3 minute read
Find Your Smile Again at McArthur’s Irish Pub
Marc Bona and Arthur Paula, owner’s of McArthur’s Irish Pub located at 9246 4th St N. Photos by Kristina Holman
By Erin Cody
“When folks come to the pub they’re treated like they’re home. That is the Irish Culture and we live it every day,” beams restaurateur Arthur Paula. Hailing from Ireland, Arthur grew up in his family’s pubs and restaurants, dreaming of someday owning his own. After spending a lifetime in the biz, he and partner Marc Bona decided to open an authentic Irish pub in their hometown of St. Pete in...2020.
Keeping Culture Alive
Opening a new pub is a tall order even in the best of times, but luckily between his decades of experience in the bar and restaurant industry and his firm grasp of the raucous hospitality and community culture of the Irish, Arthur knew how to keep his new venture, McArthur’s Irish Pub, not just alive, but thriving. “We stayed true to our brand and kept the culture and atmosphere alive on a smaller scale to make it through,” he says. “We were the first pub to put the Irish Musicians back to work playing in the parking lot after reopening. Words cannot describe the amount of support from our local community that helped us through the last year - that and a few Irish Blessings!”
“In Ireland, the pubs are an important part of every community,” he shares. “To build fellowship, bring families together, and go through what the community is going through at the time, good or bad.” Arthur and Marc brought this important sense of community to our town when we needed it most. On a given night, you’ll find a bunch of friendly locals, many of them regulars, and even a number of Irish expats who hang out at the pub for a taste of home.
Ultimate Comfort Food
Speaking of taste, you’ll find the ultimate comfort food on the menu at McArthur’s. Arthur’s personal favorite is the pub’s take on a classic Irish dish, traditionally enjoyed late-night after an evening of drinking. The “Irish Toastie” is an epic sandwich packed with tavern ham, grilled tomato, a bunch of melted cheese, and house-made honey mustard. Pop in any weekday before 7 pm to enjoy some killer happy hour drink specials in preparation for your Toastie.
McArthur’s brunch, complete with optional bottomless mimosas, is really one to write home about. Loosen your belt in preparation for, among other options, a Traditional Full Irish Breakfast. Called a “Fry Up” back in Ireland, this beast includes two eggs with plenty of Irish sausage, Irish rashers (similar to Canadian bacon), potatoes, toast,
McArthurs Reuben Rolls Harp Beer-Battered Fish Bites Cottage Pie Guinness Stew
Much of the bar’s wood details are a true labor of love, custom made by Marc and Arthur.
grilled tomatoes, and topped off with baked beans. From grub to booze to decor, McArthur’s embraces traditional Irish pub culture, but in no way more than through their incredible live Irish music. It is truly something to behold!
Joy & Togetherness
“We have Live Irish Music every Friday and Saturday starting at 7pm,” beams Arthur. “All of our musicians are from Ireland, playing all the best of Irish music and pub favorites from around the world. On the second Sunday of the month at 4pm we have a Traditional Irish Session, and we have open Mic every Wednesday at 7pm for all the local talented musicians to jam out.”
McArthur’s radiates joy and togetherness - just what so many of us have been missing over the past year. The Irish know how to do it right, so do yourself a favor and join in the fun! Find your new sense of community over a pint, a laugh, and some downright brilliant live music. Slainte!