St. Patrick's Day may have been Sunday, but that didn't stop hordes of revelers from taking to the streets early Saturday in search of that ever-elusive pot of gold — or at least a frosty green brew.
At Irish pub Mac's Place on East Bay Street, leprechaun lookalikes were found downing everything from Irish car bombs to shamrock-spotted Budweiser bottles to acid-green mimosas. Each successful car bomb garnered a slap bracelet, and by mid-afternoon, forearms had begun to disappear under stacks of the green rubber bands. One Guinness-guzzler was so devoted to the day's events that he had shaved his chest hair into a shamrock-shaped tribute to St. Patrick and dyed the design a flaming orange to match his beard. From the drinks to the décor to the receipt paper and pens, Mac's Place was green from the ceiling to the floor — literally, as someone left a nice green puddle o' puke behind on their way out.
At Big John's, the $1 Jell-O shots were staining tongues and fingers. While the vibe was decidedly mellow in the dark dive bar, food specials from next-door neighbor the Green Door had people packing in to get a taste of all things Irish. Nothing like a little corned beef washed down with a Shamrock Shooter to get you in the St. Paddy's day spirit.
For the full effect of all things Irish we headed to Molly Darcy's, where the amount of Celtic culture would have made even Dubliners green with envy. (OK, we jest.) The 70-degree weather could be enjoyed out back where the patio party spilled into the parking lot. Snagging a seat among the wave of green revelers took the luck of the Irish, but it was worth the wait for a spot in the sun. A band of bagpipers in traditional kilts were accompanied by a group of step dancers, getting everyone who had had enough green beer to do a little Irish jig. Corn hole and heaping portions of bangers and mash kept the crowd going until the band Midnite Ale took the party into the night.
Fleeing the masses on East Bay, we capped off the night at Blind Tiger Pub The Sweetgrass Girls gave the green scene some bluegrass. A Guinness here, a few pancake shots there, and it was time for the pub's shepherd's pie, a towering stack of Irish flavor so hearty we were loosening our kilts by the end of the night.