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CMcEntees is situated in the heart of the historic town of Kells in Co.Meath. We are a family run business and have been serving the local community since 1899. CMcEntees opened its doors firstly as a pub and in later years changed to a shop selling grocery and off sales. We now predominantly sell alcohol and have earned a name for supplying a large variety of fine wines, top shelf whiskies, foreign and local craft beers and quality liqueurs. We also pride ourselves in finding quality local produce for you to enjoy.

We are now expanding our business to online sales and hope to expand our range and ideas to suit what you our valued customers are looking for. We look forward to helping you find that something special for your cocktail evening, party, gift, Christmas Dinner or simply to relax in front of the tv after a long week at work.

Back in the Day

Growing up in McEntee’s, the production of our own bottled Guinness was among Cathal and Rory’s tasks. This involved the weekly washing of bottles with the dirty ones being soaked in very hot water and then individually washed with a brush, like a baby bottle brush, powered by a motor (they were very modern for their time). The washed bottles were then soaked in cold water. The constant immersion of hands in hot water and then into cold water led to the inevitable chilblains. The clean bottles were then stacked and stored overnight to dry but before being used had to be checked for the occasional intruder in the form of a snail resulting in some having to be rewashed.
The Guinness came from St. James’s Gate, Dublin in large wooden barrels (and in later years metal ones) which were placed on a stand with the front of the barrell facing outwards. To extract the liquid, a circular wooden knob on the top of the barrel was pushed inwards to allow air in and another knob to the front of the barrell pushed in to make an opening for a tap. If this process was not done exactly right you were likely to get a spray of stout all over your face and clothes. Speed was essential to ensure that each bottle was removed when full as otherwise the liquid would spill over.
The bottled Guinness was stored flat on wooden slats which had the date of bottling marked in chalk on the side. It was then left to mature for a number of weeks. When ready, McEntee’s own label was pasted on to each bottle.
In addition to the normal size bottles of Guinness some half size bottles which were referred to as “Baby Bottles” were produced specially for the ladies who just wanted a small glass of Guinness. These were also used occasionally for young children to build up iron in their bodies.
The “take a way” culture was operational even then, with people bringing their supply of Guinness home. To meet this demand bottles were prepacked in shoeboxes and tied with twine. The boxes would have come from Kiernan’s and Gavigan’s, the local shoe shops. Bottling Guinness was hard work so needless to say it was a long time before the lads enjoyed Guinness again.

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