pub-cork

Tom Barry’s

Barrack Street is a steep incline, steeped in history. At its apex, the star-shaped Elizabeth Fort dates back to 1601. Since joining this stand-out street in 1984, Tom Barry’s has become firmly established as a Cork institution. Roaring fires, well-poured Guinness and candlelit tables make it a cosy sanctuary in the winter but the pub’s crowning glory is the beer garden. Come summer, grab a bench, order one of its delicious pizzas and hope the rain stays away. A great spot for eavesdropping on local chatter too, bask in the sing-song lilt of it all.

Mutton Lane

If you aren’t careful, you might miss the tiny lane of the same name that leads to one of Cork’s oldest pubs. Follow a mural depicting famous local residents all the way to this snug, dimly lit corner of the city. Inside, paintings and illustrations of Cork cover the walls and candles drip onto the tables. The absence of a television coupled with friendly bar staff means good conversation is encouraged (and inevitable). If you get peckish, the famous English Market is nearby – bring your purchases back to the pub, the staff don’t mind.

Franciscan Well

The Well was serving craft beer to discerning Cork drinkers long before IPAs became trendy. Built on the site of a Franciscan monastery, this pub serves water from – you guessed it – a well, and its alleged curative properties have people flocking from far and wide. While its beers and stouts don’t claim to heal, the founder’s passion for brewing that combines tradition with innovation draws devotees. Try the Rebel Red, the best-selling craft beer in Ireland, or the Shandon stout as an alternative to Guinness. Seating inside is limited, so arrive early on a cold day. On a hot day, grab a seat in their superb beer garden.

  • +353 214 393 434
  • Go to Website
  • 14b North Mall
    Sunday's Well
    T23 P264

Cask

It’s only been around for a year, but Cask has already become a hotspot for the young cool crowd. The menu changes every eight weeks and drinks are based on the seasons, though the amiable mixologists will happily go off-menu if you ask nicely. The prices are higher than average for Cork, but the newly restored art-deco surroundings and inventive ice flavours (enquire nicely again) make it worth the extra few euros.

Arthur Mayne

For something a bit different, pay a visit to this Victorian pharmacy-turned-wine bar, which backs onto the beer garden of below mentioned Crane Lane Theatre. A neon sign in the window will guide you to the door and, inside, expect vintage pharmacy cabinets, apothecary-themed cocktails and soft candlelight. Not to be missed.

Crane Lane Theatre

“It ain’t no sin, to take off your skin and dance around in your bones”, so says Tom Waits, who sets the tone for Crane Lane, according to its owners. It’s easy to see their muse’s impact: live music seven nights a week, including burlesque, swing and up-and-coming Cork bands, four bars and a heady beer garden all kitted out in decor from the 20s, 30s and 40s. Located on the remains of an old gentleman’s club, its debaucherous feel and fine selection of craft beers make Crane Lane a hard spot to dance past.

Oval

Named after its oval ceiling, this pub is the city’s best-kept secret. Candles flicker on mismatched tables, an open fire burns all day and ghosts (allegedly) keep watch over proceedings. Order a hot whiskey and try to secure the snug at the back of the pub – a warm, cavernous seating area you won’t want to leave.

Bar Pigalle

Cork bars make great pints, but there are a surprising number of impressive cocktail bars popping up around the city. Pigalle was opened by its neighbour, Tom Barry’s, in 2009 and has been satisfying connoisseurs with its signature cocktails ever since. Try the drink made with Tanora, a soft drink that doesn’t appear to exist anywhere outside the “real capital”.

Meades Bar 126

It’s easy to miss Meades; most who find it do so on purpose. Look out for the small, circular sign outside and expect a bar that feels a bit like someone’s sitting room. It’s definitely quirky, but the wine list is impressive and the atmosphere is entirely unpretentious. Pull up a stool by the fire and order a meat and cheese board if you get hungry.

Tom Barry's

Mutton Lane

Franciscan Well

Cask

Arthur Mayne

Crane Lane Theatre

Oval

Bar Pigalle

Meades Bar 126

You May Also Like

City Guides

You know how you have that one incredible friend who knows their city inside out? Yeah, that’s us. We take the world’s most dynamic destinations, hand-pick the best parts and give them to you in one place. This is the kind of guide that you don’t need to run by a local. Eat your heart out, shop ‘til you drop, drink like a fish, dance your socks off, sleep – then repeat.

Bundles

Enliven your senses through travel. Get stuck in to the culinary delights of Tokyo, explore the modern-art scene in Marrakech, dance the night away in Jaipur and listen to the beat in Ghana in the new Magazine Bundle, Senses.

Download Suitcase App
Learn More