How I spent my Saint Patrick’s Day

Saint Patrick’s Day is certainly a fun day for me, but is also a very busy one.  I make my living as a musician, and I have been known to sing more than a few Irish folk tunes in my day.  So St. Patty’s Day, while certainly a fun celebration, is a big business day for me as well.  This year, like the last few years, I spent it playing at an exemplary Irish pub in Cranford, NJ called the Kilkenny House.

St. Pattys Day crowd at the Kilkenny House spills out into the streets

First, let me just say I simply love this place.  It is a true Irish pub, run by great people and frequented by regulars who love Irish music, good drink, and a great pub.  On Saint Patrick’s Day it seems all the regulars come to celebrate at their favorite place and they each bring a dozen of their best friends with them!  Needless to say the place was predictably packed, so much so that the crowd spilled out onto the the streets, soaking in the wonderful weather and the perfect pints.

Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale

Speaking of perfect pints, the Kilkenny House had a pleasantly welcome surprise for me on this most joyous of holidays.  It seems the week before they received a few barrels of my favorite Irish beer, Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale.  Like I said a couple of weeks ago on this blog, if you were able to find this brew at your Irish Pub of choice on Saint Patrick’s Day you should consider yourself luck.  Well, thankfully that luck found me!

By Dave McBride


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Pub Talk’s Countdown to St. Patty’s Day; Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale

Today, Pub Talk beings the countdown to our favorite holiday on the calendar, Saint Patrick’s Day.  To get our readers ready for this fantastic day, we here at Pub Talk and the American Public House Review will present you will some suggestion on what to drink and where to drink it.  (Safely and responsibly, of course.)  And a few photos from the Emerald Isle.

Let us begin with a beer that may prove difficult to find in some parts of the United States, Kilkenny Irish Cream Ale.  It seems to be in very limited release in the New World, but if you happen to come across this little liquid gem in your local Irish pub consider yourself lucky.

Kilkenny Ale is brewed in what is claimed to be the oldest operating brewery in Ireland, the Smithwick’s brewery in Kilkenny which has a brewing tradition that dates back to the 13th century.  It is a “cream” ale and it pours in much the same way Boddington’s does, but it is has a color and taste along the lines of an amber ale like Smithwick’s.  This combination creates a truly delicious brew.

Kilkenny is a staple on the Emerald Isle, as well as in Irish pubs in Canada and the United Kingdom.  For years it was unavailable to thirsty Irish pub patrons in the USA.  However, in 2009 it finally made it’s debut in the colonies at The Dubliner, Washington, D.C.’s most famous drinking hole.  (And while we are at it let us add The Dubliner to our Pub Talk guide to St. Patty’s Day.  It is a truly great Irish pub!)

For me, Kilkenny defined my drinking experience during my trip to Ireland.  While it is certainly true Ireland’s pub’s are filled with great libations, including the best pint of Guinness you will ever find, whenever the bartender would ask for my order I seemed to always drift toward Kilkenny.  Perhaps it was the novelty of having something I could not find back home, but I think it was more the flavor that was the attraction.  It’s time to end the tragically limited release of this wonderful brew and bring it to the masses

by Dave McBride


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