When I was researching “what to do in Caherdaniel?” while planning our Irish adventure every website I found stated a ‘must see and must visit’ point of interest is the Blind Piper pub, and the majority of people on Trip Advisor seemed to agree. Sure there were some bad reviews, but on the whole the Blind Piper pub got good write ups. The Blind Piper pub is even featured in our Lonely Planet Guide to Ireland, so it must be worth a visit right?
During a walk from Wavecrest campsite the Blind Piper pub was on the route, so it was the perfect opportunity to go and see if what I had read about the place was true. As we approached the Blind Piper pub the first thing I noticed on the side of the road in the gutter was a smashed Guinness glass. A few steps further down the street and resting on one of the window ledges of a nearby property was another Guinness glass full of a yellow liquid – which I was hoping was nothing but flat lager from the night before, although I couldn’t be too sure and there was no why I was going to investigate further.
One thing I will say about the Blind Piper pub is that it is an attractive and pretty pub that looks quite quirky. Despite the (what I consider) loud yellow color scheme it seems to fit in well with the local area. The hanging baskets and outside seating make it look very inviting. I would say that overall impressions were very good.
At this point on our walk the Blind Piper was closed (it was a Sunday morning) however it looked like a good lunch stop on the way back from our walk, so it was time to check out the menu. At first the prices looked pretty reasonable, and then I realized I was looking at the sides. A little further down the menu were the lunches, all of which seemed okay but the prices were a little on the high side. I appreciate Caherdaniel is a tourist trap but 12 Euro to 20 Euro for lunch is a little too rich for me in Ireland – there are loads of cheaper eateries that do exactly the same dishes. Out of interest I thought I’d have a look at the dinner menu and this too looked okay, but also damn expensive. The prices varied from 22 Euro – 30 Euro, and if I am going to pay this sort of money for one course I expect more than standard “pub grub”. Whilst I immediately ruled out the Blind Piper for lunch (call me tight if you want) we decided we would stop off for a drink.
By the time we reached the Blind Piper I was hot, sweaty and in desperate need of some refreshment – one day I’ll learn to take liquid with me when I go out walking. As we reached the Blind Piper a family was just leaving an outside table, and since all the others were taken the better half claimed the table and I went in to get some drinks.
Some may describe the inside of the Blind Piper pub as quaint, however I would describe it as dark, dank, seedy and dirty looking. At first I thought I just needed time for my eyes to adjust to coming inside from outside, but after standing at the bar waiting to be served for several minutes nothing changed. Yep, the inside of the Blind Piper was just as I first thought. I appreciate there are many people who like pubs like this, but they are not for me and sitting inside the Blind Piper pub would not be for me. Fortunately, we had a table outside but had we not or it was a wet day I would have walked straight in, and then immediately turned around and walked back out again – but I appreciate that’s just me.
Being non-drinkers (for a variety of reasons) I ordered a coke and a 7 Up, costing a total of 5 Euro. I was given 2 small glasses both full to the brim with ice together with a glass bottle of Coke and 7 Up. I have always struggled carrying drinks (I blame my small hands) and when presented with bottles and glasses try and the entire contents in the glass to reduce the amount I have to carry. Failing miserably I carried the glasses and bottles (with the tiniest bit left in them – which was most annoying) out to the table.
It wasn’t until I was outside that I realized just how expensive the drinks were. Each bottle held 200ml (i.e. not even two thirds of a can) and each bottle cost 2.5 Euro! I have to admit that whilst pouring the drinks at the bar I didn’t think about it, and the fact there was some of the contents left in each bottle after filling the glasses gave the illusion I was getting good value for money. The “games” pubs and bars play (i.e. provide super small glasses and fill them right up with ice) to trick the customer is very clever, a little sneaky but very wrong. It was then I realized it’s not only food that is overpriced at the Blind Piper pub, and the drinks are too. What really was the icing on the cake of our experience of the Blind Piper pub was the cleanliness of the glasses, which was in all honest disgusting. Neither my glass nor my wife’s glass was clean, but as I had already poured at the bar there was nothing I could do, other than not drink it of course.
There was a family on the table in front of us eating, and as I am nosy I was rubber necking over my wife’s shoulder to see what the food looked like. From what I saw it looked okay, but then it was standard ‘pub grub’ so this should be a given. From what I could see the portion sizes looked pretty stingy, judging by the tiny size of the bowl of chips on the side of the plate. As for the taste? That I can’t comment, and there is no way I would run over to the family and starting quizzing them about their lunch.
Our visit to the Blind Piper pub was quick (we spent a little over ten minutes there) and it is one that will never be repeated.
I have to say I am not impressed with the Blind Piper pub, I would never return to the Blind piper pub and I would never recommend the Blind Piper pub either. It is attractive, pretty and inviting on the outside, but inside it looks squalid. It is damn expensive (be prepared to spend a lot of money), it is not good value for money, the owner/bar staff do dirty tricks to make it look like you get more than you do and the cleanliness is questionable. I do have to question why the Blind Piper appears all over the place – am I missing something? Or maybe the other pub in Caherdaniel is really, really bad?
The "Rip off" drinks bought at the Blind Piper
The best part of the Blind Piper experience was the walk before, and after it. The Blind Piper pub is a pretty pub on the outside, and it is a particularly pretty area, as shown below
About the author
A total motor home newbie with a six year camping background in a folding camper. A keen blogger sharing my experience of researching, choosing, buying and owning a motor home. and every thing that goes with it.
The Motor home