Wherever you travel in the world, you will find a traditional Irish Pub. In New York alone there are more than 2,000 Irish pubs where the famous brands of Irish whiskey and Guinness can be found. Irish immigrants who fled to America in the late 1840s during the potato famine soon established several traditional Irish pubs to help them feel more at home in a strange country. The Irish have kept this tradition going, not only in New York, but all over the world, with Irish food, draft beers, loads of whiskey, Irish music, and raucous, riotous crowds, whether celebrating St. Patrick’s Day or, not. With such an astounding number of Irish pubs to sift through it may help to start with a couple of popular suggestions.
1. McSorley’s Old Ale House was established in 1854 as advertised on its distinctive façade – and to be sure it seems nothing much has changed since then, except for a fresh mound of accumulated memorabilia throughout the years, and the admittance of women. The décor sports yellowed newspaper clippings and historical photos, and even a bust of the late President Kennedy. The floors, deep in sawdust, are regularly crossed by a cat or two, and a chandelier from the Tammy Hall era, draped with fresh chicken-wishbones, hangs from the ceiling. The bartenders are still Irish and gruff mannered, capable of hoisting massive barrels of Guinness on their shoulders to replenish to fast-flowing beer taps The house brew is sold at $5 for two pints, and on weekends a loud crowd of office workers, college kids, and foreign tourists come along to drink to the Irish and sing raucous Irish songs accompanied by the fiddle and the flute.
2. Molly’s Pub and Shebeen is claimed to be the most authentic Irish pub in New York by most people. The bar dates back to the 1800s although the current establishment was built in the early 90s. In the ship’s cabin-like Tudor style interior traditional Shepherd’s Pie and well-drawn Guinness is served, drawing a mix of regulars and tourists.
Once you have to whet your appetite on the above two pubs, you can go on to explore and find lots more where these came from.
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