A DONEGAL pub has been helping keep spirits up during the recent lockdown by delivering freshly-poured pints of Guinness to customers.
Cavanaghs Bar – Shanty – has been offering a door-to-door service to customers around Greencastle since the coronavirus pandemic prompted the temporary closure of all pubs.
Since Easter Saturday, the popular Inishowen hostelry has been delivering pints of beer, wines, bottles and cans. They also stock cigarettes and other pub favourites, like Tayto Cheese and Onion crisps, for anyone looking to enjoy a drink in the comfort of their own living room.
The service, operated by publican Kevin Cavanagh, was created to help cater to those who have been loyal to his premises down through the years.
Customers simply call up the pub, place their orders between 4.30pm and 8.30pm each day and before too long a fresh pint of Guinness is on its way.
“The pub closed the Sunday before St Patrick’s Day – March 15 – and I started the home delivery service on Easter Saturday (April 11).
“I take the orders here at the bar. Some people come to the bar to collect their order or we can deliver. Initially, I was simply trying to use up all the stock I had but I had to go to Buncrana this week to get two more kegs of Guinness,” he said.
Cavanagh’s operate an off-licence and are providing a service to customers within a radius of a few mile of the pub.
“I’ll take the pint to them in a pint glass -not plastic – in a container that can hold six pints at a time. I cover the top of the pint in cling film and deliver straight to their door. I don’t go into anybody’s house. I stand outside and use a contactless card machine. There’s no cash involved,” he said.
Known as a good porter house, it’s not surprising that pints of Guinness are a particular favourite with customers.
“Requests tend to be for Guinness and a packet of Tayto Cheese and Onion crisps as they would normally have a packet with the pint at the bar. Bacon fries and peanuts are also popular,” he said.
While breweries indicated that they were willing to take back unused stock, Mr Cavanagh decided against letting the beer sit in a barrel.
“There’s a big demand for Guinness. Some people are very generous and drop back their empty glasses the following day. Ninety nine per cent of glasses have been returned so far.
“We’re simply trying to look after the locals who have been good to us throughout the year. It’s payback time. Also, many of our customers are glad to see me coming. They appreciate the call,” he said.
Not all deliveries are simply made up of a pint, bag of crisps and maybe a wee whiskey though.
“No. I delivered twenty pints of Guinness to a house not too far from here one night over the weekend. It was two runs of ten pints,” he said.
With the lockdown likely to continue for the next few weeks at least, Cavanagh’s is likely to remain very busy.