Irish pubs, bars and restaurants in Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotee counties including Anna Maria Island.

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, here’s our annual list of the best Irish bars and restaurants in Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties. These are the places you’ll want to go for fresh Guinness and other Irish libations as well as Emerald Isle cuisine such as shepherd’s pie or fish and chips. These bars are fun all year round with each hosting huge parties March 17.

Celtic Ray Public House

145 E. Marion Ave., Punta Gorda; 941-916-9115;

The most authentic Irish pub in Southwest Florida, Celtic Ray lives up to its "public house" name with a building and interior that appears plucked from Ireland. Featuring all the right bottles of Irish whiskey and imported beers, it also has a menu teeming with Irish pub classics including the famed fish and chips. Other awesomely authentic Irish (and British) menu items include Scotch eggs, Guinness stew, Cornish pasty (pronounced pah-stee!), shepherd’s pie and leek and potato soup.

Clancy’s Irish Sports Pub & Grill

6218 Cortez Road W., Bradenton; 941-794-2489;

Clancy’s might not be the most authentic Irish pub on the list, but it just might be the most fun, with a huge tiki bar hosting live music in addition to the large indoor bar and dining area. Plus, Clancy’s serves top-shelf pub grub including one of the best reuben sandwiches around and highly addictive Clancy Rolls, egg rolls filled with corned beef, sauerkraut and thousand island dressing.

Freckled Fin Irish Pub

5337 Gulf Drive, Holmes Beach; 941-251-3930;

If you’re looking for an Irish pub with a island theme and lots of varied live music acts, check out Freckled Fin in the Anna Maria Island city of Holmes Beach. Cocktails include plenty made with Jameson and Baileys, as well as others such as the Leapin’ Leprechaun, containing Smirnoff Citrus and other tropical ingredients.

Irish 31

3750 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota; 941-234-9265;

A more contemporary take on an Irish bar — its founder has said he envisioned it as the Outback of Irish pubs — Irish 31 still features plenty of traditional fare such as shepherd’s pie and bangers and mash, as well as Guinness and Smithwick’s on tap. It also has its own draft red ale and i31 Whiskey made with Ybor’s Florida Cane Distillery.

Lynches Pub & Grub

19 North Blvd of Presidents, Sarasota; 941-388-5550;

Nestled in a cozy spot on St. Armands Circle, Lynches Pub & Grub offers a fine selection of Irish whiskey (50-plus!) and beer paired with dishes such as Irish stew, corned beef and cabbage and Cork cottage pie, as well as fish and chips and the Smoked Irish Salmon Platter. Also, Lynches is a licensed package store, so you can grab a bottle of Jameson and six-pack of Guinness to go.

McCabe’s Irish Pub

302 Old Main St., Bradenton; 941-896-3126

Occupying the first floor of a historic former hotel at the corner of Old Main Street and Third Avenue, McCabe’s is the most genuine Irish pub in Manatee County thanks to the cozy design and close watch of owner Thomas Stynes, who was born and raised in Ireland. Enjoy Irish pub grub at McCabe’s courtesy of sister business Bad Ass Cafe, located two doors down.

Molly Malone’s Irish Pub

6586 Gateway Ave., Sarasota; 941-925-2344;

A dive-y Irish pub in the best way possible, Molly Malone’s is a Gulf Gate Village gem where folks come to decompress with Irish whiskey, beer, smokes, pool table, sports on TV and loud jukebox tunes.

Pub 32 Irish Gastropub

8383 S. Tamiami Trail, Sarasota; 941-952-3070;

Pub 32 is not your average, Americanized Irish bar. Nope, it’s an Irish gastropub (and, yes, full liquor bar) and owner Ross Galbraith make sure the Irish cuisine is routinely excellent. Menu favorites include fish & chips, bangers and mash, shepherd’s pie, Irish stew and corned beef cabbage as well as specials such as Sausage & Irish Cheddar Stuffed Chicken Breast.

Shamrock Pub

2257 Ringling Blvd., Sarasota; 941-952-1730;

A most welcoming and intimate craft beer bar with, yes, Guinness and other Irish favorites on tap, Shamrock Pub is also the best spot in Sarasota to watch soccer and celebrate Paddy’s Day, with a huge (free admission) block party featuring lots of local rock and Celtic bands.

T.J. Carney’s

231 W. Venice Ave., Venice; 941-480-9244;

Located in the heart of downtown Venice, T.J. Carney’s wide-spanning menu includes Irish staples such as shepherd’s pie and fish and chips. There’s also Guinness on tap, as well as cocktails like their own Irish coffee and an Irish Mule (a Moscow mule made with Jameson.)

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