Are these Ireland’s cheapest pints? Guinness, Heineken and Carlsberg for €3.30 and Beamish for €2.90


A Kerry pub recently thought to be selling Ireland’s cheapest pint of Guinness has been forced to surrender its crown to the armed forces.

elen’s bar in Kilmackillogue caused a stir on social media earlier this summer when it was revealed that a pint of plain was only €3.90 in the pub – and believed to be the cheapest pint in the country.

However, records released under freedom of information laws have revealed that military personnel and their guests can buy pints of Guinness for as little as €3.30 at 45 bars in Defense Forces barracks across the country.

A gin and tonic costs only 3.10 euros in the Kasernenstube, Heineken and Budweiser bottles cost 2.40 euros. Half a liter of lager is only €3.10, and Jägermeister shots are only €1.90.

Unfortunately, the military pubs are not open to the general public, but civilians can attend at the invitation of Defense Forces personnel. In 2019, before the Covid 19 pandemic, the bars achieved sales of almost 1.5 million euros.

A gin and tonic costs only 3.10 euros in the barracks bars, bottles of Heineken and Budweiser cost 2.40 euros

The pubs were previously subsidized by the taxpayer, receiving nearly €1 million from the Treasury between 2012 and 2015. However, this practice has been discontinued and the bars are now funded from their own profits.

An official price list shows that the bars sell Beamish for just €2.90, while Budweiser, Heineken or Carlsberg cost €3.30. Carling and Fosters are even cheaper at €3.10.

Gin and vodka retail at €2, but whiskey and brandy are slightly more expensive at €2.20 and €2.40 respectively. Premium gins like Bombay Sapphire cost €2.30.

The drink prices are correct from June.

Alcohol-free products are also very cheap in the Army Bars. A cup of coffee costs just 70 cents, tea is sold for 50 cents and guests can enjoy a bowl of soup for just 60 cents.

The outlets also sell a range of cigars and other tobacco products, as well as snacks, confectionery and a selection of military medal ribbons and holders.

In 2019, the military pub network made a profit of €439,607 on sales of €1,480,592, representing a gross margin of 29.7 percent. Sales fell to €375,918 in 2020 and €277,384 last year due to the impact of the pandemic.

A Defense Forces spokesman said retail prices for all alcoholic and non-alcoholic items have been adjusted in response to price increases communicated by suppliers and after reviews by the Canteen Committee. Are these Ireland’s cheapest pints? Guinness, Heineken and Carlsberg for €3.30 and Beamish for €2.90

Fry Electronics Team

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