Sin é (pronounced 'Shin aye') is right next door to a large funeral parlour. At first I thought the big black hearse had arrived to collect a dead body from the pub!!!
Everyone - the taxi driver, the guide books, my landlady - says how nice Sin é is and how it is the only true pub in Cork. I expected it to be packed full on a Friday night but no, it was only pleasantly full. It is quite small inside, wrapped around the central bar. Loads of stuff stuck on the walls and ceiling - newspapers, pictures, postcards, fairy lights etc etc.
And a group of a dozen or so musicians jamming in the back room.
I sat at the bar with my pint of Murphy's and was delighted to be invited into a conversation with a country lad from Kerry. Until it became clear he had an unhealthy obsession with the subject of penises!!! I politely made my excuses and moved away to watch the band. Phew, these country types, I guess they don't get out often!!!
Dress Code Casual
Widely considered to be the most authentic pub in Cork, this place is surely worth a visit for a pint or two. The pub opened in 1889 and received a name which could be translated as „That's it“ - a pun, as their neighbours are a funeral home. Before the pub, there was a barbershop in this place and its barbershop heritage can still be seen, especially in the first floor. Only drawback is that the place is not really big, but attracts many locals and tourists alike. Food is not served, only bar snacks such as crisps are available.
Comedy and live music can be found here frequently, other than that, there's footie and horse reaces running on the TV screens. The audience is a fine crowd with all age groups and classes present, just united by the desire to have a good time. I would even go as far as to say: If you are in Cork and have the chance to visit only one pub: Choose this!
Sin É is one of the six or seven Cork Heritage Pubs, an association of Cork pubs interested in preserving local pub culture. The guys at SinÉ are pretty much aware of their special status and advertise themselves as the "only real pub in Cork - the rest are only bars!"