Sham-rock this Saint Paddy’s Day in Raleigh with traditional Irish tunes, our city’s parade, and all the pub fare.
by Emily Gajda
It’s just about time to get your green on and travel from pub to pub sampling stouts, ales, shepherd’s pie, and bangers and mash. Across the pond, St. Patrick’s Day is more of a church and family holiday, but here, we’re all about the Gaelic food and drink paired with festive dancing and shamrock decor. This year, Saint Patrick’s Day falls on a Thursday, but there are ways to celebrate all week long. From a block party at Hibernian to a classic Irish meal, here are 12 ways to celebrate St. Patrick’ Day 2022 in Raleigh.
Eat Irish Food
Find Irish staples like hearty shepherd’s pie or bangers and mash at either location of Doherty’s Irish Pub, along with pub food that the whole family would enjoy like fish and chips or Irish egg rolls (essentially, a Reuben sandwich rolled up in phyllo dough). The restaurant draws folks for not only its food, which combines contemporary America with rustic Ireland, but its community events too. Monday nights are for pub trivia, Tuesdays are music bingo, and Wednesdays are live Irish music nights! Check its site for details of their annual St. Patrick’s Day block party.
1979 High House Road, Cary; dohertysirishpubnc.com
Tra’Li Irish Pub has authentic Irish fare, including Kenmare Salmon and Corned Beef Boxty, a traditional Irish potato pancake. Every Monday night, there is pub trivia and all North Carolina drafts are $3. Stop by to get your trivia on while drinking some discounted local brews.
10370 Moncreiffe Road; traliirishpub.com
Carolina Brewery is serving a special Irish inspired menu from March 14 to March 20, including Reuben Rolls and Sandwiches and Corned Beef and Cabbage. Alongside these festive dishes, the brewery will also be serving a green version of their Sky Blue German-Style Kolsch only on St. Patrick’s Day. Go nosh on some hearty food and take some Instagram pictures with your fun and festive beer.
460 W. Franklin Street, Chapel Hill; carolinabrewery.com
Don’t like traditional Irish foods or just want another way to celebrate? Kanki Japanese Steakhouse has a bright green Mt. Fuji cocktail made with Midori (a popular and very green Japanese melon-flavored liqueur), sake, pineapple juice and coconut cream that is just bright enough to stop anyone from pinching you. Tonbo will also have a shamrock-colored cocktail, the Goku, made with Espolon tequila, Midori, and more (plus you can order it in slushie form). Grab their cocktail while you eat some ramen to warm up during these last few weeks of winter. Lastly, Sassool has all sorts of green foods that could make any table festive enough for the holiday including their Kale Salad, Tabouli, and Orzo Pasta Salad. Especially on a holiday of heavy foods, their healthy and veggie-filled menu items are a must-try.
Sip an Irish Drink
The award-winning Lonerider Brewery will have live music, drink specials, and food trucks for those who like to spend their Saturdays outside sipping on local brews. Children and dogs are both welcome at this family-friendly event (as long as they are wearing green). At noon, watch the kids take part in the chocolate coin hunt before you spend the afternoon drinking Lonerider’s “Starry Plough” Dry Irish Stout.
Free; March 19, 12 a.m.-11 p.m.; 8816 Gulf Court; facebook.com/events
Head to Glenwood South’s Plates Neighborhood Kitchen for their complimentary Irish-style beer taste. Try out two types of classic Irish brews (Red Ale and Dry Stout) and their North Carolina counterparts. Then, sit down to enjoy a full pour of your favorite one with a serving of Chef David Mitchell’s Shepherd’s Pie for only $17. Plates’ cicerone, Mike Comstock, will be there explaining the inspirations and origins behind each drink.
March 17, 5-9 p.m; 301 Glenwood Avenue; plateskitchen.com
North Hill’s STIR has lots of different spirits for you to enjoy this St. Patrick’s Day, like Jameson, The Irishman Founder’s Reserve, The Sexton, Bushmills, and other traditional Irish whiskeys. Their artisanal idea makes for a perfect drink on the rocks, and dishes like Filet and Goat Cheese Ravioli will pair beautifully with whichever drink you choose.
4242 Six Forks Road Suite 100; stirraleigh.com
Hear some Live Irish Music
Let the St. Patrick’s Day spirit last a little bit longer by seeing traditional Irish band Lúnasa at the A.J. Fletcher Opera Theater. Hosted by PineCone, the show is part of their Down Home Concert Series and is sure to be lively with Lúnasa’s complex and energetic sound.
March 25, 7:30 p.m.; 2 E. South Street; pinecone.org
Bake Some Irish Soda Bread
Irish Soda Bread is a quick, dense, and flavorful tradition that will pair perfectly with your Saint Patrick’s Day pint. Unlike most breads, it doesn’t require yeast, but uses baking soda and buttermilk for leavening. We asked local bread master Lionel Vatinet of La Farm Bakery to share his Irish Soda Bread recipe with WALTER so you can make it for yourself at home. “Every year for almost 20 years our customers have looked forward to celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day with us,” Vatinet says. “We make a traditional Irish Soda quick bread that’s tender and crumbly and has a little sweetness from the plump raisins we fold into the dough.” You can find the recipe here.
Make a Batch of Potato Soup
Though the weather may be getting warmer, brisk spring nights still offer the perfect opportunity to enjoy a warm, hearty soup — and the Irish know warm and hearty. If you want to stay at home with family or friends this Saint Patrick’s Day, this potato soup recipe from Doherty’s Irish Pub will warm you up and, even better, can be topped with whatever each diner likes, from sour cream and green onions to bacon and cheddar cheese.
Celebrate The Piper’s Tavern’s 20th Saint Patrick’s Day
North Raleigh’s The Piper’s Tavern is celebrating its 20th Saint Patrick’s Day this year and has promised to deliver its biggest party yet, especially since it has been almost 3 years since their last big celebration. Join them on March 17 for homemade Irish staples, including Bangers and Mash and Corned Beef and Cabbage, as well as Irish drink specials. Live music will include a special guest performance by Wake and District Pipe Band and begins at 3 p.m. with Travis Hyll. Music will carry on until midnight, giving you all sorts of time to try out the food and drink.
Free admission; March 17, 3 p.m.-12 a.m.; 8304 Falls of Neuse Road; facebook.com
Hit Hibernian’s Annual Block Party
Hibernian is having its annual Saint Patrick’s Day Block Party beginning at 8 a.m. on March 12. There will be a limited menu of Irish fare, drinks, and live musical acts like Wake Moody and Love Tribe. If March 12 feels too early to celebrate, don’t fret – they will be open and celebrating on Saint Patrick’s Day as well.
March 12, 8 a.m.; 311 Glenwood Ave; hibernianpub.com
Head Downtown to the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
Start the festivities early at the 38th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade downtown — in-person again this year! — on Saturday, March 12. The family-friendly event starts at 10 a.m. at the corner of Lane Street and N. Wilmington Street near the Museum of History. It will be replete with buoyant Irish dancing, imaginative floats, and sonorous bagpipe players all the way to its end in front of the Convention Center (raleighstpats.org). After the parade if you still have some steam, why not pop into London Bridge Pub (110 E. Hargett Street; thelondonbridgepub.com) for $4.50 well drinks and some classic pub grub, or Landmark Tavern (117 E. Hargett Street; landmarktavernraleigh.com) for a Tullamore Irish Whiskey cocktail and a super cool and lively energy.
Join the Shenanigans at the St. Patrick’s Bar Crawl
End your St. Patrick’s Day doing jigs down Glenwood South and across downtown. Discounts on food and drinks (plus free entrance to at least 5 bars) mean a lively afternoon and evening for you and your friends. Find your lucky green shirts and sign up as soon as possible to get an early bird ticket for only $20 before they run out.
$20-$60; March 12, 1-9 p.m.; bar list and addresses shared after registration; register at eventbrite.com
Celebrate at Lafayette Village
Spend a Saturday learning about Irish culture in Lafayette Village, a European-style shopping district in North Raleigh, at their Paddy on the Green Festival. After they listen to some mythological characters share legends and tales from long ago, a scavenger hunt will keep your young adventurers busy as they search for clues around the village. Hands-on activities like quill-writing and historic games will be available for attendees of all ages, while Barrowburn plays live Irish music and dancers from Triggle Academy, and Inis Cairde perform.
Free admission; March 19, 12-4 p.m.; 8450 Honeycutt Road; facebook.com