Best of Boston

BEST Irish Pub

2016 BEST Irish Pub
Emmets-Best irish pub

Emmet’s Irish Pub

Boston

In a sea of paint-by-numbers pseudo-Irish pubs Emmet’s abstains from the usual kitsch. No bric-a-brac-cluttered curio shelves here just Beacon Hill lawyers enjoying a fantastic Guinness onion soup at lunchtime with gregarious ringmaster Oran McGonagle presiding over the whole no-frills affair. read more»

2015 BEST Irish Pub

The Druid

Cambridge

Within the enormous spectrum of Irish-ish spots in Boston what ultimately sets the Druid apart is its unwavering commitment to the basics (a perfectly poured Guinness traditional live music sessions an affable barkeep) plus some surprises including a seasonal braised… read more»

2014 BEST Irish Pub

Phoenix Landing

Cambridge

Discussions of Boston’s Irish pubs typically involve squirrely notions of authenticity. The problem is, no such thing exists, and most attempts ring about as true as some "Ireland-land" simulacrum at Epcot. So this year we decided to give the nod… read more»

2013 BEST Irish Pub
Photo by Jesse Burke

James’s Gate

Jamaica Plain

The main purpose of a pub (besides offering good beer, of course) is to unite folks of all ages and backgrounds in a welcoming, laid-back atmosphere. This place does just that, with a flickering fireplace that provides the perfect backdrop… read more»

2012 BEST Irish Pub

James’s Gate

Jamaica Plain

Plenty of the Irish pubs around here are just poseurs where jersey-clad dudes bro out with a bottle of Bud. For the real deal, it’s James’s Gate, a warm place packed with diners and drinkers enjoying an al fresco quaff… read more»

2011 BEST Irish Pub

Brendan Behan Pub

Jamaica Plain

Far too many of our Irish pubs cater to students, putting flat-screens on the walls and wings on the menu. Suddenly you’re not in a pub at all, but some grotesque shamrock-themed sports bar. Here, there are no such transgressions…. read more»

2010 BEST Irish Pub
2010-irishpub3

The Squealing Pig

Boston

With so many excellent Irish pubs in Boston, it’s tough to stand out. The Pig, however, is where to go when you want to feel both at home and ‘back home.’ Proprietors Sara Cole and Diarmund O’Neal are Irish nationals… read more»

2008 BEST Irish Pub

Brendan Behan Pub

Jamaica Plain

For drinkers, there’s no finer place to pass an afternoon than the Behan. The dark wood décor lends a warm, worn-in feel, heightened by the live Irish trad played regularly (which in turn is enhanced by several rounds from the… read more»

2007 BEST Irish Pub

Green Dragon Tavern

Boston

Picking Boston’s best Irish pub is a little like picking the loveliest clover in County Kildare. Still, the Green Dragon manages to stand out from its many worthy rivals. Set on a cobblestone street by Faneuil Hall, this 350-year-old pub… read more»

2006 BEST Irish Pub
2006-bar-irishpub3

McFadden’s Irish Pub

Boston

Most Gaelic-themed haunts share the same traits: a dark interior, flowing Guinness, and weathered regulars. McFadden’s has the first two, but mercifully replaces aging drunkards with attractive young singles, solid food (shepherd’s pie, fish and chips), and a raucous afterwork… read more»