Best St. Patrick’s Day Bars In Detroit

By: Liz Parker

Everyone’s Irish on St. Patrick’s Day, or so they say. Where should you go to celebrate? Check out this list of the best St. Patrick’s Day bars in the Detroit area.

Nancy Whiskey
2644 Harrison St.
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 962-4247
www.nancywhiskeydetroit.com

Nancy Whiskey Detroit can be found at the corner of Spruce and Harrison Streets, near 75, in Corktown, and holds one of the oldest liquor licenses in Detroit – more than 110 years, according to its website. It was formerly a speakeasy, too, and survived a fire in 2009. The bar has live music every Friday and Saturday, and does a fish fry on Fridays from noon to 8 p.m. The bar has Guinness on tap, and also serves Tullamore DEW, an Irish whiskey.

Conor O’Neils
318 S. Main St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
(734) 665-2968
www.conoroneills.com

If you haven’t been in Ann Arbor during St. Patrick’s Day before, you are truly missing out … students (those 21 and up, of course) love to celebrate any holiday that involves drinking, so this makes for a festive atmosphere. Conor O’Neils is the Irish bar in town, and you’ll want to head here to start your celebration. Every Sunday at 7:30, Conor’s features a “traditional Irish session” (live music), and it has happy hour from 4 to 6 p.m. every Monday through Friday, as well. Both street parking and parking structures are nearby.

The Old Shillelagh
349 Monroe St.
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 964-0007
www.oldshillelagh.com

The Old Shillelagh boasts free shuttles to/from major city events, such as Tigers and Wings games. Every Friday and Saturday, the bar has DJs on both the first and second floors of the bar, and the bar is recognized as one of the most iconic Irish bars in the city. The bar was opened in February 1975 by John Brady, a retired Detroit police officer who was raised in Dublin, and the second floor was added in 1976. In 1986, Brady passed the restaurant to his daughter, Barb, and she started the “circus style tent party” that the bar is known for on St. Patrick’s Day, in 1987. In 2005, the restaurant was passed down to Shellie, a third generation. The Old Shillelagh’s patio is heated during the winter and open air in the summer, as well.

Related: Best Corned Beef and Cabbage in Detroit

Gaelic League Irish American Club
2068 Michigan Ave.
Detroit, MI 48216
(313) 964-7474
www.gaelicleagueofdetroit.org

This Irish bar is as authentic as they come – it offers Irish Celli dancing on Friday nights, pub trivia once a month, and Irish bands on the weekends. It’s maintained by the Gaelic League of Detroit (like an Irish community center), but all are welcome. The club is located in Corktown, on Michigan Ave. by Wabash St.

Thomas Magee’s Sporting House Whiskey Bar
1408 E. Fisher
Detroit, MI 482017
(313) 263-4342
www.thomasmagees.com

Thomas Magee’s is located at the end of the Eastern Market area. The bar offers a happy hour 4 to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, that includes $2 domestics, $3 well drinks, and a whiskey of the month choice. Thomas Magee’s does not serve food, only drinks, but customers are welcome to bring their own food or order in delivery – perhaps grab a pizza from nearby Supino’s with which to enjoy your beer or whiskey.

Related: Ask a Detroit Chef: Best Corned Beef and Cabbage Recipes

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