Bartenders’ Favorite Irish Pubs for St. Patrick’s Day
The Wild Rover, Sydney
“The ideal Irish pub,” according to Tom Egerton, Bar Manager at Eau de Vie in Melbourne. “Eschewing the usual trappings of shamrocks, rubbish cèilidh bands and Guinness branding, the Wild Rover boasts reams of good Irish whiskey, the best stout on handpull you’ll find outside of St. James’ Gate, and friendly folk behind the stick. If you’re serious about heavy beer, light whiskey, and fine tunes, there’s no better.”
The Speakeasy, Taipei
“Nothing beats a late-night pint at Speakeasy” says Spencer Huang, Co-Founder and Head Bartender of Taipei’s R&D Craft Cocktail lab. “Great atmosphere with some awesome people—especially Helen, she’s a sweetheart...Highly recommended if you need a brew at 2 or 3 a.m.”
Murphy’s Bar & Grill, Honolulu
Dave Newman, Owner of Pint + Jigger in Honolulu, says “No other bar I have been to is as welcoming as Murphy’s. The staff takes hospitality to the next level.” This is the type of place where even newcomers are treated like regulars: “Everyone is treated the same whether you drink here three times a week or it’s your first visit. They pour a mean pint and remember the way you like your Manhattan, not to mention your name.”
Erin Rose, New Orleans
Beau Williams, Owner of Kansas City’s Julep, recommends this “no-frills Irish pub in the heart of the French Quarter.” Williams says it’s a favorite for its “outrageously awesome prices, killer po’ boys, and frozen Irish coffees (to-go if you desire). Not to mention the friendly, dressed-down staff that's no stranger to a stiff pour of whiskey.”
Finn McCool’s, New Orleans
“Top to bottom, the owners to the bartenders and their love of the neighborhood they chose to open their bar in,” according to Bartender Chris Hannah of French 75 Bar in New Orleans. “They even came back in force after it was flooded by Hurricane Katrina.”
“In a modern, ever-changing city, it’s a must-see,” says Jack McGarry, Managing Partner at NYC’s Dead Rabbit. “It’s proper old-school. Light and Dark ale, sawdust strewn floors, and ferocious staff—just as McSorley was himself. Dave Arnold, Owner of Booker and Dax in New York, agrees: “Make sure to order a cheese platter, which is still just some slices of cheddar, onions, and a stack of saltines. Remember they only serve beers in pairs, and there are only two valid orders: two dark or two light.”
Swift Hibernian Lounge, NYC
The book praises Swift’s “extensive beer selection, small plates, and a large space,” which make it “a good spot for groups at any time of the evening and especially for late-night as they are open til 4am.” Fans include Dushan Zaric, Co-Founder of Employees Only in New York and Partner in The 86 Co, and Dale DeGroff, veteran Rainbow Room bartender and Founding President of The Museum of the American Cocktail in New Orleans.
Dead Rabbit Grocery and Grog, NYC
Bartender James Kemp of The Finnieston in Glasgow says, “Dead Rabbit is simply the best experience I’ve ever had in any bar.” Citing the “brilliant” beer selection, “quiet Irish folk music,” and “cleverly composed cocktail book,” he says, “I’d happily hop on a plane from Glasgow just to go for a night.” Philip Duff, spirits consultant and Director of Education for Tales of the Cocktail, calls it “one of the best Irish bars anywhere.”
Boston Café, Lyon
Marc Bonneton, Owner of L’Antiquaire and RedWood in Lyon, says he and his staff love to have after-work drinks here. He says the shamrock-strewn, Southie-style pub is a must-visit for the “people you meet” and the convivial atmosphere.
Fiddler’s Green, Saint Petersburg
“This is the perfect bar to enjoy late at night,” according to Igor Zernev, Owner of Saint Petersburg’s El Copitas Bar. He claims that this pub captures “the dark and gloomy mood of sailors about to go on their last voyage. Fiddler’s Green is an ancient legendary place where all the sailors go after their death.” Spooky.