with the wrong sauce, and the mince pies couldn’t have been harder if they were hockey pucks.
The party I was with played “Pass the mince pie” to see if we could get anyone to eat them, but no one would.
Again, a lovely atmosphere, fun Christmas music and a great place to enjoy a typical Irish or British holiday. Unfortunately, the food didn’t quite cut it.
For me, I have finally given up eating at The Dubliner as I am tired of the disappointment at the food and the high prices. Especially when I can walk just a few blocks down the street and eat at The Londoner, where the British pub food is incredible and the prices cheaper, there doesn’t seem much point keep struggling with The Dubliner.
It is a pity as the atmosphere is wonderful, but I don’t just go for atmosphere as I really do love my food.