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Good Friday BYOB event axed by Dublin restaurant over legal fears

Pitt Bros BBQ’s provocative window display has gone viral internationally.

Source: Facebook

A DUBLIN RESTAURANT that had planned a Good Friday bring-your-own-alcohol event has cancelled it over fears of a legal penalty.

Pitt Bros BBQ on South Great Georges Street announced the BYOB policy on Facebook earlier this week – along with a provocative window display, above.

However, yesterday the page posted an update saying they had been forced to change their plans:

Manager Brendan O'Mahony told DailyEdge.ie that Pitt Bros axed the BYOB plan after receiving advice from the Licensed Vintners Association - the organisation representing licensed premises in Dublin - about potential legal repercussions. He said:

Their interpretation of the alcohol consumption law means you can't sell it in a licensed premises, but you also can't consume it in a licensed premises. So we didn't want to take the risk of being shut down or something.

O'Mahony said the restaurant were "disappointed" by the outcome.

We are disappointed. We're open, we're a barbecue place. Beer goes great with barbecue. It would be nice if we could sell alcohol. But we understand it's in law.

Meanwhile, the photo of Pitt Bros' tongue-in-cheek 'Braise The Lord' window display has gone viral after being posted online. A reproduction on image sharing site Imgur has now been viewed more than 270,000 times.

Pitt Bros has had bookings from as far away as the US after people there saw the image, O'Mahony said.

We've had some negative reactions but the majority have been quite good. We've had emails from people in the States asking where exactly we are, because they're visiting Ireland in the summer and like the concept.

The restaurant hopes the law will change in future. "We're opening at midday today," O'Mahony said. "We don't know if we're going to have people in. But it's a case of giving people the option. If we can at some point change the laws that would be great."

The Restaurants Association of Ireland has condemned the law, branding it "outdated". Chief executive Adrian Cummins said: "This law affects more than just the diners who want a drink, it affects thousands of restaurant employees on a busy weekend when restaurants simply won’t open."

A spokesperson from the Licensed Vintners Association was unavailable for comment.

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Michael Freeman

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