It’s shamrock in the city. Yep, March 17th is here again. And since it falls on Sunday, you’ll have a whole weekend to celebrate (long and hard like a true Irishman or woman would) in honor of St. Patrick’s Day 2013.
Time to don your green garb and head to the nearest waterhole to toast the luck o’ the Irish. Here’s our guide for the best Irish cocktails, eats, drink specials and festivals in Los Angeles, organized by neighborhood.
Raymond Restaurant’s 1886 Bar, Pasadena’s heart of progressive mixology, will feature three Irish style cocktails. The Irish Maid made with Jameson Irish Whiskey, cucumber, lime and mint, Lacey Murillo’s famous Smoking Jacket (in photo above) with Redbreast 12 Year Irish Whiskey, 1886 Tobacco Bitters, Maplewood Smoke and Orange Vanilla Ash and 1886 Irish Coffee with Jameson whiskey will be served during St. Patty’s weekend. All St. Patty Day cocktails are $10 on March 17th.
No surprise here, but Glendale’s Neat bar is keeping it neat and tidy in honor of the Irish holiday. According to owner Aidan Demarest, there will be Irish coffees ($5) as well as Irish whiskey ($6) served neat and Guinness.
Tom Bergin’s Tavern
LA’s oldest and best-loved Irish tavern since 1936 is the home of Irish coffee in LA. To commemorate the day, the 1000th person to buy an Irish coffee wins a shamrock party. Doors open at 6AM and stay open until 2AM. Top of the morning festivities include an all-day Irish Breakfast (sausage, black and white pudding, bacon and fried eggs), Bushmills’ “go cups” (inspired by the to-go cups people use to go from bar to bar in the French Quarter of New Orleans) for toting your Irish Coffee with you all day, and a “stout off” with Guinness, O’Hara’s Stout, and Black Velvets, Black & Tans, Half & Halfs and Car Bombs.
Corner Door LA
Head barman Beau du Bois may have a French name, but he can sure rock an Irish cocktail, or rather an anti-cocktail. Inspired from the weekly Anti-Mixology special on Corner Door’s chalkboard, this weekend, you can drink in Culver City like a true Irish would by sticking to the basics. The Irish Anti-Mixology ($10) is a pint of Bear Republic Big Bear Black Stout and a shot of Jameson whiskey.
Townhouse & Del Monte Speakeasy
Venice’s newest hotspot, owned by a true blue Irish, is taking St. Patrick’s Day celebrations seriously. Designed by head barman Brandon Ristaino, try out the Gaelic Sour of Jameson, orgeat, lemon, angostura bitters, the Green Medicine of Redbreast 12 year, Connemara peated, lemon, ginger, honey or the Irish Tea Time of Irish whiskey, Irish black tea, lemon shrub, lemon juice, and nutmeg. Whiskey flights, bartenders choice of any three Irish Whiskys, are on hand all day as well.
Toast to the luck of the Irish at CAFE del REY, Marina del Rey’s waterside dining destination, and Napa Valley Grille, Westwood Village’s wine country-inspired restaurant. Available for one day only, on March 17th, paint the town green with a Shamrocker ($6)—a spiked milkshake with vodka, green crème de menthe, white crème de cacao and ice cream, garnished with a mint Oreo cookie and served in a martini glass.
Casey’s Irish Pub
The historic Casey’s Irish Pub opens its doors bright and early at 6:00AM for a full day of Irish festivities with their signature St. Patrick’s Day Street Festival featuring live music from celebrated bands and over 500 kegs of beer. Whiskeys, classic pickle back shots made with Casey’s house-made pickle juice, specialty dishes including over 200 pounds of corned beef, and of course pints o’ Guinness will be available until 2:00AM. Last year Casey’s went through over 200 kegs of Guinness, more than 60 cases of Bushmills and attracted over 12,000 attendees. This year, the festival will be expanding and Downtown Los Angeles will be closed down between 6th—7th Street and Wilshire. Festival is free before 1PM. After 1PM, it’s $8 pp.
If you’re looking for a more mellow, but just a fun St. Patty’s day celebration in Downtown LA, head to another of 213 Nightlife’s watering holes for a plethora of Irish-themed sippers. Cole’s is offering two versions of Irish Coffee (hot and cold) – Coffee, Jameson, and house made liqueur whipped cream and Jameson, Carolanne’s Irish Cream, Ice Cream, and Milk for a hand-whipped milkshake. And it’s not St. Pattys day without the obligatory shot. Irish Car Bombs, Cole’s Jameson Pickle Back, & Bitter Bush (Bushmills & angostura bitters) shots will be served as well. On the sweeter side, Guinness Floats, Irish Coffee Ice Cream, Bourbon Balls (creamy bourbon pecan center w/ a dark chocolate outside) and Porter Coke Floats are for the sampling. Cocktails include an Irish Old Fashioned of Bushmills Black, Angostura bitters, brown sugar cube, orange peel, an Irish Julep of Fernet Menta and Bushmills Black over crushed ice and garnished with mint.
HOLLYWOOD/LOS FELIZ/EAST LA
Big Foot Lodge
Los Feliz’s Big Foot Lodge is sticking to the KISS principle for St. Patrick’s Day 2013. $5 Jameson shots and $5 Irish coffees
Corazon y Miel
The city of Bell is apparently the new Silver Lake of Los Angeles. Chef Eduardo Ruiz (of Animal Restaurant) is at the helm of Corazon y Miel, a Latin restaurant and bar that just opened. And yes, Latin restaurants can rock St. Patty’s Day cocktails too. Check out mixologist Christian Pulido’s (of Craft Restaurant) Green Sancho Panza beer cocktail of Negra Modelo, Chartreuse, Midori, and Ginger ale.
Ever wondered why on earth green is the color of St. Patrick’s Day? Head HERE for the answers.
Photo of St. Patrick party-goers courtesy of 213Nightlife.com and tavern courtesy of Tom Bergin’s Tavern, rest of photos by Lanee Lee
Lanee Lee is a Los Angeles based writer inflicted with irreversible wanderlust and an unquenchable thirst for craft cocktails, cuisine, culture and high-octane thrills. She also co-founder of the award-winning VoyageVixens.com travel blog. You can follow her next adventure on Twitter @laneelee1 and Instagram @laneelee.