Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, died in the Fifth Century and probably never imagined his holy legacy would be celebrated worldwide by Christians and worshippers of the pint at the Church of Pub. The feast day became official in the 17th Century and gave Catholics a chance to break their penitence (AKA hit the bar) during Lent. That’s what many Miamians plan to do March 17, when they'll wear green shamrocks because good old Pádraig used the three-leaf clover to explain the Holy Trinity to pagans.
This year, say “sláinte” to your drinking buddies via the sacred trio of Guinness, Jameson, and Baileys at parties all over town.
1. St. Pat’s Day Wynwood
Get all Gaelic at the second-annual St. Patrick’s Day block party presented by Jameson at Mana. Trade that Irish jig for twerking and fist-pumping to Wynwood’s dopest DJs while throngs of revelers gulp down brew from a pop-up green beer garden. The party is free and open to the public, but $19 gets you a hat, necklace, green foam stick, one beer, and one shot. Food trucks will bring the grub; arts and crafts will bring the charm. The party starts at 4 p.m. and lasts until 2 a.m., when even Kendall eyes will be smilin’, bro. Get tickets via Eventbrite. Visit stpatswynwood.com or Facebook.
2. St. Patrick’s Wynwood Bar Crawl
Where Locals Go is hosting this year’s crawl, starting at Shots Miami at 6 p.m. and ending at 11 p.m. or wherever the luck o’ the Irish leads you on this free-roaming crawl. Twenty bucks gets you up to five drinks, swag (while supplies last), and specials at participating bars, including the Butcher Shop, Coyo Taco, El Patio, and Garden. Bring your shillelagh in case the crawl turns into a stumble. Shots is offering one free drink ticket if you register via Eventbrite. For more about Locals Go, visit Facebook.
3. Sweet Liberty
Clarke’s Irish Pub closed in 2013 after a successful seven-and-half-year run. And though it's gone, it will not soon be forgotten. The beloved neighborhood joint makes its second St. Patrick’s Day pop-up appearance at Sweet Liberty with Clarke’s former owner Laura Cullen and her crew. On the menu: Clarke’s “infamous” fish 'n' chips and Irish spring rolls (corned beef, cabbage, and mashed potatoes rolled up, deep-fried, and served with horseradish mustard). Wash it down with a pint of “liquid bread” engraved with your name by the Guinness folks, who’ll be onsite, or enjoy fancier libations such as Irish coffee or Sweet Liberty’s frothy and decadent Irish Flip (Guinness, Jameson, a whole egg, chocolate bitters, and freshly grated nutmeg). Traditional Irish dancers, bagpipers, and local legend Brendan O’Hara will complete the shindig that begins at 3 p.m. and lasts until the last leprechaun is standing or 5 a.m., whichever comes first. Visit mysweetliberty.com or Facebook.
4. The Field Irish Pub & Eatery
At the Field Irish Pub & Eatery, don’t embarrass yourself by asking for green beer, 'cause it’s no more Irish than magically delicious Lucky Charms. But there’s definitely whiskey in the jar and more at this 16-year-old Celtic stronghold in Dania Beach, which is as close as you’ll get to the Emerald Isle this side of the pond. The all-day St. Patrick’s Day Festival 2017 will feature two music stages, dancers, cloggers, bagpipers, face-painters, gifts, and a late-night DJ. The celebration of all things Irish begins at 11 a.m. and runs late, until everybody is "whack for my daddy-o." Admission costs $10; kids ages 16 and under get in free. Visit thefieldfl.com or Facebook.
5. John Martin’s Irish Pub & Restaurant
John Martin’s has been bringing the Irish love to Coral Gables since 1989, and this year’s St. Paddy’s celebration will be no exception. Festivities begin at noon for a day of live Irish music featuring Bob Ritchie the Bagpiper, Paddy Kelleghan & Band, and others performing well into the wee hours. The kitchen will serve traditional fare such as shepherd’s pie and Irish potato soup, and the pub will pour a river of Guinness longer than Dublin’s Liffey. Visit johnmartins.com or Facebook.
6. Bourbon Steak by Michael Mina
Wickedly expensive, oft-coveted Pappy Van Winkle’s Kentucky bourbon is Irish whiskey’s American cousin, distilled from corn instead of barley. So make sure there’s plenty of green in your wallet to pay homage to Pappy instead of Paddy: A tasting of the golden elixir from 7:30 to 9 p.m. at the upscale Bourbon Steak in Turnberry Isle costs $200. Canapés will accompany the spirit, which the humble St. Patrick might have approved of despite its average retail price; a bottle of the 23 year-old family reserve is known as the Holy Grail among the faithful of the Pappy cult and retails for nearly $3,000. Follow the sophisticated sipping with a St. Patrick’s Day dessert special of Guinness chocolate cake with Baileys ice cream, whiskey butter sauce, and shamrock meringue for $12. Visit Bourbon Steak. Tickets are available on Eventbrite.
7. Fado Irish Pub
Once upon a time, in a far-away land called Brickell, a bunch of guys decided to make Dubliners green with envy. And this they did, by opening a pub and throwing a mean St. Pat’s block party where thousands of pilgrims take Metrorail to worship at the altar of booze. "Fado" means "long ago" in Gaelic, but no need to reminisce about good times past, because condo canyon will come alive with Irish cheer at 5 p.m. Tickets cost $10 in advance and $20 at the door for access to an outdoor beer garden, cocktail stations, and enough walk-up bars to get craic AF while enjoying live bands. Tickets are available at Freshtix. Visit fadoirishpub.com or Facebook.
8. Rooftop at E11even
Why eat potatoes like a poor Irish immigrant in steerage when you can dine all fancy on the upper deck? That’s what the swanky Rooftop at E11even is tempting you to do with its three-course meal that sounds magically delicious, with seating from 8 p.m. to midnight this Friday and Saturday, March 17 and 18. A $69 three-course menu includes a cocktail or glass of wine and dish selections such as Irish seafood chowder, oven-roasted whiskey salmon, prime aged steak, Guinness pie, and a Baileys Irish Cream-topped brownie — all served alfresco with a sweeping view of downtown Miami. Complete the feast with $3 shots of Jameson Irish whiskey from 10 p.m. to midnight. E11even's nightclub downstairs will pour open-bar Jameson shots and draft green beer from 10 to 11 p.m. Visit 11miamirooftop.com.
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Let your wild wee ones loose in the arcade so you can enjoy grown-up fare from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m at GameTime in South Miami. A $12 supersize Reuben burger brings Irish and American comfort food together with Angus beef, shredded corned beef, sauerkraut, Swiss cheese, and Thousand Island dressing on a grilled brioche bun. Shamrocks and bead necklaces come with $5 Guinness pints, $6 Irish car bombs, and other cocktails. Don’t give up March Madness either: You can catch b-ball on more than 60 TV screens throughout the arcade. Visit GameTime Players or Facebook.
10. Shots Miami
St. Patrick’s Day survivors who’ve slept off their hangovers can test their mettle at the beer pong tournament "your liver has been waiting for," sponsored by Jameson Caskmates this Saturday, March 18, from 7 to 10 p.m. Only 20 teams of two can compete in the primary contest, but the first drink is on the house for teams registering as backups. You’ll be tossing balls into pitchers of Bud while tossing back free shots of Caskmates — whiskey aged in stout barrels from Ireland’s Franciscan Well Brewery, with tasting notes of cocoa, butterscotch, and coffee. Register for the tournament on Eventbrite. Visit shotsbar.com or Facebook.