From the Boston Celtics to the St. Patrick’s Day parade that paints the city green, Boston has been influenced by Irish culture since its founding.
Irish pubs are around every corner in downtown Boston, and every local has their favorite watering hole.
Each time I have visited Boston I’ve made it a point to try a new Irish pub.
From South Boston to the Waterfront to Beacon Hill, every neighborhood has a robust history and an authentic Irish pub.
Whether you’re looking for a pint of Guinness or a classic Reuben, you can find a great drink, a delicious dish, and a salty bartender at any of these best pubs in Boston.
224 Market St, Brighton, MA 02135
The Irish village perfectly combines an Irish pub and a sports bar.
The atmosphere is laid-back, and folks are welcome for a happy hour after work or for an afternoon pint.
The pub opens at 3:00 PM daily and stays open until at least 11:00 PM in the evenings.
Irish Village is located near Oak Square along Market Street.
On draft, the bar serves a ray of beers like Guinness, a Fiddlehead IPA from Vermont, and A Notch Session Pilsner from Massachusetts.
When I visited, I tried the ham and cheese Toastie with black forest ham and American cheese.
The pub also has a variety of signature cocktails and a list of available wines.
The Black Rose
160 State St, Boston, MA 02109
The Black Rose is located adjacent to the Faneuil Hall Marketplace.
The pub is open from midday until late at night, with brunch being served on the weekends.
The black rose is a traditional pub with authentic Irish dishes, a variety of ales, and many imported beers.
If you’re visiting during a weekend, be sure to stop by for the full Irish breakfast with black pudding and grilled tomatoes.
Additionally, the Reuben spring rolls are a great twist on a classic taste.
I also enjoyed trying the Guinness beef stew. Finally, look to the board above the bar for a long list of available Irish whiskeys.
Brendan Behan Pub
378 Centre St, Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
For a good reason, Brendan Behan Pub is often listed among the top bars in Boston.
The pub is dog friendly, and you will often hear live music from its doors.
The pub is located near Mission Hill and adjacent to Olmsted Park and is open daily from noon to 1:00 AM.
My favorite thing to order from the bar is a black velvet which is a mixture of champagne and Guinness, which stays cleanly separated in the glass.
Of course, you can also grab one of the local brews, a Sam Adams, and sip on a classic American beer.
Be sure to grab some chips and salsa as a tasty bar snack.
247 Elm St, Somerville, MA 02144
Situated in the heart of Davis Square, The Burren is one of the best Irish pubs.
The pub is open around midday and stays open until at least 1:00 AM but often has extended hours on the weekends.
The bold black and red paint distinctly identify The Burren as an Irish pub.
The pub both live music seven nights a week, so be sure to plan to sit in the front room to enjoy the show.
When I visited, I ordered the fish and chips, which were perfectly prepared.
The bar makes signature cocktails and poles pints of beer regularly.
Try the Baby Guinness shot, which is coffee liqueur topped with Bailey’s!
1357 Cambridge St, Cambridge, MA 02139
The Druid is across Charles River from Boston proper, located in Mid-Cambridge.
The bar is open for lunch and remains open until 2:00 AM every day, Making it one of the best locations to visit regardless of the time of day!
The interior has a beautiful, long wooden bar where you can see generations of people have sat to enjoy a Guinness.
My two favorite meals at this pub are the shepherd’s pie and the fish chowder.
If you’re visiting during brunch, try the smoked salmon omelet.
The bar has traditional offerings, so be sure to order a half-and-half, equal parts of Guinness and Harp.
Interestingly, guests can also book a room at the pub via Airbnb!
6 Beacon St, Boston, MA 02108
Emmets is steps away from the Old South Meeting House, the historical building where people planned the Boston tea party.
Additionally, the pub is also steps away from Samuel Adams‘s grave.
Stepping into the pub after taking a historic walk puts into perspective the elements of why there are so many Irish pubs in the Boston area.
I recommend trying the Guinness onion soup as a start to your meal.
The grilled corn beef on sourdough bread is one of the most popular sandwiches on the menu.
Try the roasted salmon dinner with potatoes and brussels sprouts for something a little more substantial. From the cocktail menu, I enjoyed Ginger pear martini.
J.J. Foley’s Cafe
117 E Berkeley St, Boston, MA 02118
J.J. Foley’s Cafe is open every day until 1:00 AM. The pope was founded in 1909 and continues to serve both American dishes and classic Irish drinks.
It is located in the south end neighborhood of Boston near the intersection of interstates 93 and 90.
The exterior of the pub is welcoming with massive and beautiful wooden doors.
Be sure to try Tim’s Meatball Sandwich with marinara sauce and provolone.
Another popular menu item is Jerry’s Shepherd’s Pie, with both beef and lamb.
From the bar, try a Smithwick’s or a local draft like Wormtown’s Be Hoppy.
Also, try the espresso martini, which the bar tops with a splash of Bailey’s.
Olde Magoun’s Saloon
518 Medford St, Somerville, MA 02145
Olde Magoun’s Saloon is a large pub near Trum Field, a short drive from downtown Boston.
The pub offers a distinct neighborhood vibe and an array of different spirits and beers behind the bar.
The bar is open 7 days a week, so stop in any time for a pint.
Notably, brunch is available on weekends beginning at 10:00 AM.
The bar posts at least 28 tabs of local and imported beer. Order the warm, soft pretzel with cheese fondue to pair with your pint.
I also enjoyed the short rib poutine when I visited the pub.
Interestingly, I’d also recommend ordering the Cubano sandwich.
It’s not necessarily what you think you find in an Irish pub, but it is delicious.
If you’re visiting during brunch, you can’t go wrong with the corned beef hash.
934 Dorchester Ave, Boston, MA 02125
The Banshee is an Irish sports bar that shows primarily European sports like soccer games.
The pub opens at 9:00 AM on the weekends and 11:00 AM during the week and remains open until 1:00 AM.
The pub is located near the Upham’s Corner neighborhood, just off Interstate 93.
In addition to Guinness the bar has other imports like Strongbow cider and Carlsberg Pilsner.
Be sure to order the New England clam chowder or the Famous chicken tenders with buffalo or honey mustard dipping sauce.
If you’re with a group, I recommend sharing O’Malley’s garlic fries that are loaded with bacon, cheese, and ranch.
The Plough and Stars
912 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139
The Plough and Stars is an old-school Irish pub that offers live music in the evenings and a full bar throughout the day.
The eatery opens at noon daily and stays open until 1:00 AM or 2:00 AM.
The pub is located in Riverside along Massachusetts Avenue.
Try the bangers and mash potato with onion gravy for dinner, it is excellent.
I have also enjoyed the blackened catfish sandwich with a Cajun aïoli.
Additionally, the Irish lamb stew is hearty and satisfying. From the bar, order an Aperol spritz for a refreshing cocktail.
Corrib Pub & Restaurant
2030 Centre St, West Roxbury, MA 02132
Located at the corner of Billings Field in West Roxbury, Corrib Pub is a neighborhood staple and favorite of locals.
The pub is open midday until 2 AM every day.
It is certainly one of the best Irish palms in the Boston area.
Try the Smitty Special Deep fried chicken breast served on a bulkie roll with bacon or the tuna melt on marble rye.
Another local favorite is the Grilled Teriyaki Sirloin Tips served with a potato and seasoned vegetables.
From the bar, try Magners Irish Cider or a cocktail of Jameson and ginger beer.
795 Adams St, Boston, MA 02124
Eire Pub is located in the Ashmont neighborhood, near the Cedar Grove Cemetery.
The pub is open at 10:00 AM nearly every day and stays open until at least midnight.
The green and gold lettering make this public easily identifiable.
The signage on the outside still reads “men’s bar” but that is a vestige left over from an older time and now both men and women are welcome.
For a bite to eat, I recommend the Reuben or the famous chicken sandwich.
In fact some famous faces have done just that, both Presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton have visited this pub in Boston.
Additionally, Mark Wahlberg has stopped in for a pint, so grab a drink and take in the history.
L Street Tavern
658 E 8th St, Boston, MA 02127
Located near City Point by the Old Harbor, L Street Tavern seems unassuming but it has a vibrant past.
The pub was made famous in the movie Good Will Hunting and many people visit daily.
The pub is on a busy city corner, so it’s fun to watch passersby from the window. The bar is open every day until 1:00 AM.
The bar has Guinness, Stella Artois, and Budweiser on draft.
Most visitors who pop in wind up enjoying a beer and watching a football game on the television, particularly a Patriots game.
While people may still ask “how you like ‘dem apples,” sadly the food menu does not include an apple.
Mr. Dooley’s Tavern
77 Broad St, Boston, MA 02109
Located near the Old State House and the New England aquarium, Mr. Dooley’s Tavern gets a lot of diverse visitors every day.
The pub is in the heart of downtown Boston and is open from 11:30 AM to 2:00 AM during the week with extended hours on the weekends.
Often an Irish fiddler will hop on stage to play live music!
My favorite bite of food at the tavern is the Guinness cheese dip served with Bavarian soft pretzels.
Also, be sure to order the spud skins filled with cheese, sour cream, and chives.
One of the most popular things to order at the bar is Mr. Dooley’s Famous Iced Irish Coffee with Irish whiskey, iced coffee, and whipped cream.
Another popular cocktail is Kenny’s Island Mule with Blue Chair Bay Coconut Spiced Rum, Lime Juice, and Ginger Beer!
837 Summer St, Boston, MA 02127
Murphy’s Law is one of the best Irish pubs in Boston. It is located in South Boston near Medal of Honor Park.
The bar is open from noon till 2:00 AM daily.
The exterior is an eye-catching red with gold lettering that makes the pub easy to find.
The bar offers many draft beers like Blue Moon, Rebel IPA, Goose Island IPA, and Guinness. Additionally, the bar has plenty of dart boards for friendly competition.
Murphy’s Law is a traditional Boston dive bar with a casual atmosphere and flowing booze.
Boston has dozens of Irish bars in every corner of the city. No matter what your Boston itinerary is, be sure to find one of these local pubs for dinner or a drink.
Did we leave a restaurant out of this list? Make sure you leave us a comment and we’ll check it out!
If you are interested in learning more about the best pubs across the country, check out where to Grab a Pint at these Boston Irish Pubs.
If you’re craving a lobster roll, Boston is the place to be. Here are some of our favorite places to grab a lobster roll in the city!
Did we leave your favorite Irish bar out of this list? Leave us a comment down below and let us know!
Best Irish Pubs in Boston
- Irish Village
- The Black Rose
- Brendan Behan Pub
- The Burren
- The Druid
- J.J. Foley’s Cafe
- Olde Magoun’s Saloon
- The Banshee
- The Plough and Stars
- Corrib Pub & Restaurant
- Eire Pub
- L Street Tavern
- Mr. Dooley’s Tavern
- Murphy’s Law
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