It’s a bit ironic that I’m doing a blog about Drogheda pubs. 1) Because I’m not much of a drinker, 2) I regrettably contradicted that very statement last weekend at a friend’s birthday celebration, and 3) the booze is now off my radar until at least the end of Lent. All that said… I’ve wanted to post about Irish pubs for a while. 🙂
There is an undeniable mystique about the charm of an Irish pub. While they tend to be very similar – named after their original publicans, decorated with stained glass, cozy upholstered booths, short stools around tiny tables, low ceilings, dark wood, shelves lined with knick-knacks and walls hanging with old advertisments – each one is entirely unique.
Unlike popular Irish pub ‘n’ grubs in the States, such as lively Claddagh chain, each REAL Irish pub has it’s own ecosystem. There are usually at least one or two pubs to each neighbourhood around here, and those pubs belong to a certain clientele. Frank had to explain this to me when I first moved here and would point out places, exclaiming, “That place looks cool! Let’s go in there sometime!” No, it just doesn’t work that way. Sure, you could go in and be served, sure you might know some of the people, but you would immediately feel in your bones that it’s not your pub.
Still, I love walking past these little meeting houses, peeking in the windows and getting drawn in, even if I don’t actually pull up a stool. There’s so much history going on in there… so many stories and songs… I wish I could be a fly on the brown, paint-peeling walls.
So here’s a little look at a few of our own colourful public houses, in slideshow format. Sorry there are none taken of the interiors… going along with my comments above, I did not want to intrude upon people’s peaceful after-work pints, especially in the pubs where I am a stranger! Enjoy. 🙂
All photos copyright of Frank Kelly and Maryann Kelly.
QUIZ: First person to anwer the most right by Paddy’s Day gets a prize! Good luck. 🙂
1. This pub used to be called Carley’s, but was purchased by an American who fell in love with it and renamed it after the old Irish Currency.
2. Which pub is known for its own resident dog, a small black terrier-mix that routinely trots around the roof ledge and occasionally runs away? (I also saved this dog from being hit by a car once when I was pregnant, but that’s another story…)
3. Which pub is Frank’s favourite haunt? (Ok, Ok, I go sometimes, too…)
4. Which pub is pronounced “Carberry’s” and is said to be Drogheda’s oldest, most traditional pub?
5. This unassuming pub actually draws in the greatest number of young folk on the weekends, mostly for the football and their house band, The Enemies – which one is it? (Hint: the name above the door is not the same as the actual current name)
6. Which pub did the farmers frequent back in the days when the cattle market ran through town?
8. Which pub has a horse-racing theme running through it and is even connected next door to a bookie’s? Hint: We had the cast party there after the premiere of Frank’s short film, “Slan Agus Beannacht.”
9. This pub is one that I’ve only been to twice but I would love to frequent more as it is lovely inside – Frank, however, is not so keen as he says it’s a pub for our parents’ generation.
10. One Christmas, Frank and his friends decided to tour the Drogheda pubs they never drank in. After stopping off in this pub, they decided to go back to their regular place.
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Hope that was fun, if not silly! Even if you didn’t post your answers, you should comment and say which of these places you like to frequent and why! Or, if you’re not from Drogheda, which pub looks most intriguing?