Merry-makers throughout the land will flock to Killarney this weekend to celebrate the opening of Ollie Favier’s bar, The Shire. And who could blame them? Apparently it’s pure Mordor on a Saturday night.
Joking about being “vertically challenged”, opening a low-ceiling venue for Hobbits seemed the next logical step for Ollie, who also owns The Bailey in Cork City.
Tucked between its cosy archways, The Shire boasts an impressive range of beers, some named after Tolkien characters. Served in antiquated tankards worthy of any Hobbit-hole, if Gandalf’s Ale doesn’t wet your whistle, Bilbo’s Beer should do.
Ollie said the venture could be traced back to the release of the second and third Lord of the Rings movies when his group of friends became known locally as the Hobbits, even creating their own signature ‘Hobbit-juice’ cocktail. “It kind of just snowballed from there,” said Ollie.
“It’s fun and it’s quirky and it’s putting the fun back into drinking. I’ve always had an interest in the Lord of the Rings. It’s one of those things, like Star Wars, that will stand the test of time.”
The main bar will be the first thing you see when you come in and is, of course, called the Prancing Pony. Go round the bar and you come to Middle-Earth — the perfect place to have your 40th birthday party.
Ollie said the tourist trade will be a big one for The Shire but has also received a lot of interest from locals. He said patrons don’t need to have an interest in the Lord of the Rings to go to the bar. “Even if you’re not into the books or the movies you should still come down. It a nice cosy, comfy little bar and we’ll welcome everyone.” Maybe not Orcs though.
The Shire opens in Michael Collins Place, Killarney, at 3pm today.