By Felicity Clarke, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO – There’s good news for those who find thimbles full of weak lager an unfulfilling way to drink beer. A new pump of hair-on-your-chest Guinness is arriving in town at the latest Ipanema addition, Waxy’s Irish bar.
Across the road from last week’s featured opening, the Mexican bar restaurant Blue Agave on Rua Vinicius de Moraes, Waxy’s is an altogether different offering. The newly finished refurbishment brings a classic friendly Irish pub feel with late bar sensibilities to Ipanema’s lively night scene.
The man behind the project is Dan Yantin, a Londoner with a vision to introduce his Waxy’s concept to Rio following the established success of the original Waxy’s in Dubai. Launched six and half years ago, the original Waxy’s is a popular nightspot on the Dubai nightlife circuit with it’s lively party atmosphere and nightly entertainment. It’s a tight formula Dan is applying with cast-iron commitment, “It’s true that many people open bars as a dream and hope it will work, but I’m one of those people that if I do something, I have to do it right.”
This is evident in the standards and thinking displayed from the very first impressions at Waxy’s. The décor is a sleek modern take on the classic pub with bottle green walls, dark wood furniture, cozy dimmed lighting, and characterful pub accents such as stained glass light fittings and a bare slab-brick wall.
Another area where care is literally shown is service, something that has a tendency to be overlooked in Rio establishments. As Yantin explains “We’re creating a friendly bar and bringing it up a level with the standard of service and the selection of food and drinks.”
For the British and Irish patrons, Waxy’s will provide the comforting tastes of home with a pub menu of favorites like fish-and-chips, giant Yorkshire pudding filled with a classic beef stew and spicy curry. There’s also a bar snack menu and sophisticated mains with prices ranging from R$15 to R$50. With the award-winning chef who scooped Time Out’s Best Bar Food in Dubai for Waxy’s Dubai in the kitchen, the bar should become a culinary attraction as well as a party hot spot.
With entertainment every night of the week there is little doubt bit Waxy’s will become a good time party venue. Weekly highlights include a Wednesday cocktail night, 80s night on Friday and an early open jam session on Sunday evenings.
But what about the drink? Aside from the meal-in-a-glass black stuff (Guinness), Waxy’s has an extensive drinks menu, with a particular cocktail focus. Alongside the Rio caipirinha staple and others is the Waxy’s signature Bullfrog cocktail, a pint glass of luminescent blue rocket fuel with all kinds of alcoholic flavors blended with Red Bull to create a drink of wickedly drinkable potency.
With sport showing, the nightly entertainment, food, drink and attention to atmosphere, Yantin and his team are looking to establish Waxy’s as the go-to bar of choice for those seeking a lively night out. “We want people to know that there’s always something happening, and it’s the kind of place where anything could happen” says Yantin who has plans to expand with outposts in Leblon and Barra too.
So whether it’s a comfort pub meal, a hearty pint of Guinness, or a raucous fun night out, Waxy’s is the newest Irish-flavored option to hit Rio.