L.A.'s best Irish pubs
Here is what we love about the Auld Dubliner: The menu doesn't dabble in Irish dishes, it full-on embraces them. Bangers and champ, Irish ham and cabbage, the Boxty (a traditional Irish potato pancake) and an all-day, full Irish breakfast are just a few of the plates that'll have you breaking out in a jig. Their drink selection is nothing to scoff at, either: The Auld Dubliner is known for pouring the perfect pint of Guinness Draught. (And did we mention they have apple cider on tap?) Stop by throughout the week for live music, dominated by Celtic "Shamrockabilly" artists.
Even if you’ve never been to Casey’s, you’re probably familiar with the sprawling, dark-wood-everything bar: It's served as the set for just about every pub-focused scene on TV in the last 20 years. Given an Irish reboot from the brains behind Tam O’Shanter and Lawry’s, Casey’s is still imbued with that faded-elegance vibe. The many rooms here are dotted with TVs—you’ll find both North American and European sports on the screens—and plenty of fans, especially of the USC variety. In addition, there’s the occasional live band, darts, billiards and some quality shepherd’s pie and fish and chips.
Your eyes may need some adjusting once you enter the Irish Times, a divey, dimly lit Irish pub, but give it some time and you'll soon find yourself comfortably immersed in your surroundings. That's because comfort is key at this Culver City bar, where regulars gather for trivia on Tuesdays while noshing on bangers and mash or beef and Guinness pie. There is authentic Celtic music that plays throughout the pub on weekdays, karaoke on Wednesdays, and live bands that perform on the weekends (no cover!), but nothing tops the noise coming from tables of regulars who've camped out at the pub since noon. Not a regular yet? Order a pint of Strongbow Cider, pick up a pool cue, and you'll be sure to make friends in no time.
An Irish pub in the middle of Hollywood may seem like a boozy tourist trap, but we're not complaining. Jameson's Irish Pub has one of the best happy hours on the Walk of Fame—2-for-1 drinks, Monday through Friday, noon to 8pm. What's more, their namesake liquor is featured in over half the drinks on the cocktail list, making this pub a whiskey-lover's haven. Try the classic Jameson Pickleback Shot, the Jame-O' Rita or the Irish Hooligan (featuring a little bit of everything, including Jameson, vodka and peach schnapps...heyo!). The booze carries over to the food menu as well, where diners can order Guinness-breaded chicken tenders or apple and Irish-whiskey sausage. This is one tourist trap we wouldn't mind being stuck in.
Starting your morning at a pub may bring the term "alcoholic" to mind, but at Joxer Daly's, there's no better time to sit down at the bar. That's because the Culver City pub's weekend Irish breakfast is a self-proclaimed favorite among the staff. Bangers, Irish bacon, eggs, toast, and white and black pudding (don't ask, just eat) are all part of this balanced meal, along with $6 breakfast cocktails—is there a better reason to get out of bed? If you're more of a night owl, pay a visit on Fridays and Saturdays when there is live music to enjoy. Care to create your own tunes? The bar offers karaoke on Wednesdays, although with all of the quality beer on tap (Boddington's! Guinness!) you just might be singing here every night of the week.
There are Irish pubs that feature music, and then there are music venues that happen to live in an Irish pub. Molly Malone's has been brewing up its own little pint of Dublin in L.A. since 1969 and showcasing musical talent (and a great beer list) every step of the way. Rock, Irish folk, country—the lineup spans the genre gamut, and with Molly's stellar acoustics, it's one of L.A.'s better pubs for catching a show. Dinner and a show, in fact—on nights with live music, their kitchen is open until 10pm. True, the menu sometimes reads as less than traditional—ask for O'Brien Fries and you'll get a plate of French—but the Kildare Hot Corned Beef Sandwich is as Irish as they come. Plus, you'll need some sustenance while you dance the night away by the main stage, also known as the Snug.
Check out this Irish pub for some after-beach drinks and a football game. Start your Saturday (or Sunday) with their breakfast and $3 bottomless mimosas. Drinks are on the cheap side so you can get St. Paddy’s Day-wasted any time of the year. You won't find traditional Irish fare on the food menu, but the drink menu is stacked with whiskeys, beer and cocktails like the Irish Mule and Irish Ivy Gimlet. Check out their daily specials online, including build-your-own-burger Thursdays (with $5 beer pitchers) and half-off all drinks on Mondays. (Note: On busy Friday and Saturday nights there's a cover, but it's usually only between $5 and $10.)
Its mascot is a drunken toddler named Reilly, and really, is there anything more Irish than that? Rock and Reilly's has maintained a frat house status among West Hollywood's watering holes, throwing epic St. Paddy's Day block parties and boasting maxims like, "A new study shows that binge-drinking leads to a kick-ass good time." But it's also the perfect pub to partake in casual whiskey tastings—in their plush "whiskey gallery," no less—or to make friends at the bar during a crowded Saturday night. If all that testosterone proves too much to handle, step outside onto Reilly's outdoor patio with an order of the Irish Nachos, a fan favorite. Comprised of house-made kettle chips and topped with peppered bacon, Irish cheddar and corn salsa—the snack provides just enough sustenance to refuel for another round of bro-tastic shots.
There are 3,000 miles between Boston and Los Angeles, but that doesn't keep Sonny McLean's, an Irish pub in Santa Monica, from losing team spirit. Throughout the week, the Celtics, Patriots, Red Sox and Bruins can be found playing on one of the bars mutliple TVs, while East Coasters in low-slung Sox caps reminisce about Dunkin' Donuts and the T (the older-than-dirt metro system, for the uninitiated). The menu boasts New England and California fare, but the best dishes here are of British and Irish descent: The bangers and mash—British-style pork sausages with garlic mashed potatoes, green peas, steamed cabbage and house-made gravy—is a stick-to-your-bones revelation. When it comes to clinking glasses, choose from a list of highly curated ciders, stouts and IPAs.
The quaint community of Toluca Lake has its fair share of restaurants, cafés and bars, but for a pub that takes pride in its steady drinking crew, head to Timmy Nolan's for a pint (or one of the 20-plus Irish whiskeys available). Starting around 3pm, the first floor of this dark, quintessential Irish pub begins to fill up with regulars asking about friends and family between sips of Guinness and Fuller's London Porter, stopping their chatter only for snacks from the small grill across the bar (the potato skins are great if you're craving comfort food). Upstairs, a full dining room is available for pub goers to try the Irish stew, fish and chips and more. But beware game day: the vibe quickly morphs from a relaxed Cheers atmosphere to that of a sports bar packed with rabid fans rooting for their team. Blimey.
Rather than celebrate St. Patty’s with hundreds of drunk and newly “Irish” Angelenos, visit Tom Bergin’s on an “off” night to revel in the simple brilliance of this Irish gem of a bar. The beloved spot’s future is a bit unclear, and it's currently only open from to Thursdays to Saturdays, but that's no reason not to stop by and revel in those decades-old paper shamrocks and its iconic dark-wood interior—in fact, it's even more of a reason to enjoy it all ASAP, if you ask us.
Looking for some more Irish spirit?
When you're in the mood for some Irish coffee, head to one of these spots.