If you go to Ireland make sure you try to set aside some time to spend in some traditional Irish pubs. While they are generally not considered the forefront of fine dining, there is no where else in the world where you find the kind of warmth that emulates from these locally owned and operated “public houses”.
Contrary to popular belief, there is plenty of good food to be found in pubs, if know where to look. Generally pubs with more lunch patrons that advertise their food specials outside are going to have fresher food, and a cleaner kitchen. In most pubs that serve food, you are sure to find traditional meals like fish and chips and boiled dinner. Don’t be afraid to branch out though! Pubs can have some of the finest soups and chowders you will ever have. One thing you will find goes well with all of the food in the pub is beer. If you simply ask for a “pint”, expect a 20 oz. Guinness. There are usually many other styles of beer to be found, and you can also get half pints if you like.
Another great part about an Irish pub is the fact that generally they are usually family friendly until around 8 p.m. Of course you can find traditional pub games like darts and trivia, but the real fun is in talking to the locals. Many of them come specifically for the conversation, known as “craic.” To add to the atmosphere, smoking is now no longer allowed inside pubs, so the outdoor areas have gotten a make over, and in many cases are protected from the elements. There’s nothing quite like listening to some live traditional Irish music with a pint in hand, while meeting new friends. It’s something everyone should experience on their next vacation in Ireland!