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best pub food in Ireland

Gastronomy 101: Where to Find the Best Pub Food in Ireland

For generations the pub has been a popular gathering place in Ireland. Rural communities relied on the pub as a place to connect with neighbors near and far and farmers and fisherman traditionally celebrated their good fortune or commiserated with friends during difficult times in the local pub. From catching up on local news, to talking politics, the local watering hole has a long and rich history in Ireland and the modern pub is firmly entrenched as a key component of Irish culture. While most people associate the Irish pub with hearty stouts, song and raucous laughter, today’s pubs have evolved to offer some of the most delicious food on the Emerald Isle – a fact which has inspired us to assemble a gastronomic tour of the best pub food in Ireland!

Simple Seafood at Cronin’s Pub

With an idyllic site on the waterfont in County Cork, Cronin’s Pub has been a mainstay for generations of sailors and fishermen. The village of Crosshaven has a storied history which dates back to 1892, and whether you’re an international yachting enthusiast in town for Cork Week, or you’re paying tribute to this seaside community with a visit to the local sailing club during Crosshaven’s summer regattas in the bay, a stop in Cronin’s Pub is sure to hit the spot. Owned and operated by Sean and Thecla Cronin for over 40 years, Cronin’s Pub offers food that is as delicious as it is simple. Thecla makes a batch of fresh seafood chowder each and every day and the kitchen integrates fresh, local produce in both warm and cold sandwiches which go great with a pint of local Stout.

best pub food in Ireland, seafood chowder, seafood stew

Stop into Cronin’s Pub in County Cork for a bowl of Thecla’s hearty seafood chowder, made fresh daily.

Home-Grown Meats at Ely Gastro Pub

If you’re looking for the perfect blend of old and new, make time to dine at Ely Gastro Pub in Dublin. Located at the recently refurbished Grand Canal Square complex, this pub is close to the theater – making it a great choice for a pre-show dinner or an after-show snack. While you may only associate Irish pubs with hearty brews, Ely Gastro Pub caters to wine drinkers as well and offers an impressive wine list, curated from some of the best small vineyards from around the globe. The meats served here are sourced from the owner’s local farms and chefs stay out of the way when preparing seafood – allowing the elegant flavors of freshly caught fish to speak for themselves. The servers here are knowledgeable and friendly and if you are indecisive we suggest that you ask your server for recommendations. Ely Gastro Pub offers some of the best pub food in Ireland!

best pub food in Ireland, lamb chops,

For a modern take on the traditional Irish pub try Ely Gastro Pub in Dublin – they raise all of their own meat!

A Bubbly Take on Tradition: Brown’s Champagne Lounge

Champagne may be the last thing on your mind when you think about an Irish pub, but we encourage you to let Brown’s Restaurant in Londonderry change your mind. Offering a fresh take on the traditional Irish gathering place, Brown’s Restaurant and Champagne Lounge offers guests an upscale “jazz club” feel. Whether you’re stopping here on your way to the theater or opt to dine here for their exceptional Sunday brunch, Brown’s offers some of the most creative and well-executed dishes in the region. Start your dinner with Brown’s home turf smoked beef, served with pine nut mayo and aged balsamic. For your entree, dive into their Monkfish saltimbocca with cepe risotto, onions and smoked bacon (all served in a delicious red wine sauce). Traditional Irish pub gastronomy meets high-end cuisine and service at Brown’s Restaurant – making it one place we think you shouldn’t miss.

best pub food in Ireland, champagne lounge

Champagne in an Irish pub? Think outside the box … Brown’s in Londonderry will make you a believer!

Think History at Larkin’s Pub and Restaurant

This waterfront pub is located in the Irish village of Garrykennedy on the banks of Lough Derg. Housed in a building which is over 300 years old, Larkin’s Pub invites visitors to duck beneath it’s thatched roof and enjoy traditional character and charm inside. If you have time to visit just one traditional pub during your trip to Ireland make it Larkin’s – an establishment which is lovingly owned and operated by Cormac and Maura Boyle. Auto Europe recommends that you stop by at lunch and embrace your Irish roots by ordering the house specialty: bacon and cabbage, served at the bar with a hearty pint.

best pub food in Ireland, Lough Derg pub

Historic Larkin’s Pub in Garrykennedy, Ireland is located on the peaceful green banks of Lough Derg.

Pour Your Own Pint in O’Neill’s Pub

Dublin is one of the best places to go on an eating adventure, and O’Neill’s pub, located close to Dublin’s famed Templebar, is an authentic and worthwhile stop. Licensed for over 300 years, when you step through the doors of O’Neill’s it’s easy to picture all of the people who have enjoyed a drink here during that time. Filled with nooks, crannies and snug corners to enjoy a drink and meal, we invite you to mingle with the regulars, pour your own pint and enjoy some of the highest quality trad music sessions you’ll find in Dublin. Even if you aren’t hungry you’ll want to eat at O’Neill’s, and we recommend one of their specialties: traditional Irish dishes like corned beef and cabbage, Irish Stew or Beef and Guinness Stew.

best pub food in Ireland, O'Neill's Pub, Dublin pub

A corned beef and cabbage sandwich on freshly baked rustic bread is a great choice at O’Neill’s pub in Dublin.

Explore the best of Ireland in a Rental Car

While you may decide to take a taxi home from a night out at one of these Irish pubs, a rental car from Auto Europe will make touring the Irish countryside comfortable and convenient. For over 60 years Auto Europe has been the leading provider of Ireland car rentals, guaranteeing the lowest rates in the industry and offering 24/7 toll-free international telephone support (1-888-223-5555). Rent a car from Auto Europe today and start planning your gastronomic tour of the best pub food in Ireland!

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