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Dublin’s Berlin Bar faces licence challenge after controversial brunch event

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Berlin Bar in Dublin is facing a court challenge to the renewal of its licence after footage emerged last month that showed customers crowding around the bar as a man danced on it pouring drinks into their mouth.

The video was shared on social media of patrons in the popular venue on Dame Lane in Dublin city-centre.

A masked staff member danced on the bar as he poured shots into dancing customers’ mouths during the controversial bar brunch advertised as “A Very Boozy Baked Brunch With Your Buds”.

The bar’s manager, businessman Jay Bourke, described it as “20 seconds of madness” when he commented to the media and said it did not reflect what went on that day at the venue.

However, gardaí have formally objected to the bar retaining it’s licence in an application which came before Judge Michael Coghlan at the Dublin District Court on Thursday.

It has been brought by Garda Inspector John Finucane from Pearse Street station.

Barrister Dorothy Collins confirmed it related to the Berlin Bar, which is operated by her client Trillium Leisure Ltd.

A Garda sergeant told Judge Coghlan the objection was, “on the basis of non-compliance with Covid regulations”. Evidence has not yet been heard.

Judge Coghlan ordered that the hearing would take place on October 28th next.

Mr Bourke was not present for the proceedings.

Judge Coghlan also acceded to request from Ms Collins to direct disclosure of full statements in relation to the various alleged breaches of the regulations by her client.

At the outset of the busy licensing court list, Judge Coghlan reminded parties in the cases that these were “unprecedented times”.

Licences were granted to or renewed by pubs, bars, restaurants and cafés, with pre-conditions that strict compliance will be observed, he said.

If gardaí have found there were acts of misbehaviour, “it is not just an endorsement and a slap on the wrist, it is the loss of a licence,” he warned.

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