The Auld Shillelagh in Stoke Newington is arguably the best Irish pub in London. It’s shabby and not chic, and consistently serves one of the finest pints of Guinness you’re likely to find around these parts. The locals are a mix of Irish Londoners and the young hip gentry of Stokey. The cultural roots of the pub are clear to see but it feels genuine and not over the top. On top of this they play an eclectic selection of classic rock and they seem to have Bowie posters plastered all over the pub, but maybe I’m exaggerating.
Of course, it’s Saint Patrick’s Day on Friday and when I went in on Wednesday night they were already hauling out boxes of decorations and kegs of Guinness and beer. I’ve heard you’re probably best getting a spot early in day if you’re planning on celebrating St Paddy’s Day.
Now…you might ask what can be so perfect about a pint of Guinness. Well there’s a lot of debate surrounding this issue but all I know is what I was taught when working in a pub with an Irish manager, and I had this confirmed for me at The Auld Shillelagh:
1. Hold the glass under the tap at a 45° angle.
2. Pull the tap down and let the Guinness pour in until the glass is almost full.
3. Let it rest for one and a half minutes.
4. Top up the pint for a “firm and creamy head”
If that isn’t quite clear enough, head over to our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages to watch a ‘how to’ video I made at The Auld Shillelagh.
Lá Fhéile Pádraig! (Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!)