The First of the Day

Noel at the Brazen Head

With only a few more hours remaining before the raising up of that first pint in celebration of  another St. Patrick’s Day, I find myself soothing my own melancholic disposition with the usual measure of Irish music. And even though  it’s been some forty plus years since I first heard Tommy Makem  put his voice to “Four Green Fields,” I’m still in awe of a people that can extract mirth from misery, and create sweet song from the suffering and sorrow that has all too often been the consequence of Irish history. So in keeping with the spirit of the day and Erin’s fine musical tradition, we present a couple of our favorites from the archives of Parting Glass Media.

  • (a reprise of Rebels at the Rock)  – Why this particular video hasn’t gone viral is beyond my grasp of what the viewing public finds entertaining. But here in its entirety is a well-lubricated group of lads attempting to pay homage to that hero of Irish independence, James Connolly.

Irene Molloy And a perfectly sublime rendition of the “Fields of Athenry” from Irene Molloy.

Wishing all of our friends a very joyful Saint Patrick’s Day from the staff and contributors of American Public House Review and Parting Glass Media!

Glasses Raised…Spirits Lifted…Journeys Shared!


Warming up at Washington D.C.’s Dubliner

This week, in continued celebration of Saint Patrick’s Day, the American Public House Review heads to our nation’s capitol to visit perhaps Washington D.C.’s most famous public house, the Dubliner.  If you are looking to hobnob with the politicos, this is the place to be.


An Irish Tavern that keeps true to its heritage with great atmosphere and live Celtic music, the Dubliner has become the place for the D.C. recognizables to come and unwind with a pint.  In the days leading up to the Inauguration, MSNBC chose this pub as almost its home base of operations.  I was proud to see the network recognize what we here at the APHR have always know, if you want to find the soul of a town you must start your search in the tavern.

So click here for the story and to join Chris Poh as he seeks shelter from the snow and ice of an Atlantic winter in Washington D.C. with a happy and warm ending at the Dubliner, the capitol city’s most renowned Irish tavern.


Published in: Uncategorized on March 20, 2009 at 6:59 am  Leave a Comment  
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Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!!

In Ireland, Saint Patrick’s Day is considered a holy day.  The celebration marking the death of their country’s patron saint, the man credited with bringing Catholicism to Ireland, is a family and church day.  But here in America, where the world’s first Saint Patrick’s Day Parade was held in 1762 by Irish soldiers serving in the English army, it is one big party.


In the United States, the Irish pub has come to be ground zero for St. Patty’s Day celebrations.  Those marching in the many grand parades like the one in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania, or just attending them, often start and end their day at the pub.  For those of Irish heritage, and those who wish they were, the Irish pub remains a special place all year long.  But on the 17th of March, people are willing to wait in long lines for hours just to belly up to one of these great bars.

And we here at the American Public House Review are no exception.  We seem to find ourselves spending time in many of America’s great Irish taverns.  So if you are sitting home today, or at the office, and you are curious about the influence Erin’s Isle has had on our country, you needn’t look any further than the archives of APHR for some great examples.


Of course few are more famous the Manhattan’s McSorley’s Ale House on the lower eastside, or P.J. Clarke’s found uptown.  Molly’s Shebeen, also downtown, ranks right there with those two in the annals of great turn of the century Irish taverns.  They are testaments to the lasting power of a great Irish pub. 


But a great tavern doesn’t need to be old to be great.  The Dubliner in Washington D.C. and the Dublin Pub in Morristown both opened in the early 1970’s, but feel as though they were transported here from Ireland’s largest city centuries ago.  For great music, try Mitchell’s Café along the Delaware River in New Jersey.  Or maybe you will be lucky enough to hear Gerry Timlin play at the Shanacie Pub in Ambler, Pa, where he is at once the entertainer, resident storyteller, and owner.

Needless to say, I love a good Irish pub.  I can literally say I was raised in them.  They are what brought me to my love of great taverns.  Yes, today may be the toughest day to get into one, and rightly so, but it is worth it.  I’ll be leaving for mine in just a couple of hours.


So from all of us here at the American Public House Review, to our readers of Irish and wishful-Irish heritage, we raise a glass and say “Thirst is a shameless disease, so here’s to a shameful cure”, and Happy Saint Patrick’s Day.

Posted by: David McBride

Missing Link Discovered in Ireland

A team of archaeologists and anthropologists, working on the site of an abandoned public house in the village of Knockaderry in County Limerick, announced today that they have uncovered the elusive missing link between Christmas and Easter. The remains of this strange humanoid creature was found in an old cardboard box tucked away in the attic of the former Gilhooley House.

This came as welcomed news to the folks at Guinness who are attempting the have Saint Patrick’s  Day recognized as an official holiday in the United States; but whom are facing stiff resistance from the Vatican. Church officials in Rome are citing an obscure edict from the Council of  Trent which states that in order for a religious observance to become a state sanctioned holiday it must have a secular biological mascot, e.g. (exempli gratia) Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. In theory Halloween,(All Souls Day) and St. Valentines Day could be recognized because of Cupid and the Great Pumpkin.

When asked if he was surprised by the find, team leader Dr. Mac McCrackin, from the Edinburgh Institute of  Scholarly Advanced Academics – Glasgow Campus, said that he was more surprised to find an abandoned public house in Knockaderry.

The official classification for this new genus is “Viridis Vir Instituo  Tabernus” which translates from Latin to mean “Green Man Found in a Tavern” but most of the team just call him  Paddy.

Paddy O'Pine

Paddy O'Pine

Posted by: Chris Poh, American Public House Review




More Men In Kilts

Men in Kilts at Porters Pub in Easton, PA

Men in Kilts at Porters Pub in Easton, PA

There are so many wonderful customs attached to the Celtic season, that period before Saint Patrick’s Day in which we actually choose to honor and celebrate March 17th,  (a  number normally somewhere between 30 and 363 days, not including March 18th, as it is recognized as the national day of recovery for the hardiest of celebrants). But of all that is sacred to the Celtic tradition, there is nothing more beautiful than the wearing of the kilt.

The history of the garment dates back to at least 16th century Scotland. The original tartan weaves and colors signified regional associations. The practice of identifying individual clans by way of a registered design only began in the 19th century. Also during that period the donning of the kilt was taken up by the rest of the Celtic enclave. The Cornish, Irish, Welsh and Manx put on the plaid.

The kilt allows one to get in touch with the more sensitive aspects of manhood, while still being able to maintain our barbaric tendencies. As a species we are always caught between the skirt and the Sgian Dubh (pronounced Skean Du). Literally translated, it refers to the Black Knife tucked into the sock of a kilt wearer.

Matt DeBlass - Musician, Writer, Sensitive Soul, Celtic Warrior

Matt DeBlass - Musician, Writer, Sensitive Soul, Celtic Warrior

When he is not performing at a local Ceili, musician and contributing editor to American Public House Review, Matt Deblass loves to sport his kilt at Porter’s Pub in Easton, Pennsylvania. You can enjoy him and other Celtic artists by clicking onto the jukebox section of our magazine.

Here is one of my favorites by the lad. “Bartender I’ll Have  What the Man on the Floor Has Been Drinkin


Posted by: Chris Poh

What day of the year would you guess sees the highest beer sales?

One of the many great benefits of this thing we call the internet is that if you look around a bit you will find a wealth of fascinating, if perhaps somewhat less then earth shattering, nuggets of information.  And you don’t even have to look that hard. 

Take for example this little piece from Tampa Bay Online, the city hosting this year’s Super Bowl.  Did you know what yearly event brings the highest beer sales?  No, it is not football’s championship game with its parties full of salty snacks and aluminum cans of beer.  It’s not New Years Eve or even my guess, Saint Patrick’s Day with its day long drink fest full of corned beef, whiskey and lots of Guinness.

Actually, according to the Nielsen Company, it is Easter Week?  Now, can anyone reading tell me how this could be?  Do you drink lots of beer on Easter?  Do you know anyone who makes Easter into a holiday filled with drunken fun?  Well, the source of this statistic has obviously looked into this more than I have so I won’t dispute it too much, but it does make me wonder what other people are doing on Easter???

Rare Canadian Floppy Ear

Rare Canadian Floppy Ear


Posted by: David McBride

Published in: on January 28, 2009 at 10:53 am  Comments (1)  
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