Louisiana Eats: Irish Pubs & The Feast Of Saint Patrick

Whether it means indulging in a Full Irish breakfast, marching in the Irish Channel Parade, or simply enjoying a pint of Guinness at the local Irish pub, it's time to celebrate St. Patrick's Day! On this week's Louisiana Eats!, we explore Irish history and heritage in the Pelican State, hear stories from 21st century Irish immigrants, and take a tour of local pubs to hear how they observe the Feast of Saint Patrick.

Line up for the French Quarter Irish Parade    INFROGMATION OF NEW ORLEANS / FLICKR

Line up for the French Quarter Irish Parade


We begin with a discussion about the history of Irish immigration to the Crescent City with Tulane History Professor Laura Kelley, author of “The Irish in New Orleans.” Laura explains how Irish expatriates over the past 200 years developed a thriving community and influenced Louisiana culture in some unexpected ways.

Then, we learn about the cultural importance of the traditional Irish pub with Pauline and Stephen Patterson, Irish immigrants and owners of Finn McCool’s. Originally from Northern Ireland, Pauline and Stephen tell the story of how they resettled to New Orleans, eventually building their traditional Irish Pub from the ground up. When Finn's was hit particularly hard by Hurricane Katrina, the Pattersons' decision to reopen played an essential role in the the revitalization of the Mid-City neighborhood.

Also, Scott Gold describes his discovery and love affair with the "Full Irish," Chef Matt Murphy reminisces about St. Patrick's Day traditions in his native Ireland, and we hear about St. Patrick's Day radio pranks, weddings, and near-death experiences in local pubs.

We've got the luck of the Irish with us, on this week's Louisiana Eats!