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Photograph: Courtesy Irish Exit

The best Irish bars in Baltimore

You can't help but smile in a bar from the Emerald Isle

Written by
Julekha Dash

Irish immigrants arrived in Baltimore in the 1800s and their presence can still be felt today with social clubs and museums honoring their heritage. The city is also home to many Gaelic bars overflowing with Guinness, corned beef sandwiches and shepherd’s pie. While the city recently lost several prominent watering holes hailing from the Emerald Isle during the pandemic, there are plenty of spots to wet your whistle and fill your belly. And there’s nothing like a festive Irish bar to lift the spirits, be it a celebration for St Patrick’s Day or any old random weekday. A tour and tasting at the Guinness Open Gate Brewery would make for a tempting chaser too, but to get you started, check out our six favorite Irish bars in Baltimore.

The best Irish bars in Baltimore

This beloved watering hole’s friendly service and standout pub grub draws the downtown happy hour crowd, as well as local regulars. The menu features traditional favorites, such as shepherd’s pie and bangers ’n’ mash, while the fish and chips get a Maryland twist with a dusting of Old Bay seasoning. Check the schedule for Tuesday specials and live music nights.

Though the name says as much, it won't prepare you for just quite how Irish Slainte is inside. Upon stepping into this two-story watering hole, located in the historic Fells Point ’hood, you'll see soccer memorabilia flanking the dark wooden walls and TVs playing Premier League games. Known for its excellent burgers and tacos, Slainte also shines with its breakfast menu, a highlight of which is the traditional full Irish, complete with scrambled eggs, black and white pudding, mushrooms and toast.


Céad Mile Fåilte (a hundred thousand welcomes) reads the website of this 30-year-old Canton Square pub. Decorated with athletic jerseys, Irish flags and green banners, Claddagh is popular among sports fans who want to catch the latest game. There's a bar both indoors and outdoors to enjoy, plus a dining room for customers who want to snaffle crab dip, seafood, and steaks in a quieter environment.

Baltimore’s newest Irish joint opened in late-2020 and prides itself on being an “extension of your living room”. Guests are welcomed through a door painted like the Irish flag (bright orange and green). The menu boasts more than 15 Irish whiskeys and foodie favorites including shepherd’s pie and fish and chips. Keep an eye out for the almost daily happy hour specials, when The Canton offers $3 Guinness Blondes and $9 reuben and fries.


Everything about this Federal Hill pub screams Emerald Isle, after all, the entire facade is painted green. Delia’s serves 40 types of wings, including the “Irish Wake” that will set your mouth on fire and others that are more gentle, like the Jameson-glazed. Corned beef egg rolls, Guinness-battered fish tacos and shepherd’s pie are some of the other menu highlights. Regulars can join the bar’s Jameson Bottle Club and get the whisky served out of their own personal bottle each time they stop in.

It’s worth taking a detour outside the city limits to experience this Timonium bar. With an exterior resembling an Irish village, plus a harp-shaped table, stone walls and wood-clad ceilings, it takes inspiration from the centuries-old pubs you’d find in Ireland (in fact, there's even the An Poitín Stil bar in Dublin). Poitín, if you're wondering, is Gaelic for moonshine, but you're more likely to find several Guinness beers on tap at this joint, plus Irish coffee and nearly 20 types of Irish whiskey. Pair the tipples with Guinness beef short rib or Irish stew served in a bread bowl. Come every first and third Wednesday to hear live Irish acoustic music.

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