With St. Patrick’s Day right around the corner, everyone is scrambling to make plans at their local Irish pub to get their pint of Guinness and some corned beef and cabbage. But if you were looking to mix things up this year, here are some of the best Irish pubs in Upstate New York. You’re sure to find some great whiskey and Celtic music at whichever one you choose.
5 Points Public House – Utica, NY
Inside the Irish Cultural Center in downtown Utica, you’ll find a fantastic Irish pub. Furnished with the dark wooden bar and booths that you’d expect, 5 Points Public House has the Irish pub trifecta: great drinks, great food, and live music. The furnishings and decorations were all handcrafted in Ireland and shipped in to provide the most authentic restaurant experience in Central New York. Start with small bites like their corned beef sliders or Irish stew, or opt for bigger dishes like their shepherd’s pie or fish in chips. Just be sure to finish your meal with the bread pudding topped with an Irish cream glaze along with the best Irish coffee I’ve ever had.
Barry’s Old School Irish – Webster, NY
You might be surprised to learn that the small town of Webster outside of Rochester has one of the best Irish pubs in the state. Opened by Jess and Danny Barry in 2011, Barry’s Old School Irish has everything you are looking for in an Irish pub. On tap you will find Guinness, Smithwicks, and Kilkenny. A variety of Irish whiskey and bourbon creams are also available. And the stools you sit on? They were imported directly from Ireland. As for the food, Barry’s regular menu features some of the best fried fish and chips I have ever had. They also have a Dublin burger and Irish potato soup. They love St. Patrick’s Day so much, that they also celebrate Saint Practice day a month before the actual holiday to extend their celebrations.
Coleman’s Irish Pub – Syracuse, NY
Tipperary Hill in the southwest side of Syracuse is synonymous with Irish culture. From the upside down traffic light to the leprechaun door at the local pub, Coleman‘s Irish Pub is always the place to kick off St. Patrick’s Day in Syracuse. It all starts with Green Beer Sunday at the end of February. In the midst of some drunken shenanigans, the world’s shortest parade takes place highlighted with the beer truck bringing in their famous green beer. Live music, drinks, and food specials fill out the rest of the day. And be sure to make reservations, because it is bound to be very crowded.
Kilpatrick’s Publick House – Ithaca, NY
For a city with some excellent restaurants, it’s surprising that it wasn’t until 2005 that an Irish pub opened in Ithaca. Kilpatrick’s Publick House is located within the Hilton Hotel but has a vibe of a historic Irish watering hole. The pub goes strong for St. Patrick’s Day with several drink specials for parade day, including beer, whiskey, and cocktails. As for the food? They have every Irish dish you could wish for: Reubens, corned beef and cabbage, bangers and mash… I highly recommend the shepherd’s pie and the mac and cheese with corned beef. The mac and cheese is made with a béchamel sauce and served in a cast-iron skillet. I was lucky enough to learn one of the secret ingredients: smoked gouda.
Kitty Hoynes – Syracuse, NY
The story of Kitty Hoynes goes back over a hundred years to County Kilkenny, Ireland. Generations later, the Hoyne family emigrated to the United States and Kitty Hoynes was opened in 1999 by David Hoyne. Now, they are determined to provide the most authentic Irish experience in Syracuse. That’s why you’ll find an incredible selection of Irish whiskey, a rotating selection of great beer, and some truly delicious meals. Their menu features both traditional favorites like an Irish breakfast, fish and chips, and Irish meatloaf, but also Irish twists on other cuisines. Enjoy their Reuben fritters and Irish poutine along with a whiskey flight.