New Yorkers love a good excuse to dress up and day-drink before noon. We’ve got Halloween, SantaCon and, the patron saint of drinking holidays, St. Patrick’s Day!
On March 17th, The Big Apple turns into a Shamrock-themed sea of Kelly green, and everyone gets to be Irish for the day. The St. Patrick’s Day parade has been a New York tradition since 1762 – but this is thirsty, so our tradition is drinking! Whether you fancy a proper pint of Guinness or a bit of the ole Jameson, Powers, Redbreast, Tullamore Dew, Connemara, etc., or all of the above to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at the Top 5 Irish Bars in NYC.
Bring your best green gear game and start with an Irish Coffee, but remember to pace yourself so you can last late enough to use the obligatory pick-up line, “Kiss Me I’m Irish.”
Top 5 Irish Bars to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day
McSorley’s Old Ale House
15 East 7th Street
Established in 1854, McSorley’s can boast that it is NYC’s oldest bar. Everyone from Abe Lincoln to John Lennon has enjoyed pints at this sawdust-floored watering hole. Not much has changed at McSorley’s over the years except that women were finally allowed entrance in the 1970s.
287 Third Avenue
This cozy pub is about as authentic to Ireland as you can get in NYC. Éire-inspired cottage exterior, sawdust on the floors, Irish tunes blasting and the scent of Shepard’s pie fills the air. The Irish comfort food is delicious but make sure to look out for the owner, Peter O’Connell, and toast a Guinness – or five – with him by the wood burning fireplace and feel yourself transport (mentally, at least) to the Emerald Island.
The Late Late Bar & Spirit Grocer
159 E Houston Street
Named after “The Late Late Show,” the world’s longest running TV Show based in Ireland, The Late Late Bar is our newest pick for the best spot for Paddy’s. The Late Late is Irish-inspired but does not resemble the traditional stereotypical “Irish Pub” which commonly exists across the USA today. Instead, it feels like you walk into an Irish cousin’s house 1960’s. Head over to have a Guinness with a sprig of mint or one of their delicious all Guinness cocktail menu and get treated to awesome live music and truly genuine Irish hospitality.
The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog
30 Water Street
This award-winning bar describes itself as embodying “the conviviality of Old New York and the Irish-American tradition,” hailed as a must-visit notable media outlets. The downstairs Taproom has a well-curated beer and whiskey selection as well as killer punch, and upstairs you can find “72 historically-accurate cocktails dreamed up by the nineteenth century’s most celebrated bartenders.“ The Dead Rabbit took home the award for World’s Best New Cocktail Bar at Tales of the Cocktail 2013, and described as one of the “15 Bars You Must Visit Before You Die,” so cross it off the bucket list.
Wilfie & Nell West Village
228 West 4th Street
This West Village pub is a Thirsty favorite since it pairs our favorite classic Irish drinks with incredible grub that is all locally sourced from purveyors like Murray’s Cheese Shop, Blue Ribbon Bakery & Bob McClure pickles. But back to the drinks. Named after owner Mark Gibson’s Dubliner grandparents, Wilfie & Nell does them proud with a great beer selection at reasonable prices. This cozy, dark bar is reminiscent of an old ale house with a modern twist and good looking crowd. But get there early since Wilfie & Nell is known to get pretty packed.